How to Help Your Child Be a Memorization Whiz: 44 Presidents in Three Suzuki Songs border=0 align=

How to Help Your Child Be a Memorization Whiz: 44 Presidents in Three Suzuki Songs

April 29, 2016, 10:05 AM · If there is any question that music is central to learning, here is a case in point: five-year-old Annabel Blake happily singing the names of all 44 U.S. presidents, to the tune of Suzuki songs:

The prospect of memorizing those names from a book would likely demoralize even the most determined academic. But learning a song? Fun! Easy!

Annabel, of Omaha, Neb., has been studying the violin since she was about 2 1/2 years old from V.com member William Wolcott.

"She has been singing the Fifty Nifty United States song since she was 2 years old," said her mother, Alice Kim. "I recently read a book that described how children between pre-school and fourth grade have incredible memorization skills, and they actually love it. I never learned the presidents in order and thought this could be the next big memorization project." Keep reading...

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American Airlines Refuses Rachel Barton Pine with del Gesu on Flight from Chicago to N.M.  border=0 align=

American Airlines Refuses Rachel Barton Pine with del Gesu on Flight from Chicago to N.M.

April 28, 2016, 8:52 AM · Once again, the skies have proved not-so-friendly to those carrying musical instruments on airplanes.

On Wednesday violinist Rachel Barton Pine was denied boarding on her American Airlines evening flight from Chicago O’Hare International Airport to Albuquerque, N.M. because she was carrying her violin, the “ex-Bazzini ex-Soldat” 1742 Joseph Guarneri “del Gesu” violin, on lifetime loan to her from an anonymous patron.

Pine was the first passenger down the jet bridge. However, the captain (who would not give his name to Pine) refused to allow her to board the plane with the violin case because “its dimensions were not correct for a carry-on”. Pine flies over 100,000 miles a year with American Airlines and has flown the same plane configuration on numerous occasions, placing the violin case in the overhead compartment.

Pine shared with the captain the American Airlines policy stated on their website: "You can travel with small musical instruments as your carry-on item on a first come, first serve basis as long as it: Fits in the overhead bin; or fits under the seat in front of you."

According to Pine, the captain replied, “It is not going on because I say so.” Keep reading...

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Interview with Daniel Heifetz, Part 3: Starting the Heifetz Institute and Teaching Charisma border=0 align=

Interview with Daniel Heifetz, Part 3: Starting the Heifetz Institute and Teaching Charisma

April 26, 2016, 10:12 PM · This is PART 3 of a three-part interview with Daniel Heifetz. Click here to read:

* * *

Charisma. Can you teach it?

When Daniel Heifetz learned the devastating news that nerve damage in his arm would permanently affect his ability to play the violin, he built a new series of performances around something that always had been a strength of his: Charisma and stage presence. Heifetz formed the "Classical Band," with performances that emphasized communication over sheer virtuosity. He reached out to other artists to play along.

But eventually, "touring was becoming more difficult for me, with my fingers." It was time to retire, and to reinvent.

In 1996, Heifetz created the Heifetz International Music Institute, which by now has grown into a six-week summer program for young artists that takes place at Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, Va. At the heart of it is something he calls Communication Training, along with conventional technical study. Basically, Heifetz aims to teach technically accomplished young musicians how to draw on their own charisma. Keep reading...

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