Our music instructors Gina Patrick and Jim Olden generated excitement and enthusiasm at the grade-level clinics they held during the first two weeks of school. The two teachers offered students the opportunity to listen to and try out a variety of instruments from bells to trumpets to violins. (Click here to view pictures.)
The cello was a hit, particularly when Mr. Olden played the ‘most famous two-note sequence in history’ – the two ominous notes from “Jaws.” Not to be outdone, Ms. Patrick played the same sequence on a member of the brass family -- the trombone.
The clinics kicked-off a new instrumental music offering in which all 4th, 5th, and 6th grade elementary students will have the opportunity to participate with either band instruments or strings.
Under the direction of Jim Olden, Orange has had a successful strings program for a dozen years. Last fall, a band program was implemented, offering limited lessons and performance opportunities. Each school had nine instructional slots available. The students who participated made remarkable progress during the year and played together at a Board of Education meeting in May. Following that performance, we received emails from parents expressing their happiness that the kids had made such remarkable progress and urging us to continue the band program this year.
If that end of the year performance was any indication, it is well within our district’s capacity to offer a highly successful band program -- in a model very similar to our strings program -- and for the two music programs to work collaboratively side-by-side. The newly-expanded band program will be directed by Gina Patrick.
Parents should contact the school to get more information about enrolling their child in the strings or band program and renting an instrument. Students in 4th – 6th grades will have one lesson per week on a rotating schedule. First year students will be grouped by instrument for their lessons and come together in a beginner’s performance group. Students with one or more years of experience will be grouped either by instrument or ability level and will participate in a concert performance group. All performance groups, strings and band, will have several opportunities to perform in public.
Click here to view pictures.