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My Summer Music Educators Workshop Experience in Carnegie Hall

In last July 2017, Carnegie Hall was hosting their annual Summer Music Educators Workshop for school and community music educators working with K–12 students. In today's blog post I will be sharing my personal experience with this program. Over the course of four days, I had the opportunity to engage with guest faculty such as: Twyla Tharp, Michael Repper, Marin Alsop, Nicole Mitchell and more. The main theme of this year's program was "Dare to create". As a music teacher I create with my students all the time by improvising, creating their own music, and working with peers and other students to build a culture of creativity in my classroom. The main questions the program was exploring are: 1. How does my own artistic practice impact on my school, students and teaching? 2. Which areas of my teaching practice could I explore in more open- ended, creative ways? 3. What creative habits can I build with my community of students to foster more daring and exploratory work?

The main session in this workshop were: Ensembles (Orchestra, Choir and Creative Ensemble), Classroom Connections, Creative sessions and Pop-Up Concerts. Every day we started our day with creative listening and just have us come up with visuals that matched the music, or we had a speakers such as the inspirational Twyla Tharp who shared her ways of using creativity in her dancing ensemble and in her private life as well. The main idea is creativity is a way of life not just a temporary engaging exercise. Shortly after, we were splitted to our daily creative sessions. We have been offered to participate four workshops out of five. Each session explored creativity from a different angle; in Creative Rehearsal Strategies we would use creativity as a strategy to prepare out students for success when they perform a challenging piece. In Tom Cabaniss's Connections between Improvisation and The Compositional Process we explored creativity through our voices and bring poetry to life with cycle singing techniques. For band teacher, the Improvising with Non- Traditional Notation session led by the wonderful flutist and composer ,Nicole Mitchell, offered symbols as a notation which can be great for young students. Creativity only can grow from solid technique and structure. Order and creativity are not opposite to each other. They feed from each other. I learned this from Ronnie Oliver, Jr.'s Preparing for Creative Leadership from the Podium. I learned how to make my conducting technique more precise to evoke creativity among my students. Moreover, Eric Dalio introduced technology as great tool to explore creativity through composition among older students.

Overall, I found this workshop helpful. I was able to connect with other music educators, create music, be inspired by different guest faculty members, and get helpful resources I can use this coming year in my classroom. The best part was to be able to sing and play three pieces we worked on during three days and perform them in Times Square. It really reminded us all the power of music to connect , express and Dare to Create!

Link for more information and registration:

My full review on my YouTube channel:

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