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Klarinet Archive - Posting 001303.txt from 1999/01

From: "Kevin Fay (LCA)" <kevinfay@-----.com>
Subj: RE: [kl] HELP!
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 1999 22:54:42 -0500

Bill Hausmann wrote:

<<<Had this individual not been given the opportunity to join the band in
high
school, he would surely not be a musician today. He would never have met
the woman he married.>>>

Two points:

First, the serious one. If you are an educator and kid shows up brimming
with enthusiasm, by all means stick a horn in their face. That is what they
are for. Yes, there will be a period of catch-up; if there is a real desire
to get going, however, you'd be amazed how short it is.

I started clarinet in fifth grade. I faked my way through everything,
playing by ear, all the way through seventh grade--started actually reading
music during my eighth grade year. During that year, I heard the Mozart
concerto played by a senior--bought a copy. Played the Rondo for solo &
ensemble in 9th grade, got a superior! (That's as high as they go). The
moral here is that kids hang around a long time until the lightbulb turns
on, at which point the learning can be amazingly fast. The mind turns to
sponge--It's up to us teachers to provide something for it to sop up.

Back when I taught privately, I often had parents ask how long they should
make the kid practice. I replied that they *shouldn't* make the kid
practice--forced practice does little to no good. At some point, most of my
students (again, private lessons, not classroom) would have the light go
on--and you'd have to pull the thing from their lips to get them to go to
bed. *That* practicing tended to get a lot done.

Second point--I met Mrs. Fay in band. Both of them.

May your reeds not chirp,

kjf

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