A recent project from Sistema Toronto connected students with a local artistic tradition, Métis Fiddle Music, in order to expand their understanding of Indigenous music of the region.
Four powerhouses across the major performing arts disciplines co-wrote an op-ed early this summer about this critical moment for arts education. The New York Daily News piece, penned by Misty Copeland, Wynton Marsalis, Jody Gottfried Arnhold, and Russell Granet, calls on public schools in New York City to invest in equitable, high-quality arts instruction in their curricula. Though the writers take an NYC-centric view—expressing their disappointment in the city’s mishandling of a federal stimulus—they spotlight issues that will resonate with programs in any state: equity gaps in education, investment in teachers, and proper resource allocation in schools. Read the article via NYDN and be sure to share it with peers.
Coding is a popular buzzword in schools, especially when it comes to STEM education. If your tech-savvy students are also interested in coding, they may be excited to learn about EarSketch. This new learning tool is designed for teachers and students alike—helping students learn to code as part of their music-making process, and offering teachers a complete curriculum that includes teaching materials and resources. The service is free to use; visit their website to learn more.
Netflix has a new show that might interest your students: JIVA!, a dance-focused drama series produced in South Africa. The website okayafrica has compiled a list of the songs behind the show’s impressive dance routines, showcasing South Africa’s rich musical culture for audiences who may not be familiar. If our kids are staring at their screens, we may as well sneak some music education, and some dance-irresistible music, into their programming.
One Israeli man’s hobby became the world’s busiest Bach website. Aryeh Aron’s lifelong passion for music (especially jazz and Bach) turned his curiosity into a website that gets 15,000-20,000 visits a day. If you have a Bach question or curiosity, now you know where to go: The Bach Cantatas Website.
Decolonizing the Music Room has announced the first annual Fort Worth African American Roots Music Festival, happening online on Saturday, March 13, 2021, as part of their 2021 programming.
During the summer of 2020, a group of 20+ studio faculty chairs and other contributors from The Juilliard School created a list of “Music by Black Composers: An Introductory Resource.”
Americans for the Arts has launched a Cultural Equity Resource Center. Like their widely used Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resource Center, this will be updated regularly with information about programming, resources, and news to assist all in achieving our racial/social justice goals. They will keep adding to it—upcoming is a directory of equity consultants and service providers. If you have a resource to add, let them know.
The staff of Chamber Music America has compiled a collection of resources in support of Black Lives Matter to advance anti-racist work in the music community. You can also find BLM support resources from Creative Capital.
A new organization has been launched in the U.S. to address the racial inequities in music education. Decolonizing the Music Room is a non-profit organization that aims to use research, training, and discourse to help music educators center the voices and experiences of Black, Brown, Indigenous, and Asian people, challenging the historical dominance of white Western European and American music, narratives, and practices. In their own words: “We at DTMR aim to disrupt the minimization and erasure of non-dominant cultures and identities in the field of music education to build a more equitable future through our work.” Resources include suggested reading, podcasts, firsthand accounts from other music educators, video blogs, and more. We are resharing this The Ensemble resource for our international readers, as music educators across the world continue to look beyond the Western canon.