“Thank you for your wonderful classes and your lovely presence. It has been a gift and a silver lining to continue to sing and dance with you during these challenging times.”
— NB, A Music Together Parent
MUSIC TOGETHER CLASSES
Will completed a Music Together training course in 2013, and has been happily leading classes in Arlington as part of Mystic Valley Music Together ever since..
The goal of Music Together is blessedly simple — to inspire families to make music together all day long. The pedagogy, however, is surprisingly complex — immersing children and their accompanying grownups in a playful mix of rhythms, musical modes and improvisation.
Music Together was started by a composer, Ken Guilmartin, and a music educator, Lili Levinowitz over thirty years ago in New Jersey. Since then it has spread around the globe, with teachers in North America, Asia, Europe, Australia and South America.
Each 30-40 minute Music Together class exposes children and their caregivers to a bunch of great songs — some traditional and some written to illuminate specific musical structures — while having a lot of fun.
And within the flow of an individual class there is lots of room for spontaneity — which includes soliciting ideas from the children as well as the grownups.
"Music Together classes provide a weekly oasis of joy and silliness for me and my participating families in the midst of challenging times," says McMillan. "And the Music Together pedagogy has changed how I approach my songwriting as well as my programs of music for adults. For example, I now incorporate many more opportunities for everyone to sing together."
"I also appreciate how precious and unusual it is to spend 30-40 minutes being playful with other human beings," he adds, "uninterrupted by cell phones, email alerts, tweets, and all of the other technology-driven distractions of the 21st century."
When Covid-19 entered our lives, Will began offering Music Together classes via Zoom, "which has worked better for some families than for others," he explains. "Then we got permission from the town of Arlington to hold classes in a local public park, which lasted for over a year. Now we are back making music together indoors in Arlington Heights — with all of the adults in class wearing face masks — just to be on the safe side."
For more information about his Music Together — and maybe sign up for a class — you can click here.
To learn more about the history and development of Music Together, you can click here.
And to see a few photos of Will in action, you can scroll down this page...