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Music to my ears: Orchestra enhances learning, skills

Fine art classes allow students to have a creative outlet and foster a love for the arts. There are multiple choices for fine art classes, and they are all very contrasting. Though the classes span everything from visual arts to theatre and choir to band, orchestra is still the superior choice. 

Playing a string instrument takes a lot of skill. It takes years and years of practicing to be able to play it well. Aside from playing an instrument, it requires individuals to read music. Reading music takes practice, but once it’s learned, it is easy to learn to play an instrument that belongs to the same cleft or family. 

All instruments take a good amount of skill to play well. But being able to play a string instrument is far more difficult than almost any other instrument. Overall, being able to play any instrument takes a good amount of skill and practice, and kudos to anyone who tries.

Playing an instrument takes mental strength and focus. It also takes good hand and finger coordination. Being able to read music is a great skill to have, since that means it is possible to play any song. An even better skill to have is being able to listen to a song only once or twice and then play it in tune. Being able to sing makes it easier to play that way, since it’s easier to play a song if there are known lyrics and melodies. 

Orchestra kids aren’t as tired and stressed out as many kids from other fine arts electives. Band kids are required to practice almost every day for hours, which sounds exhausting. Orchestra kids only practice together during school hours and once or twice a week after school. Orchestra practices more when there are competitions or performances, but not at the beginning of the year or for weeks during the summer. 

There are orchestra summer camps where the kids will get into groups depending on grade level and practice every day, indoors, for about a week. Each day, they practice for about half the day with several breaks. On the last day of camp, they put on a performance for parents and friends to go see. Band summer camp lasts for two to three weeks during the summer. They either travel far away from their families, or have their daily practices at their school or some other location in town. Choir camps aren’t a thing in most schools, but it is very easy to practice singing at their homes.

Some kids and adults who don’t participate in orchestra and/or other musical activities still enjoy listening to classical orchestral music. Band music is frequently loud and pounding, and a lot of people dislike that. However, when a full orchestra is playing, the music can be  dynamic and different. The music each group plays fits both of them very well, and the majority of the time it sounds beautiful. The contrast between the sounds of the instruments makes it sound complete and full. 

Orchestra, compared to the other fine arts electives, is mentally challenging, difficult to learn, and has some of the hardest working people in it. It takes a lot of skill to play in an orchestra, but the experience is definitely a great thing to have. 

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Sophia Bradley
Sophia Bradley, Editor
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