The Instrumental music program was established in 1967. Weekly private lessons are offered on a variety of band and orchestra instruments, with experienced teachers who care about each child learning with enjoyment and good form. Lessons are offered to children who show the desire and maturity to do home-study, of course, with parent encouragement. Lesson times may be scheduled before, during or after school hours. If during the school day, the time must be agreed upon by the parent, child and teacher. Lesson fees are arranged with the individual instructor. A discount is provided for students in the same family taking lessons.
The curriculum is based on a foundation of teaching the fundamentals of music reading; rote and ear training; music theory and history with an emphasis on correct position and form for playing each instrument. These concepts are taught in several styles: Classical, Pop, Jazz, American Folk and Sacred. Lessons are available on: violin, flute, clarinet, saxophone, cornet/trumpet, trombone, baritone horn, French horn, snare drum, and piano/keyboard. The child's age, size, physical characteristics and development may determine the choice of instrument. Instrument rental dealers may be provided upon request.
Several band concerts and recitals are presented during the school year. Recitals are scheduled after school for non-band instrument students. For those who choose a band/orchestra instrument, when proficiency is achieved, the student may join the St. Mary's School Band Ensemble which performs for the student body and at evening concerts.
Summer lessons are recommended to continue a child's music education throughout the year. If lessons are suspended, fundamentals are forgotten, skills are lost and good playing habits deteriorate. Many children show marked progress in the summer months. Summer music classes are offered at St. Mary's.
If you are new to St. Mary's and your child either plays an instrument and would like to participate in a school ensemble or if you need information regarding getting a child started in music lessons, please contact the school office. They will direct you to one of the music staff.