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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000349.txt from 2003/10

From: Deidre Calarco <DLeigh@-----.org>
Subj: Re: [kl] band directors
Date: Sun, 12 Oct 2003 00:35:19 -0400

> From reading all the posts over the past year, it seems that band directors
> have a lot more say in america than in australia or new zealand. I'm 16 and
> i've been to six schools and played clarinet at 5 of them. I have never once
> had a band director tell me what reed to use. In Australia, the director
> takes the band, your teacher teaches you and that's kept completely
> seperate. Band directors are often brass players, but i havn't ever
> witnessed them telling brass players to use a certain setup etc. Correct me
> if i'm wrong, but band directors sound powerfull in america, when in
> australia, all they do is take the band!

A lot of kids who are in the school musical ensembles in the US don't take
private lessons. In fact, the majority don't. The band directors have to
teach them at least the rudiments of how to play the instruments. I didn't
start private lessons until I'd been playing for three years, and only about
1/3 of the players in the top band in my high school studied privately. I
learned basic fingerings and embouchure from my 4th grade band teacher and
on my own, from charts. Most parents won't invest in private lessons until
their child has shown some talent and sustained interest, if at all. Music
is considered a "fun" subject as apposed to a serious topic of study by most
Americans. Art is looked at in the same way. They're the classes you take
to blow off steam and to get an easy "A". Some kids who play in school
bands don't even take their instruments home to practice. Are the music
students in Australia more serious?

-Deidre

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