JMTA High Notes
April 2020—Vol. 23, no. 7
There is no April JMTA General Meeting this month
From the President’s Pen
…And we thought teaching music lessons could not get more exciting!
Hello to all of you captive teachers. How fortunate that we have had some recent programs incorporating online lessons. Now is a great time to use some of the suggestions gleaned from Diana Dumlavwalla, Josh Mills and Lori Rhoden.
You should have received some excellent resources from MTNA’s recent emails. If you have not read through these, please do. I have watched a few of the webinars from MTNA and the Frances Clark Center. All are free. There are some practical online teaching tips in many of these. I also have been scouring the Smithsonian museum website and listening to some of the free programs from the JAX Symphony, The Met and other sources. The sky is the limit. Take advantage of these as you have time.
There are so many resources to incorporate art from all periods all over the globe and share it with students. I want to guide students-young and old- to make connections between music and poetry, music and art, music and the theatre. Helping a student look at a painting to find patterns and the use of color also aids them in finding patterns and color (expressions) in their music. Sounding out the rhythmic cadence in lines of poetry can have a direct link to the rhythm patterns within phrases.
So, here we are exploring new ways to reach our students, to entice them with poetry, art and music. These “may be the times that try (our) souls” but I believe we can use this interruption of normal routines to enrich our teaching, improve our personal skills on the piano, flute, etc.… enjoy our families and plan away for future events.
There will not be a meeting in April but stay tuned for May. I hope the COVID 19 is under control by May and we can catch up at our end of the year luncheon.
Stay safe and enjoy your music.
Dr. Anita Boyle Renfroe, NCTM
JMTA General Meeting Minutes
Wednesday, March 11, 2020, Keyboard Connection
Present: Anita Renfroe, Stefanie Batson-Martin, Denise Homsley, Lisa Barwell, Paulette Kilts, Joan Cordell, John Willard Utuk, Sandra Roberts, Erin Bennett, Kamila Shahtakhtinski, Michael Mastronicola, Angie Holt, Ron Touchton
Call to Order: (Anita) 9:38am
Last month’s minutes read: (Stefanie)
Treasurer’s Report: (Lorie Burningham)
Historian: (Lynn Roberts) Not here
Programs: (Michael Mastronicola)
Student Recitals: (Sandra Stewart and Gavin Taylor)
- Submitted by Stefanie Batson-Martin
COVID-19 Pandemic: Resources to Help
As we all go through this unprecedented time with the COVID-19 coronavirus, our thoughts are with all of our music teachers and students and everyone in the community and around the world.
While our state is under a stay-at-home order as we wait this out, many of us have turned to online lessons during this time. For assistance with giving lessons online, you can reference the March 24th email from FSMTA president Anna Fagan, as well as the helps mentioned in Dr. Renfroe’s article above.
You can also go to our website, Jaxmta.org, and click on the "Links" page. Once there, scroll down to 'Links to Set Up Online Lessons' for some helpful articles. If anyone would like to add a resource that they found beneficial at this time, please contact Angie Holt at firstname.lastname@example.org. Hoping everyone stays safe and well.
JMTA Treasurer Transaction Monthly Report | March 1 - March 31, 2020
Premier Business Checking Total
03/15/20 MTNA Dues $50.00
03/21/20 MTNA Dues $25.00
03/31/20 Interest (Business shares) $0.40
11/30/19 Interest (Money Market) $1.12
11/30/19 Interest (CD) $12.46
TOTAL INCOME $88.98
Current Checking $4,291.20
Piano Festival Fund
(add to Business Shares Acct) $3,326.76
Warren Fund $1,527.73
TOTAL Checking Account
as of February 29, 2020 $9,145.69
Business Money Market (Scholarship) $3,274.17
Business Shares (Festival)
(add to amt in chking) $1,645.56
22-Month CD (matured 3/31/2020)
- Now in Bus. Sh. $7,120.78 added to Bus. Shares
TOTAL as of March 31, 2020 $12,040.51
TOTAL ASSETS as of March 30, 2020 $21,186.20
- Submitted by Lorie Burningham 04/02/20
PROTON THERAPY RECITAL CANCELLED
The community recital at the Proton Therapy Institute downtown to be held on Tuesday, April 7, has been cancelled.
Please welcome our new JMTA member!
Anna Maria Smith
DISTRICT IV NEWS
2020 District IV Student Day
The certificates and medals from the 2020 District IV Student Day will be handed out at the May JMTA General Meeting if there is one held, otherwise an announcement will be made via email and Facebook in how they will be safely distributed to the teachers. Thank you.
Over Coffee With . . .
MICHAEL MASTRONICOLA, D.M.A.
Michael is currently the Programs Chair for our organization, finding many exciting workshops for our general meetings.
Q: First, please tell us a little bit about yourself.
A: I was born and raised in New York State, just 40 miles north of NYC. I went to school at Ithaca College, worked for a time in Rochester, NY as a music teacher and staff accompanist at the city's School of the Arts; then attended graduate school at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where I studied with Howard Karp. From 2000-2010, I lived in Boulder, CO, working there and then attending graduate school at UC-Boulder, where I studied with Andrew Cooperstock. I have been living in Jacksonville since 2010.
Q: What made you want to start piano lessons as a child and what inspired you to make music your life-long career?
A: Just down the street from my childhood home lived the "neighborhood" piano teacher, Janet Voss. I began lessons with her and, after a few years, I found myself enjoying the process of learning music, and wanted to learn more and more classical repertoire. Being able to sightread all kinds of music as well as play for and accompany singers and choirs in high school felt very empowering to me. I began learning cello and trombone by the ninth grade and I liked being singled out as a student that really loved music and was reasonably good at it!
Q: What do you find to be a challenge in teaching piano and how do you suggest meeting that challenge?
A: Teachers are 'parrots' in that they say and do the same thing over and over again--to every student, and often to the same student. The challenge is to find endless ways to teach many of the same concepts. Finding joy in developing new ways to engage a student in a holistic way, and exploring new ideas of imagery and creative activities at the piano are a challenge but also an opportunity to feel rejuvenated and positive toward teaching. There's a wealth of information to help us do that: countless posts and videos on social media that detail other teacher's ideas; magazines like The Piano Magazine/ Clavier Companion; and groups like MTNA and JMTA. Take a 'new' idea and make it your own!
Q: Do you have a story of something that happened during one of your performances and how you handled it?
A: I'll never forget a concert during my undergrad studies in which I began performing Liszt's Un sospiro and the grand piano began moving away from me every time I pedaled. The wheels weren't locked! I cut the piece short in order to be done as quickly as possible and left the stage. Ever since then I always make sure the piano wheels are locked beforehand! For awhile, when I was performing more often at different, unfamiliar locations, I used to have wooden blocks--like door jams--that I could push up against the wheels just in case the locks were ineffective or there weren't any!
Q: What advice would you give to help focus before a performance and curb nerves?
A: Performance anxiety is such a common problem, and many of us hate to admit to it. I work with my students on the concept that Bill Moore discusses: the difference between 'confidence' and 'trust.' Instead of focusing on individual confidence, we need to know that we can trust ourselves no matter what happens, so we think, "A memory slip or mistake very well may happen, but I trust myself to handle it." Trust in oneself to handle problems is more important--or equally important--than "confidence." Beyond this, I think forcing ourselves to have a pre-planned memory slip during practice, and then working our way through it--by "improvising" as best we can or skipping forward--until we get back on track, is a great way to build that trust in oneself and minimize anxiety. 'Practicing pre-planned' slips by handling them before a performance can be helpful in this way.
Q: What is one of the most interesting places you have visited or lived in, and why?
A: I took part in a musical tour of Bulgaria fifteen years ago, and it changed my life. I met so many wonderful people--young and old--and realized how all of us want the same thing: good health, safety, food, to be cared for and loved.
COMPASSIONATE MUSIC SERIES
Do some of your students need Community Service Hours? Community Hospice has begun a music series at their facility on Sunbeam Road. There is a "Music Minors" performance program for teen volunteers who wish to play piano for an hour in the patients wing on Sunday afternoons. Anyone wishing for more information please contact Sandy Stewart, email@example.com.
- Sandra Stewart, D.M.A.
Find A Teacher Section on Jaxmta.org
Please take a moment to check out your information on the Find a Teacher page of our website. If you would like to edit, add, or delete your information, please send whatever you would like changed to Internet Media Chair Angie Holt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have you found us on Facebook?
Follow JaxMTA on Facebook for the latest happenings, photos, videos, and more!
Need a Sponsor?
Does anyone in the JMTA need a sponsor or need help in any way? If so, John Scott, owner of Great Scott Music School, is interested in helping our organization. If interested, contact John at email@example.com.
Do you have too much music collected in your studio? Is there some you think you'll never use? Let's have a music exchange! Bring your unwanted music to any JMTA meeting. Bring home something new to you! Look for the "Free Music" spot. Music does not have to be brand new.
Please view our website for any updates or additions to these events, as well as for more details including application deadlines: www.jaxmta.org.
Proton Therapy Student Recital – upper interm. /advanced students
UF Health Proton Therapy Institute, 2015 N. Jefferson St., 32206
JMTA General Meeting followed by Program: Concerto Winners will perform
Keyboard Connection, 9912 San Jose Blvd., 32257
(Still Scheduled at This Time)
JMTA General Meeting following by end-of-year luncheon
Keyboard Connection, 9912 San Jose Blvd., 32257
Stay tuned for more events to come! High Notes is distributed on the 1st of the month excluding June-August and December. All submissions are due by the 20th of the month prior to distribution. Submissions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.