Music Education.…..It Works!

I had the good for­tune of working with the Mandan High School jazz ensemble (Mandan, North Dakota) this past weekend as part of their year ending jazz opus con­cert. This was my second oppor­tu­nity to work with this excep­tional pro­gram and both times it amazed me what a remark­able group of kids this pro­gram has pro­duced. The pro­gram is lead by a very tal­ented and inspired music edu­cator named John Warren. This was John’s final con­cert, cap­ping off an extra­or­di­nary 35 year career as a music educator.

On the flight back to New York, I began to reflect on how lucky I am to work with so many fine music pro­grams every year. While I strive to pro­vide some level of knowl­edge and inspi­ra­tion to all the stu­dents I work with, it is actu­ally the stu­dents them­selves that impart wisdom and exhil­a­ra­tion to all that we do as educators.

Mandan High School jazz ensemble 5.19.12

As the flight went along, I kept coming back to the same thought. Music edu­ca­tion is para­mount! To me, it’s the lifeblood of a well rounded and insightful edu­ca­tion. The number of studies sup­porting the role music has in a suc­cessful edu­ca­tional expe­ri­ence are too numerous to men­tion, but of course we must. Music stu­dents simply out­per­form non-music stu­dents in all facets of edu­ca­tion, aca­d­emic and otherwise.

Look at the joy on these young people’s faces. It comes from being a part of some­thing spe­cial, some­thing ener­gizing and some­thing fun. Music is all of that and then some. Sup­port music edu­ca­tion in your schools and give young people every­where the oppor­tu­nity to grow and find their pas­sion through music.

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