So proud of everyone!!!
Music Recital: Elements of Music
Students of Karen Yonkers
Saturday, November 2, 2019
St. Luke’s Lutheran Church
Elements of Music includes contrasts. Contrasts in pitch, dynamics, tempo, rhythm and note duration. There are patterns. Patterns of black and white piano keys, specific series of half and whole steps, and musical forms in predictable melodic, rhythmic, or sequential patterns. And there are colors. Color includes the individual timbre of an instrument and the texture of sound. Along with the type of instrument or combination of instruments and voices heard, color also may apply to the way in which the sound is produced. Examples would be staccato, legato, accents, phrases and fermatas! And of course, music is art which is heard. Tonality includes such elements as major or minor modes, and the relation of melody to harmony. Today’s recital focuses on the marks on the page, demonstrating what these various elements of music are.
My definition of music: vocal or instrumental sounds (or both) combined in such a way as to produce melodic and harmonic beauty of form.
Here, I list the students, their pieces and what they demonstrated:
Noah: Opposites and patterns. Pitch: hi & low, Duration: long & short, Black Key patterns and imitation
Analithia Monsieur Mouse. High pitch & quarter/half note Rhythm patterns Faber.
Nathan Mary Had a Little Lamb. Contrasting Tonality: a tune on both white and black keys
Henry Improvisation and Boogie with Tucker. Creating melody over harmonic progression with C and D. Faber
Kate: Juggler: Staccato and legato, playing C in octaves. Alfred
Katelyn: Get Away! (William Tell Overture): Dynamic Contrasts. Alfred
Selah Minuet and Trio: Dynamic contrast, varying touch & Ternary Form. Alfred
Jacob: Folk Song Mix Up. Melody in right and left hands, playing octaves.
McKenna: I’m a Fine Musician. Varying dynamics. Pentascale with Tonic and dominant chords
Sojourn: Rigaudon Clarinet scale with quarter and eighth notes. Clarinet duet: harmony.
Perry Oom Pah Pah & Clown. Major and minor modes compared
Ariston: Vocal: America, Happy Wanderer. Demonstration of solfege singing & diction
Gabriel: Pastorale by Couppey. French Ternary with Plagal Cadence. Bacchus
Grace: Village Waltz by L. Køhler. Ternary I-V-I in G Major.
Caleb: Juggler, by J. Strickland. Arpeggios in music in a minor.
Owen; Bouree by Krieger. Rounded Binary form
Next is our Winter Recital, Saturday, December 14, 2019 entitled: Expressions in Music, and featuring seasonal selections from many cultures. 1:30pm at St. Luke's Lutheran Church on 4 Mile and East Beltline.
For lessons, event music or questions: Karen Yonkers (616) 648-3011 KarenYonkersMusic.com
When learning a new piece there is one pitfall that I discourage students from falling into. People of all ages lead busy lives. Finding practice time to learn pieces can get tricky. As I explained in the first tip, developing this habit is of utmost importance.
The pitfall I see is this: student begins playing piece, gets a few measures in, makes a mistake. Students stops, and goes back to the beginning, playing the same thing they just played, gets to that same place a few measures in, makes the same mistake, and then....did you guess? Goes back to the beginning. So what portion is being practiced? The part they already can play well!!!
My instructions are always: stop. Go to the place a few measures in where the problem happens. S-l-o-w it down. Employ one of these ways to fix that problem area:
1) Again, slow it down
2) if piano, try playing hands separately first
3) Methodically strip and rebuild: example in 4/4 time: play beat 4...a few times (x amount of times correctly), back up and play beat 3 and 4...then beat 2,3,4....and finally the entire measure. I call this "practicing backwards"
More tips to come!
I found this fascinating, yes! So much to this instrument.
Music teachers, parents, and directors all instruct students to "Practice!". Sometimes a specific amount of time is advised: 15 minutes, 30, or even 60 minutes a day.
What do I recommend? More than duration, beginning students just need to develop a habit of getting out their instrument on a daily basis. Once it is out, chances are the student will want to play a bit. This is where parents can be a BIG help: helping find one (or two short) sessions at the same time, in the same place daily. Guiding and coaching students at home creates more success and progress in their music studies.
In asking students to bring simple notebooks, I have the opportunity as their music teacher to specify what and how they should practice. If often have them recall to me what we discussed, and create bullet points from this. If I find that the student is not practicing (always apparent in the next lesson), I will suggest a time frame, or have them check boxes in their lesson books or notebooks.
Above all, students should be patient and practice faithfully. As with any skill, correct practice will lead to proficiency. Everyone has their own learning curve. Being able to handle Fur Elise on piano, or Mozart's Clarinet Concerto after a year of study is pretty much unrealistic.
Good foundations are important, and the first is to make practice a habit!
Now, go practice!
I post this to show how early exposure to music can be a real asset to musical development. I do NOT, however, subscribe to the pressure put on this young boy by his parents to perform, gifted or not.
Here is a video, if my readers are interested, and have 7 more minutes to watch.
THIS philosophy of parenting is more in line with what I would promote.
A highly respected teacher, conductor and musician, Benjamin Zander has a wonderful YouTube series with Boston Philharmonic that I enjoy watching. I first found him while browsing TED talks online in back in 2012. I encountered him again in one of my Music Education classes at Calvin University 2016. When I need inspiration, I will view it again, and I learn something new every time!
I post this here today to share this wonderful man's music philosophy with you all. Enjoy!
I encourage music students to study their craft by attending concerts or open mics as much as possible.
Here are a couple coming up this week:
Saturday, August 3rd: Ukulele Group
12-2pm at Marge's Donut Den in Wyoming (28th street between Burlingame and Byron Center)
If you don't have a uke, they provide a few. If you don't play uke, come and learn! How to play chords is projected along with a karaoke-like song.
Lots of FUN!
Friday, August 9th: Karen Yonkers' Student Recital
1:30-3pm at St. Luke's Lutheran Church (corner of East Beltline and 4Mile)
Just a fun sharing time for students.
Light refreshments to follow.
Saturday, August 10th: Sam's Swing Band
1-2:30pm at Grandville's 6th Annual Vintage Festival
Chicago Drive between Wilson and Washington
I play piano with this group.
Car show, pony rides, crafts and more!
ps: if there are other kid-friendly musical events you know of, comment below!
I will again be offering Hebrew Classes in 2019-2020 school year.
Here's the details:
NE Grand Rapids
September 9-December 9
(No class 9-30 & 11-25)
Beginning Biblical Hebrew class is for those with little or no previous experience with the Hebrew language. The goal is understanding the Hebrew scriptures on a more intimate level. This class uses a text written by the instructor, Karen Yonkers.
This is a 12 week course.
Class size: min. 5, max. 15
$120 per student for 12 hour-long classes ($10/week)
Pencils and notebooks provided.
I invite you to go to my new page: "Classes 2019/20" to view the new music classes I have created over the summer. Each class corresponds to my Session Theme of private lessons.
I am offering a discount of 15% on the classes for my students, as I believe these studies will enhance their appreciation and understanding of music.
My fall schedule is filling quickly! Make sure you have a spot. Email or call today to continue or start music lessons this year.
Karen Yonkers Music