Sunday, January 31, 2016

Urinetown the Musical: Updates from the Director

From Principal Lynn Dole's January 31, 2016 Newsletter:


Theater at Mohawk
Dear Mohawk families and community members,

We are three weeks into rehearsal for URINETOWN and the show is beginning to take shape.  Every day, there are new challenges, new discoveries, and new things that make us laugh.  As a newcomer to this community, I am learning every day.  A few highlights:

SEEING students pour over their scripts, or simply laughing together, in the minutes before rehearsal -  and remembering the friendships I built in theater at their age  (several of which remain to this day).
SPEAKING with students in Rachel Silverman's "Issues in Contemporary Art" class about a mural that they will paint on the walls of the auditorium, to make the whole room alive with the story.
WATCHING the discipline and focus of senior Kylee Cole, who is the choreographer for the show -  and whose work inspires me and her peers.
LISTENING to students in the 'Chorus of the Poor' (an ensemble that defines much of the play's action) as they reflect on issues in contemporary society that echo the stories of the play.
And (most of all) HEARING the beautiful voices of Mohawk students  - in the music room, in the auditorium, and in the hallway.  The strength of their voices reflects Mohawk's amazing vocal program.   I am thrilled to be a part of that proud history.

So JOIN US on Friday, March 4th and Saturday, March 5th (at 7:00 pm) and Sunday, March 6th (at 2:00 pm) for the show. I guarantee you an evening that will make you laugh, make you think, and, most of all, make you cheer for the extraordinary students of Mohawk.

One last note: we'd love your help with the set!   As the the show gets closer, we are looking for PIPES, PIPE MATERIAL, AND OTHER METAL TO FORM PART OF THE SET.  We are looking for pipes (PVC or metal), corrugated metal, scraps of luan, wire mesh, as well as fasteners, flanges, faucets, knobs, valves, drains, etc.  Do you have any old (clean!) materials that you'd like to be turned into art?  If so, a box will be in the Mohawk lobby starting this week.  For larger items (or with questions) email Michelle Larocque at mlarocque@mohawkschools.org.  Please note that we will be unable to return the donations.  Thank you!

Director Will MacAdams

Music News

From Principal Lynn Dole's January 31, 2016 Newsletter:

MMEA All State Music Festival: Two Mohawk Students Accepted to Chorus!

High School Music News from Mr. Halligan

Welcome to Semester II!  Students in the music department are diving into new music, beginning new instruments, singing and playing in new combinations, and beginning a study of music technology.  It’s an exciting time!  Below you can find a summary of what each class is working on.  You can also read about Open House, Song Grams, All State, and Local Cultural Council support of our trip to Annapolis, Maryland.  I would also like to invite you to the next meeting of the Mohawk Music Association on Feb. 9, 6:30pm in the Mohawk Library.
Scott Halligan
New Semester!
Here is a summary of what Mohawk Music students are currently working on.
Concert Band students are preparing music for the MICCA Festival in March, where they will be adjudicated and coached by renowned music educators.  In Concert Chorus, students are beginning to study new repertoire, including a spirited version of the indie folk song “Ho Hey,” and a choral setting of Robert Frost’s poem “The Road Not Taken” by the composer Randall Thompson.  They are also continuing their study of sight-reading, ear training, and solfeggio.  Select Chorus members are hard at work preparing small-group a cappella arrangements of love songs for Song Grams (more on that below!).  Students in strings class are learning fundamentals on viola, cello, and bass, and sight reading repertoire.  Novice Rockers in Rock Band class are getting acquainted with the acoustic guitar, and experienced rockers are working on “Enter Sandman” by Metallica.  Music Technology students are getting an overview of Mixcraft digital audio software.    
Open House, Thursday February 11
Select Chorus members will be presenting music informally at Open House on Thursday, Feb. 11.  Come hear some of the exciting new music they have learned since the Winter Concert.  They have also worked in small groups to create impressive, original a cappella arrangements of love songs, and they sound wonderful!  Come hear what they have accomplished together, and consider purchasing Song Grams for your loved ones!
Song Grams!
The popular annual fundraiser for Select Chorus is back!  Purchase Song Grams for your friends and loved ones, and members of Select Chorus will serenade your lucky someone with a personal a cappella performance at school or over the phone!  Song Grams are the perfect way for you to celebrate Valentine’s Day!  Song Grams can be purchased at Open House, during lunches at Mohawk, or by special arrangement with Mr. Halligan (you can email me here: shalligan@mohawkschools.org ).  Get yours before Valentine’s Day!
All State – Two Students Accepted!!
I am proud to announce that (for the first time ever?) Mohawk students have been accepted to the All State Music Festival!  Zach Arfa and Matthew Taylor were accepted to the All State Chorus by successful audition!  They will spend the weekend of March 10-12 in Boston for the All State Music Festival.  The festival is organized by the Massachusetts Music Educators Association.  The weekend will culminate in a concert featuring the All State Chorus, Jazz Band, Orchestra, and Concert Band.  The concert will take place at Symphony Hall in Boston, a National Historic Landmark and one of the finest concert halls in the world.
The All State Chorus will be directed by Dr. Hilary Apfelstadt, Director of Choral Activities and Professor of Choral Conducting at the University of Toronto.  For more info click here.
Congratulations Zach and Matthew!!
Local Cultural Councils Support Annapolis Trip!
The following is copied from the Mohawk Music Association Website:
The Mohawk Music Association is very appreciative of the financial support provided by several Local Cultural Councils for the upcoming trip (April 7-10, 2016) to the Worldstrides Heritage Exhibition Music Festival in Annapolis, MD for students in the Mohawk High School Band, Chorus, and Select Chorus.

We have received notice of the following generous donations:


Thank-you!

The Annapolis trip is supported in part by grants from the Ashfield, Buckland, Charlemont-Hawley, Colrain, Cummington, Heath, Plainfield, Rowe, and Shelburne Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.
MMA Meeting, Feb. 9 6:30pm
The next meeting of the Mohawk Music Association will be on February 9, 6:30pm in the Mohawk Library. Be there!

Middle School Music News from Mrs. Clark

MMA meeting: Please join us for our next meeting on Tuesday, February 9th at 6:30 in the library. We are always looking to welcome new members!

Junior Districts: A letter and music went home this week to those students accepted in the Junior Districts festival. Please read this important letter. Additionally, I will be available this Tuesday after school for help with the music.

Upcoming performances: It is quite awhile before our next performance, but please keep these dates on your calendar.
Spring Concert: May 10
Six Flags Festival: May 14
Memorial Day parade: May 30 (band only)

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Local Cultural Councils Supporting Annapolis Trip!

The Mohawk Music Association is very appreciative of the financial support provided by several Local Cultural Councils for the upcoming trip (April 7-10, 2016) to the Worldstrides Heritage Exhibition Music Festival in Annapolis, MD for students in the Mohawk High School Band, Chorus, and Select Chorus.

We have received notice of the following generous donations:
Thank-you!

The Annapolis trip is supported in part by grants from the Ashfield, Buckland, Charlemont-Hawley, Colrain, Cummington, Heath, Plainfield, Rowe, and Shelburne Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Music News

From Principal Lynn Dole's January 18, 2016 Newsletter:

Student performances at Mocha Maya's

High School Music News from Mr. Halligan

Congrats to everyone who participated in Mohawk Arts Night at Mocha Maya’s!

Exams are here!  Students in the music department are preparing to demonstrate what they have learned this semester in a variety of ways.  Below you can find a summary of what they are working on. You can also read about the Senior Districts Festival, which takes place this weekend at Umass Amherst, a Select Chorus event at the Shelburne Grange, and our next MMA meeting.  
Scott Halligan
Exams
Here is a summary of what Mohawk Music students will be doing during exams.
Students in Band and Chorus classes will have mock-auditions.  A mock-audition is a great way for students to demonstrate their level of mastery, and it’s also a great way for them to gain familiarity with the audition process.  This is important because so many opportunities in music are awarded on the basis of an audition (think Select Chorus, the Musical, the Pioneer Valley Youth Orchestra, Senior Districts, All-State, Colleges and Conservatories of Music, professional orchestras, Broadway, The Sing-Off…). The mock-audition is also great because the skills needed to audition successfully are similar to the skills needed to interview successfully for a job.  
Students in Rock Band will be working in small-groups to demonstrate their ability to effectively select, rehearse, and perform music in an interdependent group of peers.  Students in Music Studio and Music Theory will be presenting a variety of final projects.
Senior District Festival – Saturday, January 16, 3:00pm, Umass Amherst, Fine Arts Center
Several Mohawk High School students have the honor of performing at the Fine Arts Center at Umass Amherst this weekend.  They are singing in the highly selective Senior Districts Festival Chorus directed by Lindsay Pope, director of choral ensembles at Mount Holyoke College.  
Also of note: three of our students have been invited to audition for the All-State Chorus on January 23.  Zach Arfa, Adam Hallenbeck, and Matthew Taylor: BREAK A LEG!!
Select Chorus at the Shelburne Grange – Wednesday January 20, 7:00pm
Select Chorus will be presenting an informal performance at the Shelburne Grange this Wednesday, January 20, at 7:15pm.  The event is free and open to the public.  There will be a reception following the performance.  Donations will be accepted.
MMA Meeting – January 19, 6:30pm         
Last week’s meeting of the Mohawk Music Association was postponed due to weather.  The next meeting of will be on January 19 at 6:30pm in the Mohawk Library.  Be there!

Middle School Music News from Mrs. Clark

Mocha Maya’s
On Friday, January 15th several Middle and High School Music students performed at Mocha Maya’s for their first Mohawk Arts Showcase evening. In addition to the variety of songs, students also shared poetry readings and artwork was displayed. Thank you to art teacher Rachel Silverman for organizing this event!

Midterms
Students in both Band and Chorus will be taking a 2-part midterm. There will be a performance portion and a written midterm. Information has been sent home, including dates for all of the exams. In addition, a list of definitions has been sent home, and links to the quizlet website have been updated on my home page in my class pages. (Please disregard the links that are on the paper that was sent home. Refer to the updated links on my home page.)
Finally, all classes were given a tutorial on how to access the quizlet games, which include flash cards as well as a fun new “gravity” game!

“Urinetown” rehearsals
Rehearsals have begun! There are several 8th grade students participating in this year’s musical “Urinetown” A schedule has been sent out, including “make-up” times for students who participate in winter sports. Please refer to the schedule to see when rehearsals take place!

Six Flags
In the next week I will be sending out an “intention” letter for the Six Flags performance trip on May 14th. This is a Saturday trip and we will be performing in the morning and staying at the park for the rest of the day. The ticket price includes admission to the park, and one meal in the park. Thank you to the MMA for their generous donation, which covers the performance fee for each student!  Please fill out and return the form by the deadline so that I can finalize plans. Please note: there is the option to perform only, if your child does not care to go to the park. I am trying to gain 100% participation this year. There may be carpooling opportunities for students who wish to perform only.
Finally: I am looking for 4 chaperones for this trip. Please indicate on the form if you wish to chaperone!

Select Chorus performing at the Shelburne Grange

Select Chorus will be presenting an informal performance at the Shelburne Grange #68 this Wednesday, January 20, at 7:00pm. The event is free and open to the public. There will be a reception following the performance. Donations to benefit the Mohawk Music Department will be accepted.

Shelburne Grange #68 meets in Fellowship Hall at 17 Little Mohawk Road in Shelburne, about a quarter mile from Route 2.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Photos of Student Performances/Exhibits at Mocha Maya's


A few photos from the Mohawk Arts Showcase - Friday, January 15 at 6:30pm at Mocha Maya’s in Shelburne Falls.

This event was presented by MAEC, the Mohawk Arts Education Council, and featured student-artists in grades 7-12 from the visual art, music, drama, and poetry programs. There were poetry and drama readings, and instrumental and choral performances. Middle and high school student artwork will be featured for the month of January as well (it will be on display until Valentine's Day.)

Thank you to Mocha Maya's for hosting the event to showcase the talents of Mohawk's students!

Click on each image for a larger view.















Friday, January 15, 2016

MMA January Meeting

The Mohawk Music Association meeting is Tuesday, January 19, at 6:30 pm in the Mohawk school library. Please join us.
 
Agenda:

I. minutes from Dec. meeting
II. Treasurer's report (Dec.)
III. Director's report
     a. Scott
     b. Gina
IV. Upcoming performances?
V. fundraising update
VI. New business

Monday, January 11, 2016

MMA January Meeting and More

[UPDATE 1/13/2016: Meeting postponed to next week, Tuesday, January 19, at 6:30 pm]

The Mohawk Music Association meeting is Tuesday, January 12, at 6:30 pm in the Mohawk school library. Please join us.

On the agenda:  we'll get updates from the Music Directors about their upcoming events, and more!



Mohawk Arts Showcase - Friday, January 15 at 6:30pm at Mocha Maya’s in Shelburne Falls
Mark your calendars, you do not want to miss this special event presented by MAEC, the Mohawk Arts Education Council, featuring student-artists in grades 7-12 from the visual art, music, drama, and poetry programs. Come see artwork, listen to poetry and drama readings, and enjoy instrumental and choral performances. Middle and high school student artwork will be featured for the month of January as well (it will be on display until Valentine's Day.)

Senior District Festival – Saturday, January 16, 3:00pm, UMass Amherst, Fine Arts Center
Thirteen Mohawk High School students will have the honor of performing at the Fine Arts Center at Umass Amherst. They will be singing in the highly selective Senior Districts Festival Chorus.

The Western District of the Massachusetts Music Educators Association hosts two annual music festivals at UMass: the Junior Districts Festival for students in grades 7-9, and the Senior Districts Festival for students in grades 9-12. Each festival features an honor choir, honor band, honor orchestra, and honor jazz band made up of students from around the region who are accepted by audition. Students in these ensembles have the opportunity to work with prestigious guest conductors and perform music that is more challenging than what can typically be done in high school music programs.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Music News

From Principal Lynn Dole's January 3, 2016 Newsletter:


High School Music News from Mr. Halligan
Happy New Year!  Exams are almost here!  Students in the music department will spend the next few weeks preparing to demonstrate what they have learned this semester in a variety of ways.  Below you can find a summary of what they will be working on.  You can also read about the Senior Districts Festival, which will take place later this month at Umass Amherst.
Scott Halligan

Exams
Here is a summary of what Mohawk Music students will be doing during exams.
Students in Band and Chorus classes will have mock-auditions.  A mock-audition is a great way for students to demonstrate their level of mastery, and it’s also a great way for them to gain familiarity with the audition process.  This is important because so many opportunities in music are awarded on the basis of an audition (think Select Chorus, the Musical, the Pioneer Valley Youth Orchestra, Senior Districts, All-State, Colleges and Conservatories of Music, professional orchestras, Broadway, The Sing-Off…). The mock-audition is also great because the skills needed to audition successfully are similar to the skills needed to interview successfully for a job.  

Students in Rock Band will be working in small groups to demonstrate their ability to effectively select, rehearse, and perform music in an interdependent group of peers.  Students in Music Studio and Music Theory will be presenting a variety of final projects.
Senior District Festival – Saturday, January 16, 3:00pm, UMass Amherst, Fine Arts Center
Thirteen Mohawk High School students will have the honor of performing at the Fine Arts Center at Umass Amherst later this month.  They will be singing in the highly selective Senior Districts Festival Chorus.  
The Western District of the Massachusetts Music Educators Association hosts two annual music festivals at Umass: the Junior Districts Festival for students in grades 7-9, and the Senior Districts Festival for students in grades 9-12.  Each festival features an honor choir, honor band, honor orchestra, and honor jazz band made up of students from around the region who are accepted by audition.  Students in these ensembles have the opportunity to work with prestigious guest conductors and perform music that is more challenging than what can typically be done in high school music programs.  

Also of note: three of our students have been invited to audition for the All-State Chorus on January 23.  Zach Arfa, Adam Hallenbeck, and Matthew Taylor: BREAK A LEG!!
MMA Meeting – Tuesday, January 12, 6:30pm
The next meeting of the Mohawk Music Association is January 12 at 6:30pm in the Mohawk Library.  Be there!

Auditions for the spring musical “Urinetown” will be held on Monday, January 4th

[Mark you calendars for performances on March 4, 5, & 6, show times to be announced. Snow dates March 11, 12, 13.]

Audition schedule:
2:30 - 5 pm  Students who do not have an afternoon athletics conflict  (Meet in the auditorium at 2:30)

5 - 7 pm:  Students with an afternoon athletics conflict and students who were NOT able to attend the first round of auditions in December  (Meet in the auditorium at 5)

Audition format:
All students will sing "Happy Birthday" and a song of their choosing (a cappella), and tell a one minute story on any topic.  Students who did not audition in December will also be learning a student-choreographed dance sequence (Students who auditioned in December will not repeat the dance audition).

A note from Director Will MacAdams:
I'm excited to see you this week and to work together in the weeks and months ahead.    My hope is that this is a process of learning and discovery; not only for you, but for all of us working on the show.

If you have any questions, I invite you to email me at wmacadams@mohawkschools.org.

To an inspired and inspiring beginning to 2016,
Will

Urinetown Audition Information


[Mark you calendars for performances on March 4, 5, & 6, show times to be announced. Snow dates March 11, 12, 13.]

Auditions for Urinetown the Musical: Monday, January 4th
  • 2:30 - 5 pm: Students who do not have an afternoon athletics conflict (Meet in the auditorium at 2:30) 
  • 5 - 7 pm: Students with an afternoon athletics conflict and students who were NOT able to attend the first round of auditions in December (Meet in the auditorium at 5:00) 

Audition format: All students will sing "Happy Birthday" and a song of their choosing (a cappella), and tell a one minute story on any topic. Students who did not audition in December will also be learning a student-choreographed dance sequence. Students who auditioned in December will not repeat the dance audition.

We aim to have the rehearsal schedule completed before we cast, so that all students who are cast can review the schedule (as well as a contract) before making a commitment - more on that in the coming week.

A note from Director Will MacAdams: I'm excited to see you this week and to work together in the weeks and months ahead. My hope is that this is a process of learning and discovery; not only for you, but for all of us working on the show.

If you have any questions, I invite you to email me at wmacadams@mohawkschools.org.

To an inspired and inspiring beginning to 2016,
Will

 www.willmacadams.com