We wanted to say THANK YOU SO MUCH to Viva Musica! You've improved our music classroom by giving us the gift of new instruments to use! They're delightful. We are so appreciative for your donations.
Pictured here are one of the 3rd grade classes, Mrs. Reissy, Mr. Nyembwe (principal), and myself.
St. Paul City School
We received a WONDERFUL Thank you note from the students and teachers of St. Paul City School + a PHOTO! We love it, and THANK YOU! Thank you for being creative and keeping music alive! Go forth and create! We feel honored to be able to be a part of supporting your creative endeavors as part of your education in school.
We are proud to announce that BOTH drum sets and a clarinet have found a home!! The school year is just beginning and we have more instruments to give away! A trombone, clarinet, and flute. Who will be the lucky recipients?
APPLY HERE! http://www.vivamusica.org/teachers-corner.html
Becca Michaelson, Music Specialist at St. Paul City School
"My name is Becca Michaelson and I am the music specialist at St. Paul City school. I work at both our middle school and our primary school campuses and I see all our K-8 students. I teach band, sectionals, general music, and piano lessons on my lunch breaks.
Having an instrumental music background, I try to incorporate as much instrument playing as possible, given our limitations. Our collection of instruments is bleak, disheveled, and many have missing pieces. My mallet heads are secured by tape. They get re-broken daily- not because my students are banging on them, but because they're literally hanging on by a thread. Teaching any concept on the barred instruments becomes a frustrating, length experience because only 1/3 of the students are playing at once. Every child should have a barred instrument so we can play together and be united in music. I would like to have more of a variety of instruments such as alto and bass xylophones, glockenspiels, djembes, and boomwhackers. This would greatly help me teach about texture, harmony, tone color, and different musical parts. These concepts are in the state standards and I am having difficulty teaching them with the materials I have.
This year I brought recorders back because they weren't taught last year. I had the students buy their own. Remember, my students come from high poverty so I picked recorders that were only $2 each- not the greatest sounding but also not a financial hardship. Many of my students brought me the $2 in quarters, dimes, and even nickels. That shows me that they are taking ownership of their learning. When I gave them their recorder that they paid for with their own money, their faces lit up. They were so excited! I remember their faces then and I am trying to imagine what their faces will look like when they see brand new instruments that you are helping us purchase. They'll be floored! These new instruments will bring magic to my music class. My students already love when it's an instrument playing day. They are more focused because the reward is creating their own mostly beautiful sounds. They want to play. They want to be heard.
I work in a small charter school in the poorest, most diverse neighborhood in St. Paul with the bare minimum of materials and space. We do what we can with what we have and each success is so much sweeter because we have so little and we work so hard. My students deserve a rich musical education. Help me give that to them. Your donations tonight, big or small, will go towards enriching the lives of precious at-risk children.
What an honor it is to be here and to be the recipient of this year's Viva Musica grant. From myself and my fellow staff, you have our sincere gratitude for giving new life to my music class. Thank you Viva Musica for all that you do and thank YOU for being here tonight to support MUSIC. Thank you."
Becca Michaelson, Music Specialist at St. Paul City School and recipient of Viva Musica's 2014 Music Grant
Our updated 2014 Instrument Drive Flyer has been RELEASED!! Check it out and DOWNLOAD it here. POST it, EMAIL it, PRINT it, HAND IT OUT, SHARE anyway you can! Help us collect gently used or new instruments in working condition to put in the hands of children in local schools who need them! KEEP CREATIVITY ALIVE!! Find out more about our Instrument WISH LIST, Art Supplies WISH LIST and how you can help HERE.
Congratulations to Julie! Our VERY FIRST Lucille Project Apprentice!
Recently Viva Musica launched a fun new project..
The Lucille Project - Viva Musica's Guitar Apprenticeship Program.
Viva Musica is looking for the 5 best “Under 20” guitar players. Rick at LaDoten Custom Guitars will be
custom building 5 guitars for our 5 Lucille Project Apprenticeship Grant Winners!
The first deadline was Aug.1st 2013 - and our Winner has been selected!
Congratulations to Julie our Lucille Project Apprentice!
Julie did an exceptional job on your essay and video. Thank you so much for your love of music and the guitar Julie! It really shows! We truly enjoyed your video, and the part about the name of your guitar and what it means is FANTASTIC! Wylie.. what a great name! We can't wait to find out what you name your new LaDoten Custom Guitar!
We have 4 more LaDoten Custom Guitars up for grabs.. could you be the next winner? The entry deadline for the next Lucille Project Apprentice is Oct. 1st 2013. Our 2nd winner will be announced at our MOA Scavenger Hunt Oct. 5th!
Julie will be in attendance to receive her custom made guitar! We hear she has selected a natural colored guitar...
she says.. "I really like rustic and folk looking guitars because it's one of my favorite musics to play
(which is why I like natural). No matter what color it is, I will cherish it."
We can't wait to see what Rick at LaDoten Custom Guitars creates!
Click on the graphic below to download an application and find out more about The Lucille Project application process.
Wanna know what it takes to be a Lucille Apprentice?
Check out what Julie said the wowed the judges!
(Excerpts from Julie's essay - To view her full essay, click here.)
"... I cherish music so much because it is another language; sure it’s not a flick of the tongue or a verbal language, but its spiritual. You can meet a complete stranger and from music you know them. You understand people on a different level based on the type of style they play, or what instrument they’re involved with. If I’m in a bad mood I grab my guitar and play the minor chords, inventing songs that have slow picking patterns. Or if I’m in a better mood, I strum the happier array of chords or pluck a warm tone. That fact leads on with any feeling, angry, confusion, or anything
"... I admire everything to do with guitar and I am greatly proud to be a musician. I love how the frets feel when I slide my fingers across them or how the strings sound when plucked. It is truly my favorite thing in the universe; every second I can spend playing, I do."
"... Another fact why I adore guitar is that you’re never completely finished learning. There’s always a song you don’t know, or a style or music you’re not absorbed in. I’m exhilarated by the thought that there’s never an end to guitar; I constantly learn new things and boredom never strikes because there’s thousands or tabs, hundreds of artists and millions of notes and chords, it’s fantastic. You can master a sport and be the best basketball player ever and know every shot or move possible, because the sport has rules and limitations to what can or cannot be done. Guitar does not have limits, there’s risk taking individuals throughout history who have created new styles or ways to execute guitar like Merle Travis or B.B King."
"... When I’m alone in my room with my guitar it’s my favorite time of my day. I can escape all the stress in my life, I play guitar before a nerve racking test and in my opinion I excel on my tests because of this. Guitar makes me happy, after I complete a song I’ve been working strenuously for days I am immediately put into an excellent mood. Just hearing guitar heightens my senses and makes my life all the better. Without guitar I picture myself being bored most of the time, majorly tense, and just unhappy."
"... The music I enjoy most is either folk styled music where guitars are featured with interesting finger picking or strumming patterns or the other style I absolutely adore is warm rich jazz with bends and riffs. When I hear a guitar talk or cry I close my eyes and am exported; I like to think of it as a six dimension where emotions of songs tumble over hard edged rocks and fall to a white water pool beneath but the stream out flowing from it is both mighty and calm."
"... I think it is hugely important for music and music education to be taught in the Minnesota School system. The first reason it is important is because I started off in my school. I was given the opportunity to have guitar classes in my middle school, and I was blessed with a very talented and optimistic teacher. If many students have the option to promising music teachers and music theory they can exceed in multiple things. I recently worked on a project in school about how music affects your mind. Studies have shown that music boosts your creativity, happiness, and your language skills. It reduces anxiety and decreases pain. It has been shown that students who are involved with music generally have higher tests scores and earn more academic awards. School systems don’t understand enough how beneficial music is to their students."
Julie, it is an honor to be able to give you this guitar and help you out in your journey in music and as a musician... Clearly you have a passion for the guitar, music and it's benefits to students and how it enriches one's life. Thank you for your support of Viva Musica and our Mission. It's because of students like you we do what we do!
Stay up to date with everything Viva Musica is doing and achieving! Events, Fundraisers, Giveaways and More! Helping keep Music in our schools!