Week of September 11, 2017/Class #1

September 13, 2017/Rehearsal#4
September 15, 2017
Intermediate Blog # 4 Thursday September 14th
September 15, 2017

Week of September 11, 2017/Class #1

Monday Prep 3 (Lori) – Class #1

Dear Monday Prep 3 Parents,

Welcome to the 2017-2018 season of Cantabile.  We are thrilled to have you as part of our musical family!  I thoroughly enjoyed meeting all of your young singers on Monday and am looking forward to a productive, fun semester.

  • In our first class, we learned a fun welcome song, Jikeleza, and explored how to make the song end on the scale step “Do.”  See if your singer can teach you the song – the only lyrics to remember are “Throw, Catch, Jikeleza (Xhosa for “turn around”)” and “na-na-na-na-etc.”
  • Next we began to learn each other’s names (so important in an ensemble!) by playing the Name Game.  A surprise thrown in in the middle of the game reminded us that sometimes unexpected things happen in a performance, but if we remain calm and work together, we can accomplish our goals.
  • The Posture Rap helped us to find good singing posture.  Have your singer review it this week:

Shoulders are down, feet firmly on the ground

With slightly bended knee.

Spine is long and ready for a song

My arms are hanging free

Lifting of the chest helps me breathe my best

Now there’s just one last thing:

Hold my head upright and focus my sight

Now I am ready to sing!

  • We began to explore the major scale, recognizing that the scene in The Sound of Music where Maria teaches the Von Trapp children to sing is an actual method of teaching singing that we will use in Cantabile!  The steps of the major scale in “Solfege” are:


Have your singer practice the scale this week by using the song from the musical, “Do-Re-Mi”, found on YouTube here.

  • We began to get familiar with the first song in our repertoire, The Dance of the Willow, by reading through the text.  Here is a lovely recording you may listen to.
  • We ended our time together with a fun rhythm game.  We will play many games this semester designed to develop an inner sense of steady beat and ability to execute rhythmic patterns while keeping that beat steady.

Please remember to bring your Prep 3 folder with you each week.  We will be giving you instructional materials, worksheets and music to use in each class and at home for practice.

Have a wonderful weekend!


 Tuesday Prep 3 (Amy) – Class #1
It was so wonderful to see returning singers and meet so many new singers this week! I am very excited for a wonderful semester of Prep 3. Thank you to the parents who were able to stay and attend the brief orientation.  If you were not able to stay, please be sure to read through the FAQ’s and other documents sent home in your child’s folder this week.
We started our time together with a folk song and movement activity, “Old Brass Wagon.” We used this song later in the class as a rhythm review activity and notated the rhythm of the entire song on the board. This allowed us to review the rhythms ti-ri-ti-ri (sixteenth notes), ta (quarter note) and ti-ti (eighth notes) and work on our music writing skills.
We learned the name game song “Up the Ladder” that includes a fun body percussion part. The singers did a great job doing the percussion, singing, and learning each other names! We’ll do this again next week to help us remember everyone’s names and work on maintaining an internal sense of steady beat.
Once we got to know each other a bit, we got our bodies and voices focused and ready to sing and learn! We talked about good singer’s posture, breathing for singing, and some different vowel/mouth shapes we use when singing. We then jumped in to a review of solfege syllables and hand signs as we learned the song “Sea Shell.” We went on to sing the song on solfege syllables, on text, and as a canon. It was so great to hear Prep 3 singing in two parts on the very first day!
We also started to learn our first choral piece, “Bashana Haba’ah,” a two-part Hebrew song about wishing for good things to come in the new year.
Finally, we ended our time together with the game “Billy, Billy,” which we will play again next week!
Please be sure that your child brings their folder to class every week. We will be doing some worksheets and distributing music and other information.

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