18 Cape Schools Participate in Eighth Annual Music Memory Concert

May 31st at Cape Cod Church in East Falmouth
Students from Ezra Baker School in Dennis at the 2015 Music Memory event (Cape Conservatory photo)

Students from all over Cape Cod will once again gather to showcase their Music Memory skills on Wednesday, May 31. The Cape Symphony will perform classical pieces for the students to identify – sometimes within just a couple of notes!

Fourteen schools will be attending this year’s concert at Cape Cod Church in East Falmouth, while another four will live-stream the event at their respective schools. Some of the towns with schools attending live include Barnstable, Chatham, Dennis-Yarmouth, Falmouth, Orleans, and Truro.

“This concert is half pop quiz and half celebration,” said Executive Director of the Cape Conservatory Stephanie Weaver.  “The students get to test their memory of the selected compositions in the most fun way possible – a concert with a live orchestra – and have a celebration of their new-found knowledge with other students from across Cape Cod.”

The nationally-recognized Music Memory curriculum provides students in 2nd through 8th grade an in-depth study of 12-16 selected compositions each year. The music chosen is from the five historical periods: Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic and Contemporary.

“This year, students studied a range of composers including Mozart, Bach and Brahms,” said Weaver. “Throughout the school year, they engaged in a range of activities to help solidify their learning, from creative and structured movement and singing to performing on rhythm and melody instruments.”

The Cape Conservatory provides specialized training sessions for music teachers that opted into the program. They received teaching tools such as video maps, recordings and lesson plans to help them engage the students in a more meaningful way.

A chamber ensemble from the Falmouth Chorale will be singing on four selections during the concert (Artistic Director, John Yankee). In addition, dancers from the Cape Conservatory Youth Ballet will be featured during one of the three full-length pieces presented as part of the concert. The dancers will perform with the orchestra under the direction of Jane E. Caputo.

“This is truly the most thorough and fun way to teach students, or anyone for that matter, about classical music. There will likely be former Music Memory students years from now that still remember ‘Piano Sonata No. 8’ because they were able to immerse themselves in the music both visually and aurally in the 5th grade,” said Weaver.

The 2017 Music Memory concert received contributions from the Brotherton, Hermann, Joan Bentinck-Smith and Elaine F. Stepanek Foundations, Cape Cod Foundation, South Shore Playhouse Association, Massachusetts Cultural and Mid-Cape Cultural Councils, and live streaming was made possible through a donation from the Brabson Library & Education Foundation.

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