With contest and festival season in mind, here is a helpful teaching tip: prepare one piece ahead of time in the fall, put it away, and then bring it back before the festival.
There are many benefits to this approach:
- It can reduce the pressure on you and your students. Since festivals often happen about the time students are signing up for orchestra for the following year, this will allow time to work on retention.
- Having one piece that is “under their fingers” allows time to refine tone, interpretation, and a higher level of musicianship.
- This allows you to give students the opportunity to experience a piece with a more mature insight and heightened awareness.
However you decide to approach the 2014 contest and festival season, Alfred Music wishes you and your students the best!