We had a fantastic time at the Easter Piano Parties last week. Everyone got the chance to work on some performance skills by playing for the other students are we had a blast playing games such as pin the tail on the Easter bunny, rhythm egg and spoon race, piano musical chairs, Easter pass the parcel – piano style and the much-favoured chocolate game!
This terms group classes have been my favourite so far! We explored different ways of improvising and composing using the theme of water. Students very creatively brainstormed different types of water (from rivers and oceans to coffee machine water and water from a camel's hump!!) and the techniques we could use to turn those ideas into music. We then worked on some aural listening skills by analysing compositions about water (such as Chopin's Raindrop prelude, Jon Schmidt's Waterfall and Daniel McFarlanes Undercurrent) and students tried to guess what the compositions were about.
Students then got the chance to perform a piece of music they have been working on for their friends before we worked on individual improvisation skills. I would demonstrate an improvisation pattern and the students would then get a chance to work on it on their own keyboard before demonstrating what they had been working on for the class. We then got back to brainstorming and came up with some fantastic lists of composition titles and ideas (Fizzing Rain, Moonlight Mist and Explosive Aqua Lagoon to name a few) before they chose one idea to work on for their composition piece. I finished every class amazed by the students creativity, sharing and positive encouragement of each other, it was a wonderful week of lessons filled with lots of smiles, giggles and even a few dance moves from one class!
The Piano Performance Dinner was a chance for students of all age to perform background music for their families and friends and enjoy a shared dinner and games. Students had also been working hard on a practice-a-thon to raise money for the Australian Children's Music Foundation and this night was also a celebration of their achievements and a chance to recognise the students who excelled in their practising and fundraising. Together everyone practised for over 6000 minutes for the 3 weeks the practice-a-thon ran and raised over $600. The trophy and certificate winners were:Most Money Raised
1st Place: Riley with $99
2nd Place: William and Jasper with $50 each
3rd Place: James with $45
1st Place: Jade with 711 minutes
2nd Place: James with 540 minutes
3rd Place: Riley with 534 minutes