About this blogger:
Veronica Brandt holds a Bachelor Degree in Electrical Engineering. As editor, she has produced fine publications (as well as valuable reprints) dealing with Gregorian chant, hymnody, Latin, and other subjects. These publications are distinguished on account of their tastefulness. She lives in the Blue Mountains near Sydney, Australia, with her husband Peter and six children.
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When we say: "The people like this" we regard them as unable to develop, as animals rather than human beings, and we simply neglect our duties in helping them towards a true human existence — indeed, in this case, to truly Christian existence.
— Professor László Dobszay (2003)

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Every Church Musician Deserves Music Lessons
published 9 March 2019 by Veronica Brandt

OLUNTEERING is an opportunity for growth. Just recently I took up organ lessons. I had been looking for lessons for my children. It took me a while to come around to getting lessons for myself. As the following video might illustrate, kids and adults take lessons differently.


Reasons to get music lessons:

You get to talk to a Musician. Strangely enough sometimes the level of musicianship in your church choir may only extend to being able to sing in tune. Having some dedicated music time with someone who is musically ahead of you can really help. There’s a whole universe of musical knowledge out there!

You get to feel more like a Real Musician. Feeling like an imposter when leading a choir can hold you back. Having the trust in yourself to stand up and expect respect doesn’t come automatically for most people. Going through the ordeal of facing up to music lessons and hopefully some level of satisfaction with your achievements can help give you the chutzpah to inspire your choir.

You get a new level of compassion with your own children. Have you ever tried helping a teenager with their mathematics homework? Getting them to show their working? Convincing them that spreading out their work and taking up more room on the page will save time in the long run? As someone who has already taken that journey, it seems as obvious as the nose on your face, but to the child it seems to be a useless sidetrack to the ultimate aim of writing the correct answer on your page. Though they sometimes get it right, mistakes creep in when you skimp on showing your working.

Just like showing working in mathematics, practising hands separately and slowly seems so time-consuming and yet, when you rush headlong into playing all together at speed, getting it right is a matter of luck. With singing there is the importance of good breathing and technique. All takes lots of slow practice. Having someone there with a good sense of when to push forward and when to hold back is a huge help in making progress.

You may get new choir members!!! Networking with other musicians is helpful for meeting more musical people. Attend your local choral concerts and look out for any familiar faces. Maybe there’s a quiet member of your congregation who is really interested in music who just hasn’t thought about joining in.

Although the internet is full of free resources, which are great, putting down some money for music lessons can save you much pain and frustration in the long run. Having a monetary motivation to make the lessons worthwhile feels like a positive sort of stress right now. Finding a way to offset the expense is the next piece of the puzzle. Maybe Patreon?