Studio Notes-Winter 2015

Hi all–just a couple quick things.

  • I am tentatively planning our recital date to be Friday night, June 5.  I will be setting up the venue soon, so please let me know if for any reason that date does NOT work for you.  Also, I would love your opinions on which you prefer–a more formal venue (a la Friendship Village) or a more relaxed venue that we can do a reception (like last year).  It’ll depend what’s available, of course, but I’d love to know what you guys value as I set it up.
  • Many of the students are accumulating a lot of Music Points from their practice 🙂  Just a reminder, if you want to redeem Music Points, please let me know in the lesson so we can count off how many you have, and then please email me if you don’t mind so I remember to send you the credit!  Often when I go home it’s into the bedtime whirlwind and I try to get back to my teaching notes in a timely fashion, but sometimes I forget…as some of you know…so please do not ever feel bad reminding me  🙂
  • Related to that, there is now a Music Picks page up on the sidebar with a ton of ideas for great music you can choose with your points.  You are not limited to what’s there but there is a ton of good stuff there if you need any ideas!

Thanks so much–a wonderful weekend to you all!

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We’re Back!

Well, not just yet.  September 29 will be the first date for our fall lessons and I’m excited to see you all!  I hope everyone has had a fabulous summer and is ready to get back to new music and practice goals!

Over this month, I’ll be putting up info for this year’s contests–some familiar, some new and improved  🙂  I’m planning:

  • A scale contest, with a new element added for those who are in 3-octave scales
  • A similar practice contest to last year, but with an emphasis on ercording and organizing your practice–and if I can figure out how to make it work, digital music prizes! 🙂
  • A listening “contest”–not sure if this will really be a contest, but more of an extra/enrichment opportunity through the website

I am hoping to make the website more interactive this year, with things like listening links, practice tips, and links to any articles that I think are worth your time. I’d really like this to be a helpful and fun resource for the students and parents both and welcome your feedback on making it better.  So, stay tuned (literally!) and see you in a month! 🙂

Studio Notes-May 2014

Lots of details today, so we’ll stay short and to the point!

  • For recital:
    • All students should plan to arrive around 6 pm for the 6:30 recital.  Tuning will happen between 6:10 and 6:20 and we’ll use the extra few minutes to get settled and ready to play!
    • Our setting will not be quite as formal as in past years; however, performers should plan to “dress up” to some extent for the special occasion.
    • For the reception, I will be providing chocolate and vanilla ice cream (including dairy-free),drinks, etc.  I’d love for each family to bring your favorite ice cream topping!  (you are welcome to bring more than one  🙂 )
    • Piano rehearsal times will be Thursday May 29 (Itasca) and Monday June 2(Streamwood), with an optional extra practice on Thursday June 5 at my home studio in Streamwood.  Please see your email for tentative individual rehearsal times. Please confirm ASAP if any changes need to be made!!!
    • Like last year, I encourage each student to have “something to say” about their piece–history, challenges, what they enjoyed about it, etc.  If we have not talked about that yet, please remind me in your lesson this week! 🙂
  • Also upcoming:
    • Orchestra audition season–many of you have already talked to me to make sure you are on the right track with your preparations.  If you are planning to audition and have not yet me about it–please let me know so I can help you be sure of your preparation!  If you have not thought about this yet–it may not be too late!  Schaumburg and Elgin youth orchestras are both wonderful opportunities that I encourage for all students.  If you think you might be interested, please follow the links in the sidebar to contact the audition setup people ASAP! Most of the auditions happen between now and first of June.
    • Summer lessons–Please contact me when you know what dates you would like to plan lessons this summer. I hope to continue teaching through the middle or end of July, mostly on our normal Mondays and Thursdays, with alternate options on Wednesday afternoons/Saturday mornings.  I often encourage students to take the week after recital off, though given our short timetable this summer I’m certainly happy to schedule lessons right away for anybody who wants to jump right back in!

Have a great week!

February Notes

It’s been a quiet winter for studio announcements, but there has been a lot of great music going on!  Kudos to you all for the practice contest and scale contest successes, as well as for a lot of great music and technique accomplished!  I have been so pleased with what you all have prepared; I seriously considered setting up a last-minute winter recital, but unfortunately the timing did not come together.  However, I think almost everybody has gotten a big performance piece ready in the last couple months, and I would really encourage you to find someplace to share it, whether it’s with family and friends, over the phone to your grandma, or whatever!  Can’t wait to see what you all will have ready by recital time!

Coming up:

  • I am starting to plan our spring recital.  I am thinking of doing early June this year (though late May is still a possibility) due to some scheduling constraints on my part, and maybe doing things a little differently in a fun way!  As usual, I value your feedback on dates that would or would not work well for you.   I would hope to have our date set in stone by the end of March so you all can plan.
  • Please let me know when you will be off for Spring Break, if you plan to be gone at all.  It will help me to know this as soon as possible, as I may also plan a couple days away if there’s a time when most of you are gone.
  • If anybody is needing strings, I saw a sale advertised on SHAR this morning.  I did not get in to see how much of a sale, but thought that might be helpful to pass on.  Also, I have a few students who have been trying other brands such as Overture and Vision, that are a little cheaper, with good results, so don’t feel that you’re bound to the Dominants, which seem to go up in price every year!  (Just don’t buy Red Label, ok? For my ears’ sake?   Thanks! 🙂 )

Also, I’m going to be trying to update weekly, and considering doing some articles on topics that would be helpful to the studio in general.  The one I have in mind right now is on “Organizing Your Practice Time.”  I’d love input from both students and parents if there are things you think would be helpful to address in this way!

Have a great weekend!

Mrs. Layug