YouTube versus In-Person Music Lessons

By | Tips & Techniques

With access to wifi and an internet device, we can learn just about anything from anywhere. This is an amazing age of having information at our fingertips! For many people, it may have been a challenge to imagine those first room-size computers eventually being able to fit into our pockets, but that is the reality of now. Not only can we use and learn from the content on the internet, we can also create content (such as this blog post!). This includes MUSIC. 

There are many websites and online communities where people can go to learn music theory, download sheet music, and learn to perform music on an instrument or with their voice. When it comes to online music lessons, YouTube has a vast library of lessons. Want to learn the basics of holding a violin? Check. Want to learn a specific guitar riff? Check. Want to learn a plagal cadence? Check. Want to learn how to compose a pop song? Check. Want to have an interactive musical experience? Nope.

There are various differences between YouTube learning and in-person lessons (see graphic), but the biggest is the level of personal interaction between the student(s) and the instructor(s). Music lessons that are in-person are flexible, adaptable, social, and personal. The student can share their personal interests and goals with the instructor, and the instructor can adapt the instruction to the needs of student. Not to say that instruction can’t be done virtually via Skype, FaceTime, or any other virtual method (that is a post for another day). For the purposes of this post, I am focusing on recorded or one-way videos (such as Facebook Live).

  • Cost: The recorded lesson is free to the student, with no income to the instructor (unless they have ads or sponsors). The in-person lesson involves a fee to the students which is income for the instructor and payment for their expertise and time.
  • Scheduling: A recorded lesson can be taken anytime from almost anywhere, while there is a scheduled date and time for the in-person lesson, often at a specific location.
  • Interaction: Only the comments section offer a somewhat interactive component to the recorded lesson. The entire lesson is interactive when in-person, offering specific feedback to benefit the student.
  • Variety of topics: There is a WIDE variety of topics available online, whereas one particular teacher may have a limited number of topics they are qualified to teach in-person. Depending on where the student lives and how far they are willing to travel to learn in-person on a specific topic, this will limit what is available.
  • Availability: If a student lives in a remote area, there may not be any teachers of the music topic they wish to explore. Hopefully, they will have online access and have all of the information available through the internet, although some remote areas also make that challenging.
  • Other factors: An in-person lesson is a personalized, social activity (usually one-to-one, but can also be group). Recorded lessons are completely universal (not personalized), anonymous (no one will know what you are learning), and lack a social component, unless the student chooses to comment and initiate some type of interaction with other viewers or with the instructor.

As a student is learning the guitar riff from a video, how will they know that their hand position is correct? That the guitar is tuned correctly? That they are at the correct fret and/or applying appropriate pressure? That the guitar is a quality instrument without issues that affect the playing and sound of the instrument? That they are sitting or standing with appropriate posture? That they are using the correct technique?

Video learning is a great supplement for in-person learning. Go ahead and search for that specific song or technique you want to learn! But the foundation of the musical learning will be strongest when built in an interactive student and instructor format. Many instructors point their students to online lessons. This is analogous to attending a workshop or clinic… at least one in which you are not able to participate actively in the instruction. And as many of us know, sometimes we learn best when a topic is presented in a variety of styles from different sources.

So, if you or your child desire to learn an instrument or improve your singing skills, find a qualified instructor to take in-person lessons, and supplement that instruction with the wealth of knowledge on the internet.

 

Written by: Heather McEndree, January 2020

CVSM to present annual Encore Musicians Concert

By | Announcements

CVSM will present their Encore Musicians Concert on Sunday, April 7th, 2019 featuring over 100 community musicians aged 50 and older. This is a FREE event beginning at 2:30 PM at CAMS South Auditorium at 1151 McKinley St., Chambersburg.

This is the fourth time CVSM has assembled this event to feature its more “seasoned” performers.  This year performers include Penn National Harmony Singers, New Horizons String Orchestra, and the New Horizons Band and Freedom Valley Chorus.

Cumberland Valley School of Music students comprise The New Horizons String Orchestra and The New Horizons Band. These ensembles are open to members age 50 and older through scholarship funding and support by The New Horizons International Music Association (NHIMA). NHIMA is a worldwide organization comprised of over 200 New Horizons groups whose 9,000 members are over the age of 50. Some played music during their school years and stashed their instrument in a closet or attic while the demands of work and raising children took center stage. Others dreamt of being a musician but never had the opportunity or the money to pay for lessons and instruments when they were school age. Both groups find themselves now at or near retirement with children grown and gone, fewer responsibilities, but just as much desire.

The Penn National Harmony Singers is a volunteer group whose primary venue is reaching out to the Assisted Living Communities in the Chambersburg area.  They present an hour long concert of music selections, one or two times each month, during the year. They also present an annual Christmas Concert for the residents of Penn National at the New Guilford Brethren in Christ Church. The group was formed over twenty years ago. Their goal is to brighten the day of the residents through music. They number around 30 members that enjoy music and sharing their talents.

Freedom Valley Chorus enjoys the love of singing four-part a cappella barbershop harmony and an enthusiasm for sharing this unique sound with private and public community audiences. They strive for consistent musical excellence through quality education, personal growth, joy, friendship and fun.  In September of 2004, a small group of enthusiastic ladies who enjoyed singing gathered to sing in four part harmony with one of the group directing. In a short period of time they chose to share their time with others who may have the same interest and began inviting others to join them. The original group has expanded to a current roster of 31 members. The members travel from Hagerstown, Waynesboro, Mont Alto, Fayetteville, New Oxford, Shippensburg, Newburg, Orrstown, Carlisle, and of course a number are from Chambersburg.  Freedom Valley Chorus became a charter member of Sweet Adelines International in June of 2007.  Since that time the Chorus has entertained many audiences in south central Pennsylvania and northern Maryland and has competed each year at Region 19’s conventions in Ocean City, Maryland.

CVSM PRESENTS TRI-TALENT MUSICALE HOSTED BY PATRIOT FEDERAL CREDIT UNION

By | Announcements

Cumberland Valley School of Music will present a Tri-Talent Musicale (guitar, piano and juggling) on Saturday, March 23, 2019 from 7-9 p.m. at the Inn at Ragged Edge, 1090 Ragged Edge Road, Chambersburg, PA. The evening will feature Stuart Ryerse, piano, guitar and juggling, and pre-show music by husband and wife duo RitmaCordia, Marlin Barnes and Jane Peatling, will perform on marimba and cello. 

Stuart Ryerse’s performance will have three segments; folk guitar songs, juggling to original music, and piano, with the piano segment being the longest and most classically virtuosic. Stuart is a native of Dillsburg, PA is currently a student at New England Conservatory studying Contemporary Improvisation.

Exquisite Tastes will provide sweet and savory hors d’œuvres and non-alcoholic beverages.  Wine will also be available. Tickets are $40 each and are available by calling CVSM at 717-261-1220 or at the link below.  Special thanks to Patriot Federal Credit Union for their financial support of this event. 

CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS

CVSM PLANS ANNUAL PERFORMATHON FUND-RAISER ON MARCH 16

By | Announcements

The Cumberland Valley School of Music will present its annual Performathon on Saturday, March 16, 2019 from 9am – 4 pm. Performathon is an all-school event featuring over one hundred students, along with faculty members, performing in a continuous stream of recitals from 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.  The public is invited to the free event being held in the Thomson Alumnae Chapel on the Wilson College campus in Chambersburg, PA. Everyone is invited to attend at any time throughout the event, and may stay as long as desired.

Students will be singing and playing their way through the day in musical styles varying from rock and jazz, to classical and Broadway. A broad range of performances, from solo acts to ensembles, will be featured. Ensembles taking the stage will include: the Cumberbunds Children’s Choir directed by Jeffrey Noll, The CVSM New Horizons Orchestra conducted by Deb Stotelmyer and the Theatre Explorers directed by Heather Kline.

“The annual Performathon is one of my favorite CVSM traditions!,” said Heather McEndree, newly minted Executive Director.  “It showcases the diversity of our students and is a perfect example of our mission in action.” 

Student musicians, who represent all ages and ability levels, seek monetary pledges as part of participating in the Performathon. All donations are tax deductible and will benefit the non-profit school.

Various area businesses and individuals contribute prizes for the students who obtain the highest amounts of donations to sponsor their performances. Among the prizes offered to students this year are: Totem Pole show passports; tickets to a show at the Luhrs Center; Hagerstown Suns family 4-packs; gift cards to local businesses; a basket of craft supplies; and a $100 Target gift card. Every student who meets the minimum donation requirement receives a commemorative t-shirt.

For further information about the Performathon, or to make a donation, visit the school website: www.cvsmusic.org. Additional information about the event can be accessed by calling the school directly at 717-261-1220 and speaking with any staff member.

Community String Orchestra presents fall concert featuring Spanish selections

By | Announcements

A free concert open to the public will be given by the Cumberland Valley School of Music Community String Orchestra on Tuesday, November 14 at 8 p.m. Location of the event is the Thomson Hall Alumnae Chapel located on the Wilson College Campus.

For this program, director Herman Hopple assembled a collection of mostly Spanish selections centered around a string adaptation of the delightful “Andalucia Suite” by Ernesto Lacuona. 

“I chose the selections to appeal to both our musicians and our audience,” states the director, Herman Hopple. “It should be a very entertaining program.”

Orchestra members gather twice each year to rehearse and present two free concerts. About 30 string musicians from the Chambersburg area are coming together to be this season’s performers. Many of the musicians return to perform with the group and new members are welcome to join the group. Any string player interested is asked to contact the school at (717)-261-1220 for more information.

Hopple provides double bass and electric bass instruction at CVSM. A former public school string teacher and orchestra director, he has experience in teaching all ages of students.

Cumberland Valley School of Music Announces New Executive Director

By | Announcements

The Cumberland Valley School of Music Board of Directors is proud to announce the appointment of Heather McEndree as the new Executive Director effective March 1, 2019. McEndree will succeed Paula Hepfer who will be retiring after 29 years of service to the school. 

McEndree has served as the Program Manager of the school since 2014, where her duties included program creation and management, faculty management and concert logistics. She performs and teaches flute and is trained as a Musikgarten specialist for early childhood education. Previous to her work at CVSM she worked as a public school music teacher in Washington County, Md.

“I’m delighted to pass the baton to Heather who is both very capable and passionate about the mission of CVSM” says Hepfer. “I have every confidence the school will flourish under her leadership.”

Cumberland Valley School of Music presents 29th Annual Gala Showcase Concert

By | Announcements

TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE AT THE DOOR

Cumberland Valley School of Music is pleased to present its 29th Gala Showcase concert program “More Than Four: Celebrating Musical Seasons” at the Thomson Alumnae Chapel on the Wilson College Campus at 3:00 PM on Sunday, November 4th.

CVSM Program Manager Heather McEndree became intrigued with the notion that music can represent the seasons of the year (spring, summer, etc.) and the seasons of life (birth, adulthood, etc.) both literally and figuratively. This performance features music from all genres and time periods, with a special focus on the music of Leonard Bernstein, celebrating his 100th birthday in 2018.

“It is such a joy to work with our faculty members, students and musical friends to put together a showcase concert,” said Paula Hepfer, CVSM’s Executive Director. “We have an immensely talented group of people who perform a variety of genres brilliantly. It is invigorating!”

The concert opens with Read More

Piano and Organ Masterclass and Concert

By | Announcements
FREE and open to the public

 

MASTERCLASS Thursday, 10/11/2018 6:30 pm

CONCERT Friday, 10/12/2018 6:30 pm

Thomson Alumnae Chapel, Wilson College

 

MASTERCLASS: an event in which students play in front of an audience and receive feedback and instruction from a guest teacher. The masterclass is open to the public; performance for the teacher is not required. It is an opportunity not only for students to perform, but also for the audience to get an intimate behind-the-scenes look in to the art of performing. Contact Heather at CVSM if you are interested in performing on piano or organ for the masterclass: 717-261-1220 x5 or heather@cvsmusic.org

 

ABOUT THE ARTIST:

Barbara A. Masters has had an extensive career as a performer, church organist, accompanist, teacher, musical theater director and composer. Ms. Masters currently serves as Music Director at Visitation Church in Elmhurst where she directs two choirs. She is on the piano and organ faculty at Elmhurst College. Ms. Masters has performed concerts in the U.S. and abroad, most recently with the Visitation Choir at Notre Dame in Paris, Rome and Assisi.  Ms. Masters’ training includes two years at the University of Michigan, piano study with Reid Nibley; Bachelor of Music in Piano from Boston University with study under Alfred Kanwischer, Bela Nagy and Maria Clodes; Master of Arts from Brown University in Ethnomusicology under Bonnie C. Wade and Fredric Lieberman; Master of Music in Organ Performance at Youngstown State under Dr. Ronald Gould and harpsichord study with Marcelline Hawke. She holds a Colleague Certificate from the American Guild of Organists and is Dean of the Fox Valley AGO Chapter.   Ms. Masters lives in Elmhurst with her husband and has 3 grown sons and two grandchildren.

Corey Rotz Concert – “If I Ruled the World”

By | Announcements

On September 23, at 2 PM enjoy an afternoon of classic songs from The Great American Songbook, in Thomson Hall on the Wilson College Campus. Enjoy songs made famous by singers like, Tony Bennett and Frank Sinatra. Come Rain or Shine, Stormy Weather, Fly Me to the Moon, All The Things You Are, I’ve Got You Under My Skin and many others. Chambersburg native Corey Evan Rotz, joins forces with his longtime jazz trio for an afternoon of hits that will take you on a musical journey down memory lane.

For tickets CLICK HERE or call 717-261-1220

Student Scholarship Recipients Perform for Annual Recognition Concert

By | Announcements

Cumberland Valley School of Music plans to hold its annual Recognition Concert on Sunday, April 29 to feature the student recipients of the Merit Awards Scholarships and graduating seniors who plan to major or minor in a performance art (music, theatre and/or dance).

Free and open to the public, the concert will take place at the Ragged Edge Inn, 1090 Ragged Edge Road, Chambersburg. Each student will perform during the 3 p.m. concert.

According to Paula Hepfer, CVSM executive director, the Merit Awards Scholarship process was formed during the earliest years of the 28-year-old school’s existence. She recently Read More