Thanksgiving ’19 Update

It hardly seems possible, but Thanksgiving is already this upcoming Thursday.  My, how this semester has flown!  I remember thinking back in September that this Fall ’19 Semester, in particular, had gotten off to a really great start, and while there have been the occasional ups and downs, this semester has remained quite exceptional, with many, many students listening to their CDs frequently, practicing consistently, and coming to group class regularly.  And as the old saying goes, “the proof is in the pudding,” meaning, in this case, that the results in greater ability, confidence, and maturity are there.

I want to take a moment to specifically thank the students and parents who attended group class so regularly throughout the semester.  We had a really exceptional semester of groups, and every week it brought a smile to my face to see students learning alongside their friends and classmates, often with their parents participating right along with them.  The older my own children get, the more I understand how hard it can be to give up time on another weeknight, and your efforts are not lost on us.  Group classes really are almost the “magic ingredient” in everything that we do – letting students hear and observe what’s going to be coming up as “new” for them, giving them opportunity to practice everything that is “review” for them, building a community of others pursuing the same goals as them, and developing skills that can’t be taught the same way 1-on-1.  So, truly: thank you!

And in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I want to make sure that you all know just how much Kirby and I appreciate each and every single one of you – parents, students, siblings, grandparents – everyone who makes this learning opportunity possible for the students we work with.  We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: Kirby and I both feel like the families that make up West County Strings are incredibly special, and West County Strings wouldn’t be what it is without each and every single one of you and your commitment to providing the opportunity for your children to learn, and grow, and develop in unique and powerful ways that only studying a musical instrument can bring.  So, thank you for being here, and helping us create a warm and nurturing environment in which excellence can be pursued and achieved!

Thanksgiving Break

Now, as much as we love all of you, we’ll be taking a break the week of Thanksgiving so there will be no lessons the week of November 25-30.  We hope you all enjoy some time to rest, relax, and be with friends and family, whether here in St. Louis or elsewhere.

Likewise, there will be no group classes, because group classes are on break until the New Year.

So, take the week off, but keep on listening to your CDs and pick up your instruments to practice a bit each day, because as soon as we come back from Thanksgiving Break, we have our…

Fall Solo Recitals


Our Fall Solo Recitals this year will be held on the afternoon of Sunday, December 8 in the KREW House at Chesterfield Presbyterian Church.  This means that we will only have one short week to get in performance shape after Thanksgiving Break, so take the opportunity to practice more in your time off from school, not less!

You should have received an email detailing which recital you have been assigned to.  If you are unsure about this or any other information about the recitals, please ask your teacher as soon as possible.

Piano rehearsals in preparation for the recitals will be held on Tuesday, December 2, and if need be also on Monday, December 3.  You can sign up for a rehearsal time here.  While you’re signing up, please also stop by the reception sign-up sheet to let us know if you’d like to help set up, bring food or drinks, or help clean up after your recital’s reception.  We couldn’t make it all happen without you!

Holiday Play-Along Party

For the second year, the Garcia-Dominguez family has most graciously offered to host a holiday party for the studio!  We are so looking forward to this opportunity to sight-read some holiday tunes, learn a few more tunes by ear, enjoy some good food and drinks, give students the opportunity to develop friendships with their fellow studio-mates, and have the chance to visit with you all more ourselves.  So, here’s what you need to know:

Who: All West County Strings students and their families.

What: An informal holiday party with food, drinks, sight-reading, some Suzuki-style learning by ear, and music-themed party games.

When: Sunday, December 22 from 2-4 p.m.

Where: The Garcia-Dominguez’s (address will be on cards we hand out in lessons in the weeks following Thanksgiving Break).

Why: It’s so valuable and important to provide students with fun, low-pressure, memory-making musical opportunities that help them build community and stay motivated!

How: Simply sign up to bring a food or drink to share, bring your violin or viola, a foldable stand if you have one, and meet us there!


There’s so many good things on the horizon, and we look forward to enjoying them all with you.  But first, we hope you all have a wonderful, restful Thanksgiving.  We’re certainly thankful for you!