September 2, 2019

I’ve read or heard this phrase more than I wish to, and it’s time to be the elephant in the room and share some humble truths about ‘good’ wind band music. To do this, I draw an analogy to the uprise of Impressionist Art as I believe many parallels, and lessons, can be...

July 15, 2019

In more recent months, I have noticed an abundance of posts in music educator Facebook groups that pertain to student dedication (or lack thereof) and behavioural issues. Mostly, teachers are frustrated with students’ lack of dedication to their ensemble, not turning u...

April 26, 2019

If  I ran a poll to ascertain the 5 top words used in conjunction with "wind band repertoire" I'm pretty sure that "quality" would be high on the list. Quality may be closely followed by "artistic", "merit" and "excellence".  Perhaps you can think of others? These...

February 25, 2019

I’m 48 years old. Life is rich in so many ways. I have the most beautiful, supportive husband by my side. A daughter I dreamed of and the career I so desperately wanted.

But I'm not 'happy' ... So what’s wrong?

Well, the dream isn’t all it's cracked up to be. I live...

February 24, 2019

“Why this cold-shouldering of the wind band by most composers? Is the wind band – with its varied assortments of reeds (so much richer that the reeds of the symphony orchestra), its complete saxophone family that is found nowhere else ... its army of brass – not the eq...

June 27, 2018

Sugar has become a socially acceptable addictive substance that can be used as anything from a bribe to hug. But is it doing more harm than good? Children in particular have a special relationship with the sweet stuff. In fact, from an early age, sugar is used as a par...

February 6, 2018

Let me explain...

By brain-dead I don't mean stupid, or incapable; I mean over-worked. The Brain-Dead Band Director is the one who is running, constantly, trying to catch their own tail whilst keeping everyone else afloat. The Brain-Dead Band Director is a consummate po...

January 8, 2018

Letter from Sado was commissioned as part of the BandQuest series in 2014. Since then it has received hundreds of unique performance around the world - but many Directors are still frightened to try it. Don't be! There are many creative opportunities in this Grade 3 wo...

December 21, 2017

I’m sitting here in Vancouver, waiting to board an aircraft to take me home to Australia. It’s been an extraordinary week that has included two world premières, a recording session, a professional development seminar with local teachers and workshops with local schools...

November 6, 2017

In my first year of University, my composition teacher Larry Sitsky introduced me to the inimitable composer Harry Partch. Partch had his own set of ears; meaning he heard music very differently to everyone else. Instead of utilising 12 semitones in one octave, Pa...

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