The UMass Lowell String Project is one of the best music education programs in the local area, so if you have a child who loves music, you should check it out! Read on for some FAQ’s that will help you learn more about this wonderful initiative.
What is String Project?
The String Project mainly teaches students how to play string instruments, but they learn so much more along the way. Students discover how music can build positive relationships with peers and within their community, as well as improve musicianship skills like critical listening and reading music. They are part of the National String Project Consortium, which is composed of more than 40 String Projects located at major universities all around the country. In 2014, the Consortium and the American String Teachers Association named UMass Lowell’s String Project the “String Project of the Year.”
Who can join?
This program works out of UMass Lowell’s Department of Music to provide excellent musical instruction to Merrimack Valley students in grades K-12. A select number of scholarships are available for students who may require financial aid to join.
Who runs the String Project?
UMass Lowell’s String Project is headed up by three excellent educators from the university: John-Morgan Bush, Executive Director; Dr. Gena Greher, Coordinator of Music Education; and Kay Roberts, Founding Director. Many college students from the university’s Music Education program also participate, from behind the scenes doing administrative work to on the front lines teaching classes.
What kinds of programs are available?
The String Project is composed of five ensembles and one creative music class.
- Prélude Ensemble—introductory group where students learn to hold instruments and bows and play scales in an ensemble setting
- Overture Ensemble—second-level group in which students continue to develop fundamental performance skills in smaller groups
- Creative Sound Play—a creative music class for students in Overture to learn how to compose original music, creatively utilize resources, and build their own musical experiences both alone and in group settings
- Accelerando Ensemble—serves students who start playing in middle school and students who require additional foundational support before auditioning into the String Sinfonia
- String Sinfonia—students perform more difficult music and begin to learn about musical aesthetics and theory
- Lowell Youth Orchestra—highest-level group composed almost exclusively of high school students who work with guest artists, commission original compositions, and perform complex musical literature for the community
What will my child learn?
The String Project has four main goals: to provide high quality string instrument instruction; to cultivate a lifelong love of music in students; to provide firsthand experience of how music builds positive relationships with peers and the community; and to offer UMass Lowell students the opportunity to become more effective music teachers.
If your child is interested in joining, please contact the UMass Lowell String Project by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 978-934-3867. You can also visit their website for more information.
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