By Asha Spitzer
Q. What is your role in the Stanley Music Department?
I am the Director of Music Education. I have been teaching for 43 years, 33 years at Stanley. Along with Chorus, I teach 4 levels of band: Cadet, Bronze, Silver, and Symphonic. I also teach 2 Jazz bands; the Jazz Crusaders, and the Jazz Messengers and a Jazz Improvisation class.
Q. What is the best thing about teaching music?
The kids, because they are nice and very receptive. Also, I appreciate Mrs. Ginni Reynolds my Office Manager and Executive Assistant. She can solve any problem that comes up and has the student’s best interest in mind.
Q. What do you think are some of the most valuable things that students learn in music?
Students learn teamwork. They learn that music is science. They learn that music is mathematical. They learn that music is a foreign language. They also learn that music is not just all of these things, but also an art that helps us recognize community and become human. Without music and the arts, your education is not complete.
Q. How can students get connected with the music program?
They just need to enroll in a music class. If they are in elementary school, they can also join us at 7:20 a.m while we are having Jazz Band. While Jazz Band is in session, their parents can enjoy a free cup of coffee or tea of their choice. Also, parents can come by any time they want with or without their children to visit the music classes.
Q. What do like to do with your free time?
I like to practice the piano and play music professionally. I like to take walks, do garden work, and, I actually enjoy vacuuming. Also, I love to go see my grandchildren in New York and in Massachusetts.
Q. How does LPIE help the Stanley music department?
LPIE provides funding so I can hire musicians to help me during the school day. Mrs. Reynolds, my office manager is funded by LPIE, and LPIE also provides part of the music teachers’ salaries.
Q. Do you have anything to add?
I would like to add that it is very important in 2019 and this century that students play Music. Or, if they cannot play music or sing, that they are involved in the ARTS, because so much of our life is about technology, buttons, and devices. The ARTS are what make us human. Playing music expresses your deepest human emotions. When you play music with others, you are sharing your soul.