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Calling All Student Composers: Student Composition Recital April 16th

Let's celebrate the ORIGINAL music of the piano students of LMK Studios. What better way than with a STUDENT COMPOSITION RECITAL? This recital will feature all original works from these creative kids of LMK Studios.

Save the date:

Sunday, April 16th, 2:30pm

This is not mandatory, only for students who wish to participate. Some students have already started composing their songs.

Not sure how to compose music?

There are many wants to write a song. It's similar to what students are learning in school about writing. Compositions evolve over time and through a series of drafts. The beginning of a song or composition often starts as a musical idea or "riff." As long as the student spends time growing and attending to that seed, it will grow into something fruitful that can be shared. Here's one process that we've that found works:

Step 1: practice improvising in your practice time. Improvising means to "make things up on the spot."

Step 2: when you find something you like in your improvisations, record it. Or write it down and bring it to the next piano lesson. For an example of how a student can write out musical ideas, see image below.

Students' work from left to right: "Wake up one day" by Morgan, "Flowers, How Beautiful," by Briony's, and "A Hobbit's Journey" by Thomas.

Step 3: Students will work with their teachers to make sense of and grow the composition. You might be surprised at the twists and turns that the song takes. Teachers guide students through a series of decisions: What key is this song in? What is the "home note" that will conclude the song and several musical phrases? Teachers help students add compositional touches like introductions and codas (endings). Over a few lessons,

Step 4: Notate:

Let's turn your song into proper music notation! Students can choose to work on this independently (see Morgan's song below) or with their teacher. LMK Studios teachers use noteflight, a free online music notation website. Some students have created their own online accounts to notate their songs independently as well.

Morgan began to notate her song independently.

Briony and Ms. Kelly input her composition into Noteflight notation software.

Step 5: Students continue to refine their compositions and practice for public performance.

Here are some examples of draft copies that are well on their way to becoming polished, songs to perform. You'll see the diversity of student compositions. Pieces can develop as songs that include lyrics (like Briony's and Morgan's songs) or instrumentals (like Thomas', Brooklyn's, and Henry's). Part of the fun is seeing just how these songs develop and grow over time. It's like gardening!

Here are some draft copies of songs that are in progress.

Briony's song has lyrics as well as a developed piano part.

Morgan's song is lyrics driven and is turning out more like a pop song that she will sing and play in performance.

Brooklyn's song is an instrumental piece. She is still deciding on the notes for the melody. Whatever becomes of this song, one thing is true: Be Very Scared!!!

Thomas' song, an instrumental, is mostly complete. The idea of a journey has guided his decision making.

Henry's song uses the E harmonic Minor scale as its backbone. The next step is to harmonize the melody with chords.

There's plenty of time for any student to participate in the Composition Recital on Sunday, April 16th. It's a learning experience and so much fun. If your child wants to participate, let your piano teacher know at the next lesson.


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