KSO partners in new education initiative, “Orchestra Rouh,” to serve refugee children

April 25th, 2017 by Jason Barber

The Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra is pleased to announce a new education initiative serving children of refugee families recently resettled in Kalamazoo. Orchestra Rouh offers regular, ongoing music instruction to children of Syrian and other refugee families. Rouh means both “hope” and “spirit” in Arabic, and the program is designed to nurture the emotional wellbeing of children through music instruction, led by teachers who are bilingual in English and Arabic, and including music from Arabic traditions.

String instruments for the program have been generously provided by Meyer Music of Kalamazoo, and Suzuki Academy of Kalamazoo is donating rehearsal space. The Irving S. Gilmore Foundation has provided start-up funding, and additional grant applications are pending.

Click here for more information about this program or to learn about how you can help.





WMU Trumpet Day feat. Rex Richardson

March 23rd, 2017 by Jason Barber

Hosted by WMU trumpet faculty, Trumpet Day features free clinics, master classes and performances and is open to anyone interesting in learning more about the trumpet. Events run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday, March 17th in the Dalton Center Recital Hall on WMU’s main campus. Online registration is required at http://wmich.edu/music/trumpet-day. (Sturgeon, WMU News, 3/3/17)

Representatives from Meyer Music Kalamazoo will be present at the event, offering students and parents the opportunity to see what our stores have to offer.

Rex Richardson is a Yamaha Performing Artist and a veteran of the acclaimed chamber group Rhythm & Brass, the Brass Band of Battle Creek, and jazz legend Joe Henderson’s Quintet and Sextet. He teaches trumpet, jazz improvisation and chamber music at Virginia Commonwealth University and an is an international trumpet tutor for the Royal Northern College of Music in England. He tours throughout the year as a clinician, recitalist and soloist with orchestras, wind ensembles, big bands and brass bands. (Sturgeon, WMU News, 3/3/17)


Photo courtesy of rexrichardson.com

Photo courtesy of rexrichardson.com

112th Annual Michigan Music Conference

January 3rd, 2017 by ifi-admin

MMC2011postcardThe 12th Annual Michigan Music Conference is being held right here in Grand Rapids this January. This exciting event is an in-service for music educators and serves as a coordinating body for collaborative, inner-association initiatives in support of school music in Michigan.

The conference will feature school ensemble concerts, performances from Honors Choirs, All-State Bands and orchestras alongside several sessions for in-service and pre-service teachers, professional development clinics, and hands on technology workshops. It’s the nationally known annual conference for everyone and everything involved in music education!

The Michigan Music Conference will be held January 19-21, 2017 at the DeVos Place, Amway Grand Plaza Hotel, and J.W. Marriott. Click here more information on the event.

It’s All in the Bow

August 5th, 2014 by ifi-admin

Woman playing violinAchieving auditory perfection for string musicians takes time, maturity and discovery. Through all the complexities, being aware of what you are playing and reaching sophisticated auditory skill is one of the most crucial steps in improving weak or irregular tone. Reaching the tone you desire and finding that perfect blend between vibrato, tone and pitch takes shifting your focus to the foundation: the bow.

Try this simple, two-step plan provided by Strings Magazine to improve your tone:

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Advocacy for the Arts

July 26th, 2014 by ifi-admin

The benefits of incorporating music into education go beyond enhanced creativity and classroom involvement. Research has found that music triggers higher brain activity, an increased IQ, improved language development and a slight link to improved spatial-temporal skills. Students learning music naturally tap into multiple skill sets; using ears, eyes, and large and small muscles simultaneously, for example, isn’t easy and requires concentration, fine tuned motor skills and plenty of practice. In terms of found that schools with music programs have a higher attendance and graduation rate by nearly 10 percent in both categories.

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