Inspiring a Love of Music, By Frank Battisti and Scott Rush

Jon Bubbett • Bubbett's BookshelfNovember 2023 • November 1, 2023

Imagine being at a conference for music educators and running into one (or more!) of the teaching/conducting/composing icons of our day! What would you ask them if you had the chance? What could you learn in the span of a brief introductory chat? Inspiring a Love of Music not only provides the questions for you in a thoughtful and meaningful manner, but it provides you with their responses! This book is another excellent resource for modern music educators gleaning from the experience and wisdom of several of the leading and most prominent music educators.

The book is divided into two sections. Part One deals with each contributor responding to questions and sharing their thoughts and insights as individuals. Part Two combines some of the contributors’ responses under one topic heading.

Part One

Each contributor responded to each of the following:

1. Describe what music means to you.

2. What should the making of music do for young students?

3. Describe the musical experience you provide for your students in your teaching.

4. What strategies do you employ to help students understand and feel/experience the “expressive power of music?”

5. Since “listening” is such a critical element in the “discovery” of making music, do you have specific strategies you use to develop this important skill with students?

6. How do you select music to use in your teaching? Do employee and criterion? If so, what are the priority factors in your evaluation and selection?

7. Name ten musical compositions you have used to create meaningful expressive music-making experiences for your students.

8. Are students offered opportunities to comment on the music selected for study, rehearsal, or performance?

9. Are students offered opportunities to comment on the way the music is interpreted?

10. What opportunities for creativity do you provide for your students within the music-making process?

11. How do you evaluate the comprehensive musical development of your students?

Part Two

This section shares additional insights and strategies from other successful music educators and ensemble conductors. Responses are combined into single topics that could easily be questions you might ask of these music education giants if you had the opportunity. The topics include:

The Personal Meaning of Music

How Music Making Affects Young Students

Providing Musical Experiences

Strategies for Musical Expression

Strategies for Active Listening

The Selection of High-Quality Music

The Collaborative Process

Creativity, Expression, and Imagination

The Music Educator/ Teacher

The Conductor/Ensemble Director

Final Thoughts

The list of contributors includes:

Sarah Ball – Orchestra – North Gwinnett Middle School – Gwinnett County, GA.

Scott Casagrande – Band – John Hersey High School (retired) – Arlington Heights, IL.

Lafe Cook – Band – Dobyns-Bennett High School – Kingsport,  TN.

Chuck Cushinery – Orchestra – Clark High School – Las Vegas, NV

Roy Holder – Band – Fairfax County Public Schools (retired) – Fairfax, VA

Mike Howard – Band – Vandegrift High School – Leander, TX

Chadwick Kamei – Band – Pearl City High School – Pearl City, HI

Alex Kaminsky – Band – VanderCook College of Music – Chicago, IL

Diane Koutsulis – Band – Green Valley High School (retired) – Henderson, NV

Scott Laird – Orchestra – The North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics – Durham, NC

Ed Lisk – Band – Oswego High School (retired) – Oswego, NY

Stephen Massey – Band – Foxboro Public Schools (retired) – Foxboro, MA

Elizabeth Reed – Orchestra – Miami University – Miami, OH

Jeff Scott – Band – Cairo Middle School – Mount Pleasant, SC

Andy Sealy – Band – Hebron High School – Carrollton, TX

Christopher Selby – Orchestra – School of the Arts – Charleston, SC

Kim Shuttlesworth – Band – Coppell High School – Coppell, TX

Susan Waters – Band – Oliver Middle School – Nashville, TN

Alfred L. Watkins – Band – Lassiter High School (retired) – Marietta, GA

Darcy Vogt Williams – Band – Stiles Middle School – Leander, TX

Inspiring a Love of Music not only gives you a glimpse inside the minds of some of our most accomplished educators/conductors, but it also will provoke introspection on the part of the reader. Comparing your responses to those of the contributors can be both educational and reaffirming.

Inspiring a Love of Music

Ideas, Insights, and Strategies from Successful High School and Middle School Instrumental Music Educators and Ensemble Directors

By Frank Battisti and Scott Rush

2022 • Meredith Music Publications • 179pp • $24.95

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