Tag Archives: 2021

Spring ’21: Upcoming Concerts

Hello WCS Students & Families!

We’re headed into perhaps the most fun part of the school year – that time when we get to share our music with one another and see how all of our hard work has paid off in musical growth, development, and maturity. As always, the primary ways we do this are with our Spring Solo Recitals and our Spring Festival Group Performance. Here’s some preliminary details about both!

Spring Solo Recitals

Our Spring Solo Recitals are for all of our students and will be held this year on Sunday, May 16 from 1-5pm at the Parks, Recreation, and Arts building at Schroeder Park in Manchester. St. Louis County regulations change from week to week, but we expect to be allowed to have 35-55 people in the performing hall at a time, which means we’ll be dividing students up into 3-4 recitals throughout the afternoon.

Kirby and I are working now to put together balanced programs that highlight a little bit of everything from the first steps of learning to some of the more advanced. If you need to be placed earlier or later in the afternoon for scheduling reasons, please let us know so we can accommodate to the best of our ability.

Piano rehearsals for students playing concerto repertoire or other Book 4+ repertoire will be held with Vera Parkin on Saturday, May 15 at Lacefield Music in Chesterfield. (We will add Monday, May 10 if everyone cannot fit into the schedule on the 15th). A sign up sheet will be sent by email to those who need rehearsals.

Spring Festival Group Performance

Our Spring Festival Group Performance is for anyone who’s been regularly participating in weekly in Tuesday evening group classes. Our Spring Festival this year will be held on Tuesday, May 25 in the Amphitheater at Schroeder Park in Manchester. The concert will be at 6:30pm, with dress rehearsals from 5:00-6:15.

Here is the repertoire list for this year’s Spring Festival, so that you know what to focus on in your at-home practicing, and what we’ll be focusing on in group classes between now and the performance:

Chicken on a Fencepost Variations on E & A
Vivaldi Concerto No. 11 for 2 Violins, RV 56: 1. Allegro – Adagio e spiccato – Allegro
Bach “Little” Fugue in G Minor, BWV 578
Rameau Gavotte
Veracini Gigue
Seitz Concerto No. 5 In D Major, Op. 2: 1. Allegro moderato
Gavotte in G Minor
Minuet 3 / Bach Minuet (Bk. 3)
Two Grenadiers
Hunters’ Chorus
Chorus from Judas Maccabaeus
Cannon in 4 Voices
Etude
Allegro
Brother John
Go Tell Aunt Rhody
Twinkle Theme & Variations

Violas, you should have duets to all of the Suzuki repertoire except for Seitz Concerto No. 2 in D Major, Gavotte in G Minor (which you’ll be playing melody on), and Hunters’ Chorus (which you’ll also be playing melody on).

That should cover it for now, and more specific information for each of these events will follow as the particular event draws nearer. Until then, happy practicing!

2021 “Virtuoso Club” Student Opportunities

Hello WCS Students & Families!

Every spring, we look forward to the opportunities made available to our students through the “Virtuoso Club,” one of St. Louis’ local chapters of the Missouri Federation of Music Clubs. These include:

Spring Festival

Available to the widest range of student ages and levels, the Spring Festival gives students the opportunity to prepare a required piece, and a choice piece – or a required concerto movement – to perform for a judge. Students will then receive judge’s feedback, and earn a yearly ribbon and points towards trophies (several of you are on the cusp of earning your next trophy this year!). It’s a great opportunity to prepare perform under a bit of pressure, but still in a warm, safe, nurturing environment that’s designed to encourage not to critique. And the annual achievements serve as a great motivator for many students.


Music Camp Scholarship Competition

The Music Camp Scholarship Competition is held in two levels of competition, and available to students in 7th – 8th – 9th and 10th – 11th – 12th grade, respectively. Winners can earn up to $500 to be used towards a music education opportunity, and still receive judges feedback, ribbons, and progress towards trophies like Spring Festival participants, so it’s a great opportunity to take advantage of for all who are able. Prior year’s winners are not eligible to participate, which means that we’ll have a few students who can’t compete in this competition this year, but will be able to again next year. But we do have quite a few students for whom this would be a great opportunity!


District Competition

The District Competition is reserved for students in 10th – 11th – 12th grade, and offers winners the opportunity to compete at the State Competition. It is a higher level of competition, and serves as a great preparatory experience as well as a nice honor for winners to use on resumes. Prior year’s Camp Scholarship Competition winners should strongly consider competition in this competition this year.


Many of you will be used to participating in the Camp Scholarship and District Competitions at the Steinway Piano Gallery on Dorsett Rd. in March, and at the Spring Festival at St. Charles Community College in April. However, due to the ongoing difficulty of securing locations for large groups of participants, the Virtuoso Club has decided to hold this year’s events by online video submission this year, as they did in 2020. This means all participants can prepare performing with a prerecorded accompaniment track, and submit their performance at their convenience.

The cost for entry into all events is $30. Please make entry fees out to West County Strings, and we’ll submit a single payment for the studio. Registrations are due from by February 15, and video submissions are due by April 8th. Although that seems like a long way away, we’ve already started preparing in many instances, and should certainly start preparing as soon as possible for anyone who would like to participate! Let’s all make sure to discuss your opportunities in your next lesson.

New Year ’21 Update

Hello WCS Students & Families,

Welcome to 2021 at West County Strings! Kirby and I are so looking forward to each and every teaching moment, learning opportunity, and continuing to develop and deepen our relationship with each of you during this upcoming year. By the end of 2021, we hope and trust that each of you will look back at a vast chasm between your ability when you started the year as compared to where you ended up!

Here’s a few key dates for the beginning of 2021 to note:

Private lessons will resume on Wednesday, January 6 and run through Saturday, May 29.

Group classes will resume on Tuesday evenings at the beginning of March and run through May.

Missouri Federation of Music Clubs opportunities are available through the local “Virtuoso Club.” These include the chance at a $500 scholarship as a winner of the Summer Music Camp Scholarship Competition, District Honors and the chance to compete at the State level through District Competition, and a performance opportunities, insightful judge feedback, ribbons and points towards trophies as part of the Spring Festival. All events will be held via video submission this spring, and your teacher will be in touch regarding repertoire selection and requirements, if you have not begun preparing your repertoire already.

And of course, as always, we will have our Spring Solo Recitals and Spring Festival Group Performance to look forward to and work hard to prepare for, as well!

I think that about sums it up for now, so we look forward to seeing you all again beginning on the 6th, and we trust that you’ve been listening, reviewing, and practicing new material over the break. If you’ve fallen a bit rusty, now would be a great time to dust things off and buff them up. We’ll see you soon!