Monday, July 30, 2012

Dolphin: New, 'Suzuki Method,' wiki, subject page at World University and School, Suzuki instruments: Bass, Cello, Guitar, Flute, Harp, Mandolin, Organ, Piano, Recorder, Viola, Violin, Voice, many of which are new wiki subject pages at WUaS

Hi R, 

Here's a new wiki subject page at World University and School for Suzuki Method -

I hope you're having a good summer. I just came across these items from the Suzuki method (now in around 10 instruments - - read the whole Wikipedia entry if you can), which I think you'd find germane for bagpiping: 

"The central belief of Suzuki, based on his language acquisition theories, is that all people can (and will) learn from their environment. The essential components of his method spring from the desire to create the "right environment" for learning music (he believed that this positive environment would also help to foster excellent character in every student). These components include:

Saturation in the musical community, including attendance at local concerts of classical music, exposure to and friendship with other music students, and listening to music performed by "artists" (professional classical musicians of high caliber) in the home every day (starting before birth if possible).

Deliberate avoidance of musical aptitude tests or "auditions" to begin music study. Suzuki firmly believed that teachers who test for musical aptitude before taking students, or teachers who look only for "talented" students, are limiting themselves to people who have already started their music education. Just as every child is expected to learn their native language, Suzuki expected every child to be able to learn to play music well when they were surrounded with a musical environment from infancy. (This does not preclude auditions for public performances).

Emphasis on playing from a very young age, sometimes beginning formal instruction between the ages of 3 and 5 years old. (See Technique).

Using well trained teachers, preferably also trained in using the Suzuki materials and philosophy. Suzuki Associations all over the world offer ongoing teacher-training programs to prospective and continuing Suzuki teachers. A basic competency as a performer was recently made mandatory for all teachers in the American Association; the holding of a music degree is not required.

In the beginning, learning music by ear is emphasized over reading musical notation. This follows Suzuki's observation that in language acquisition, a child learns to speak before learning to read. Related to this, memorization of all solo repertoire is expected, even after a student begins to use sheet music as a tool to learn new pieces. There is no formal plan or prescribed materials for introducing music theory & reading into the curriculum; this is left to the judgement of the teacher.

The method also encourages, in addition to individual playing, regular playing in groups (including playing in unison).

Retaining and reviewing every piece of music ever learned on a regular basis, in order to raise technical and musical ability. Review pieces, along with "preview" parts of music a student is yet to learn, are often used in creative ways to take the place of the more traditional etude books. 

Traditional etudes and technical studies are not used in the beginning stages, which focus almost exclusively on a set of performance pieces.

Frequent public performance, so that performing is natural and enjoyable."

Let's review more of the tunes from the Green Book, and try to perform a little more. 

I hope you're having a good summer. 


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