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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000990.txt from 2000/04

From: "Kevin Callahan" <>
Subj: Re: [kl] Practicing at school (was [kl] Gender bias - survey?)
Date: Sat, 22 Apr 2000 23:41:05 -0400

>Subject: [kl] Practicing at school (was [kl] Gender bias - survey?)
>Date: Fri, 21 Apr 2000 10:54:04 EDT
>Bill Hausmann wrote,
> >To get ANYBODY to play low brass is like pulling teeth. I assume they
>made a mental measurement of the size of the instrument as compared to
>seat on the bus and done the math! >
>Parental preferences may enter into this equation, too -- the "Are you
>kidding? That thing would take up half your bedroom!" reponse, followed
>quickly by, "And don't even think about leaving it in the living room!"
>Though I begged for the chance to switch to a big, bass instrument as a
>I must admit with adult hindsight that shlepping a bass whatsit to the bus
>stop half a mile from my house, then hoisting the equipment up and down the
>stairs and through the door, would have been a dauntingly strenuous
>undertaking. Also, in my overcrowded, baby-boomer schools, the buses were
>crammed with kids, wedged three to a seat and standing in the aisles.
>With music budgets cut so much lately, do schools make practice space
>available any more? I don't know if this is a reasonable idea today, but
>kids with no access to a car ride, permission to use a practice room before
>or after school might make a difference in kids' willingness to play the
>honkers, such as contrabass clarinets. Omitting the commute might save
>and tear on the school-owned bass winds. Practicing at school also solves
>problems with noisy home environments or conflicting schedules, when more
>than one kid in a family plays an instrument in a house or apartment where
>sound carries.
>If it's at all financially feasible for the school to build a row of
>soundproofed practice cubicles along one wall of the music room, with
>into the room so that the students in the cubicles can see out and the
>teachers can see in, I think it's an investment worth funding. In high
>school, I did nearly all of my Bb clarinet practice in the cubicles.
>Students could sign up for any time of day when a teacher had to be in the
>music building anyway to do paperwork or hold class. We used study hall
>periods, lunch hour or time just before and just after school (when the
>extracurricular music groups rehearsed). Kids who signed up didn't need
>much supervision -- we just signed in, practiced on our own or in small
>section groups and then left -- so we didn't create a lot of extra work for
>the teachers. They seemed happy with the arrangment, since it encouraged
>kids to practice.

Our facilities are great, we have all that you mentioned and more. We have
TWO band halls, about 9 cubicles, two instrument rooms, a giant library room
for scores and the like, and two big offices. Oh, and we have a gian
percussion room too.

Kevin Callahan
Vastly Hugely Mind Bogglingly Big
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