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Music Sessions

The three music areas of the Tennessee Arts Academy encompass the broad spectrum of choral, instrumental, and general music.  Instructors from around the country use their expertise to help participants enhance their skills and renew their enthusiasm for teaching.  In addition to the music sessions, all participants attend performances, musings, special events and other activities, with plenty of time built in for networking and reflection.

Tennessee Arts Academy 2024 Music Core Classes
Elementary/Lower Middle Music
Focus Areas: Arts Integration, Creative Drama, and Movement
Arts Integration, Creative Drama, and Movement is the focus area for the K – 6 elementary/lower middle theatre sessions. Each day participants will take classes in three areas of study that are especially designed for classroom generalist teachers, librarians, special education, physical education and gifted teachers. Arts Integration will help facilitate the learning process in traditional subject areas. Creative drama will focus on improvisational and non-performance aspects of theatre. A final daily class in movement and dance will be offered. All elementary theatre participants will attend all three classes.

Daily Core Classes

Every day, participants will attend each of the classes listed below.
Sing, Play, Audiate, Create! Activities to Foster Musical Independence
Instructor:
Julie Derges
Helping students learn audiation is foundational in their development as independent musicians. Audiation is the ability to comprehend musical sounds, similar to how we understand language. Using lessons inspired by Music Learning Theory, participants will discover how to develop audiation through playful activities involving singing, chanting, movement, instruments, and improvisation. Through these sessions, educators will learn a variety of activities to share with students, discover strategies to incorporate audiation into existing lessons, and collaborate with others to create memorable experiences.
Harmony In Sequence: From Pitch Matching And Sight Reading To Harmony For All
Instructor:
Ruth E. Dwyer
Come explore how the Kodály inspired classroom develops pitch matching, sight-reading, and harmonic skills through songs, musical games, active listening, and movement. Everyone has a voice! Participants will learn how reading music and singing harmony can be a natural part of language development throughout childhood. In these sessions, educators will explore ways to help students develop a love of singing simple melodies, playing musical games, and exploring music through movement. These experiences will become expressive choral singing as children grow and mature physically, cognitively, and emotionally. The sessions will also cover how to choose and teach beginning choral repertoire.
Delight Your Senses: Music, Movement, and Language
Instructor:
Jacque Schrader and Richard  Layton
This class will be a joyful experience in music and dance. There will be opportunities to challenge experienced Orff Schulwerk teachers, but beginners will also be engaged and comfortable. All activities are drawn directly from work with elementary and middle school students. The class will provide hands-on opportunities to explore music, movement, language, and stories and will also include discussions regarding appropriate curricular placement. Participants will explore playing pieces using the Orff instruments, as well as using the instruments to accompany songs, simple play parties, and games. The participants will also play small percussion instruments, including pieces for hand drums. Those who are comfortable should bring recorders of all voices.
Upper Middle/Secondary Music
The upper middle/secondary theatre sessions (7 – 12) include unique sessions each year in at least three of the following areas: acting, directing, improvisation, criticism, movement, playwriting and technical theatre. Instructors from around the country provide stimulating class sessions that reflect a mix of stage and performance techniques coupled with current trends and the latest research in arts education.

Daily Core Classes

Participants will follow either the vocal or instrumental track and attend two of the three classes listed below each day.
Essential Elements of the Secondary Choral Music Classroom
Instructor:
Felicia Barber
To successfully nurture a comprehensive choral music classroom, the conductor needs to create a positive learning environment, as well as constantly look for and add appropriate instructional tools to their tool box. This series of sessions will focus on varied topics, including a new perspective on the use of dialect in African American spirituals, which will include history and recommendations. Other sessions will include suggestions for fostering diversity in the choral classroom, working with an adolescent’s changing voice, choral conducting with the Laban Technique, and choral rehearsal strategies. A packet of accessible literature for elementary, middle school, and high school ensembles will be provided.
The 129th Army Band of the Tennessee Army National Guard
Special thanks to the 129th Army Band of the Tennessee Army National Guard for its assistance in providing personnel to perform with the TAA instrumental music participants. The band has a long and distinguished history serving Tennessee and the United States in peacetime and during armed conflict. It has performed for presidents, at world fairs, and overseas. The 129th Army Band is headquartered at Houston Barracks in Nashville, Tennessee, and has served as the official band for the Tennessee governor’s inaugural since 1937. The group is led by Chief Warrant Officer Billy Stepp and First Sergeant Tim Keyser.
Beginning With the End in Mind – Creating Musical Connections and Community Through the Large Ensemble Experience
Instructor:
Arris Golden
The most important musical moments that occur in the music classroom are those when students connect to the music being performed and to a shared musical experience. How can educators ensure that students are engaged in music making that builds skills and supports both artistry and understanding? During Academy core sessions, these questions will be explored via the lenses of rehearsal fundamentals, repertoire selection, score study, commissioning new music, community building, the concept of mindset in the music classroom, and other related topics.
The 129th Army Band of the Tennessee Army National Guard
Special thanks to the 129th Army Band of the Tennessee Army National Guard for its assistance in providing personnel to perform with the TAA instrumental music participants. The band has a long and distinguished history serving Tennessee and the United States in peacetime and during armed conflict. It has performed for presidents, at world fairs, and overseas. The 129th Army Band is headquartered at Houston Barracks in Nashville, Tennessee, and has served as the official band for the Tennessee governor’s inaugural since 1937. The group is led by Chief Warrant Officer Billy Stepp and First Sergeant Tim Keyser.
Guitar Class is Where It’s At!
Instructor:
Robert Russell Pethel
Guitar class can be a way to reach students with the gift of music. In this session, the basic needs to begin or maintain a guitar program will be covered. The first week of a new guitar class will be simulated with a hands-on approach. Among the topics to be explored are sound production, technical development, standard notation, iconic notation, melody, chords, ensemble music, and creativity. In addition, the guitar will be used to connect students with technology and explore resources, apps, and strategies that foster creativity in the music classroom. No prior guitar experience is necessary!
The 129th Army Band of the Tennessee Army National Guard
Special thanks to the 129th Army Band of the Tennessee Army National Guard for its assistance in providing personnel to perform with the TAA instrumental music participants. The band has a long and distinguished history serving Tennessee and the United States in peacetime and during armed conflict. It has performed for presidents, at world fairs, and overseas. The 129th Army Band is headquartered at Houston Barracks in Nashville, Tennessee, and has served as the official band for the Tennessee governor’s inaugural since 1937. The group is led by Chief Warrant Officer Billy Stepp and First Sergeant Tim Keyser.
Please check back regularly for updates and information about the 2024 Tennessee Arts Academy.
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