The Great Falls Symphony's introductory lesson program
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About the project
The Sound Foundations is a project initiated and led by the Great Falls Symphony Association (GFSA) in partnership with the Great Falls Public School District (GFPS). This program is made possible by the Montana Arts Council's Arts In Schools and Communities Grant.
The purpose of the Sound Foundations project is to give young musicians access to learning opportunities that develop and refine fundamental techniques on their musical instrument.
We recognize that strong fundamental music skills enable students to:
successfully learn new techniques
increase their enjoyment of music
have positive experiences that encourage continued, long-term study of music
Strong fundamental skills
Beginners will develop a foundation in fundamental skills and techniques for their musical instrument. Intermediate learners will refine fundamental techniques where needed. For string players, this includes reading and understanding music notation, good posture, how to properly hold the instrument and bow, and how to create a good tone. For wind and brass players, this includes reading and understanding music notation, proper posture for air support, embouchure (the way in which a player applies the mouth and facial muscles to the mouthpiece of a brass or wind instrument), and key/finger technique.
Practice routines for success
All students will learn how to develop a productive home music practice routine that supports progress, enjoyment, and achievement of goals. Each class meeting will cover specific practice techniques and take-home assignments to support this objective.
Self-evaluation and communication
Students will learn to observe and critique their own practice and performance so that they may learn to articulate challenges and problems in their playing, apply teaching points, solve problems, recognize their own successes, and create their own learning strategies. Students will also observe and evaluate other participants for the purpose of giving peers constructive feedback.
Getting beginner musicians off to a strong start
Sound Foundations offers Beginner Group Classes for violin, viola, cello, bass, flute, oboe, Students have the opportunity to have their first music lesson experience with a teaching artist who specializes in their instrument.
Sound Foundations faculty
We have chosen teachers from our Core Ensembles because each one of these individuals has extensive professional experience as performers and educators and they have been vetted through a competitive audition process which draws applicants from around the globe. Participating in the Sound Foundations program means your child has the opportunity to learn from a world class musician!