The following Applied Skills classes give the student a chance to apply his or her musical knowledge and understanding to the development of a specific skill that will in some particular way enhance the student’s pleasure and performance at the piano.
A. Collaborative Piano*
Lara Urrutia, Coordinator
- Students enrolled in “collaborative piano” will explore the skills needed to be an accompanist and chamber music performer. Students will have the opportunity to collaborate with other instrumentalists and/or vocalists.
- To be eligible for this Skills Class students must have successfully completed Certificate of Merit Level Seven or its equivalent. They should be entering ninth grade or higher in the Fall.
- In addition to exploring the specific skills necessary to being a successful collaborative pianist, campers will receive professional coaching and gain experience through rehearsals with university-level instrumentalists and/or vocalists.
- Topics to be covered include orchestral score reductions; exploring and adjusting to timbre differences between woodwinds, brass, strings, percussion and voice; choral score reading; musical theater accompanying practices; and collaborative stage presence and etiquette.
- Collaborative groups will have an opportunity to perform at the final camp concert for parents and friends.
Dr. Anthony Suter, Coordinator
- The Composition class will explore music creation, including the development of melody (how to use motives), use of harmony (chordal accompaniments and progression), and form (the structure of the piece).
- Students enrolled in this class will write an original composition.
- Instruction and guidance are customized to the skill level and goals of each individual student.
- No background or experience in composition is requited.
- Students who are currently working on a composition have the option of bringing it to camp or may choose to create a brand new piece.
C. Harpsichord for Pianists
- Students enrolled in this class will explore the technique and skills needed to perform on the harpsichord.
- Students will have a hands-on opportunity to perform on a two-manual concert instrument.
- One of the questions to be explored: does performing Bach or Scarlatti on the harpsichord give us insight into playing these composer’s works on the piano?
- This class is ideal for students who have little or no harpsichord background.
D. Organ for Pianists
Dr. Angelica Prodan, Coordinator
- Students enrolled in this class will explore the technique and skills needed to perform on the organ.
- Students will have a hand-on opportunity to perform on the three University of Redlands organs, including the Casavant organ in the Memorial Chapel.
- In addition to learning about the similarities and differences between the piano and organ, students will prepare to perform an introductory organ piece in recital.
- This class is ideal for students who have little or no organ background.
E. Sight-Reading for Fun!
Erika Ramos, Coordinator
- Sight Reading is one of the most important skills for pianists.
- It is also one of the most fun skills, whether being able to play carols at Christmas time, or reading pop tunes for one’s friends, or finding out how a piece sounds before learning it.
- The sight-reading class will help students improve their ability to play new music the first time they see it.
- In this class you will learn tricks for making sight-reading easier.
- The emphasis is on quick recognition of notes, rhythms, and musical patterns, and learning how to keep a steady beat.
F. Tune-Up For Your Ears!
Julie Johnson, Coordinator
- Just as a car engine periodically needs a tune-up in order to run in tip-top shape, so does a musician’s hearing.
- In a fun and lively way, this is a class that will open your ears and sharpen your listening ability.
- This class will aid you in being able to play music “by ear” and write down tunes you have heard.
- You will develop skills for instant recognition of melodic and rhythmic patterns.
Each year, the University of Redlands Piano camp offers an ever-changing array of musical explorations for students. This year, there are four explorations to choose from.
1. Music and Dance: “How Music Makes Us Move”
Working with an experienced dance and music instructor, students will learn about and better understand music’s relation to dance. Music and movement go hand in hand.
2. Music and Drama: “Lights, Music! Action! New!
Students will uncover the dramatic elements within a musical composition, studying a broad range of emotions and the ways in which a composer conveys them. Class activities include listening and discussion, as well as physical enactment and performance.
3. Music and Multi-Media: “Listening with our Eyes!”
Students will create a “Nature Symphony” on film, juxtaposing nature scenes they videotape on location around campus with the recorded piano performances of other campers. Students will learn the basics of videography, including how to handle a camera, recording, and editing.
4. Anatomy of the Piano: “An Instrument with Guts”
This is a chance to take a piano apart and see what it is made of. How does a piano produce sound, for example? You will examine all its parts, from the soundboard, strings and hammers to tiny screws and knuckles. With the guidance of a professional technician, you will have the experience of actually tuning a piano, among other fascinating hands-on activities.