Turtle Bay Music School is pleased to offer a host of partnership opportunities for public schools who seek music programs in which students can participate. Turtle Bay Music School prides itself on working closely with each partner school to create appropriate, sustainable programs that benefit students, teachers, schools, and the communities they serve. With more than 20 years of experience working in New York City public schools, and a wide variety of music offerings, TBMS is able to provide Public School partners with the opportunity to develop the music community of their choice.
Our current partners include P.S. 20, P.S. 72, P.S. 160Q, P.S. 171Q, P.S. 267, P.S. 361, P.S. 414, and High School for Health Professions and Human Services.
Based on an innovative philosophy created by composer Carl Orff, our holistic approach introduces children to the elements of singing, storytelling, movement, rhythmic work, instrumental ensembles, improvisation, and music theory in a supportive, non-competitive environment. Using poems, rhymes, games, songs, and dances, children begin to expand and significantly develop their natural musical and linguistic abilities.
A typical Orff lesson follows a sequence of learning that allows the children to fully explore and internalize each musical concept. Children learn first through imitation, followed by musical exploration, then individual creation, and finally by note reading, hand sign, and staff. Simple rhythmic patterns and pre-tuned tonal construction form the basis of Orff music making. By starting with these basic concepts, children learn the tools and gain the confidence necessary to create music and improvise freely. Children are encouraged to work both as soloists and in ensembles. The act of creating music together helps students to become sensitive listeners and musical partners, fostering a sense of community. Keeping the notion of “community” in mind, there are several advantages of using Orff in a public school setting. Given the flexible nature of Orff, any of the musical activities can be linked to cultural studies, social themes, and/or school curriculum.
During the Colombian Music, Dance, and Culture Residency with Turtle Bay Music School, students have the unique opportunity to learn from internationally acclaimed musicians known for their influence in the Colombian music world. Students observe and participate in all aspects of Colombian music, including (but not limited to) dancing, singing and percussion! Our teaching artists use music and dance to expose students to the rich cultural and historical roots of Colombian and other Latin American cultures.
During this one of a kind program, students learn complex and exciting Colombian rhythms, including cumbia and vallenato. In their weekly sessions students build ensemble performance skills and increase their confidence in their musical abilities as they explore unique avenues of creativity. Students also absorb the basics of the Spanish language through traditional songs, and traditional dance steps will provide the students with an exciting and satisfying challenge to express Colombian rhythms through movement, all while having fun! To give students an authentic experience of Colombian culture, Turtle Bay Music School has commissioned artisans in Colombia to craft genuine instruments for young musicians to use.
The skills developed during this program are not limited to music and dancing! Students are given an insider’s look at specific cultural attributes of Colombia, and they will gain a wealth of knowledge about the country and the people who have shaped this beautiful and vibrant culture.
This program culminates in an interactive performance where students showcase their new musical knowledge in a performance with the premiere Colombian music group of Manhattan, Folklore Urbano.
During the Brazilian Percussion and Dance Residency with Turtle Bay Music School, students work with renowned dance and choreographer Quenia Ribeiro and percussionist Nick Birmelin to discover the unique music and dance of Brazil. Each week, students explore the history and culture of Brazil, through the dance and song of the countries culturally-diverse regions. Students build an understanding of Brazilian percussion instruments and songs, and how these songs translate into traditional and contemporary Brazilian dance, including various forms of Samba, Orixa dance and Maculele (stick fighting dance from the sugar cane plantations of Bahia).
Students are encouraged to work both as musicians and as dancers, as they begin to learn the important teamwork skills necessary for any performance ensemble. Students also learn basic Portuguese words and phrases as they sing traditional songs. This program culminates in a performance by the students, joined by Nick and Quenia.
During Turtle Bay Music School’s World Music and Percussion classes, teaching artists bring to the classroom instruments from around the world, and guide the students through their history, the music they create, and how each instrument is played. Students learn tradition rhythms, songs, movements and even language, before a final performance with their teaching artists.
In Turtle Bay Music School’s choral programs, renowned vocal artists work with elementary, middle and high school students to provide quality choral education. This program encourages students’ love and appreciation of choral music and nurtures their individual growth and development. These weekly classes maintain high standards of excellence for music training and performance, and provide a unique opportunity for musical and personal development in an atmosphere of camaraderie and friendship. TBMS Choral Programs also reaches out to share their work, encouraging good citizenship amongst participants while teaching about the positive contribution their music can make in their diverse communities.
Turtle Bay Music School’s After-School Strings program is a Suzuki-oriented program designed to provide music instruction in violin, viola and cello. Parent/Guardian involvement both in the classroom and at home is crucial to the progress and success of a Suzuki student, and as such TBMS asks that participants’ families maintain an active role in the program. Students receive lessons in their chosen instrument twice a week with one semi-private lesson and one group lesson. Our youngest students have two group classes each week in lieu of a semi-private lesson. String Orchestra is an additional class for 4th and 5th year students. The Orchestra is also available to younger experienced string students at the teacher’s discretion. Students in our after-school program have several community performances throughout the year, including performances at local senior centers.
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In addition to these programs, TBMS is equipped to provide any number of music programs, residencies, and in-school presentations, including our popular “Hear It Now!” concert series.
Please contact Katie Mazzari, Director of School and Community Programs, at (212) 753-8811, ext. 221, for more information or to schedule a site visit.
Our public school programs are made possible by many funders to whom we are extremely grateful, including The Bay and Paul Foundations, The Herbert M. Citrin Foundation, Con Edison, The MUFG Foundation, New York State Council on the Arts, Signature Bank, and Sony.
This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.