Dennis AsKew, ITEA President
Artistically inspired, pedagogically challenged, mentally saturated, emotionally expired— that’s how most, if not all, of us left Denver. That’s how everyone should always leave a conference, whether it was an ITEC, the Army Conference, or one of the upcoming Regional Conferences. There was so much camaraderie, excellence in every session, mind blowing technique, thought provoking classes and discussions…if you’ve not attended a workshop, clinic, conference, or whatever lately or, even ever, do your best to get to one in the next year if at all possible. It’s worth it folks, just for your musical soul!
Whew. ITEC is done, all the summer stuff is over, and now it’s back to it. Whenever fall comes around (or even late summer), for most of us it’s a renewal point. I don’t care if you are a student, teacher, or work in a non-educational (academic) environment. Coming off of the summer, with its vacations and holidays, it’s a time for refocusing, starting anew, and thinking about new goals, new ideas, and such. For the teachers, it’s new students (and/or new committee work…bleh…) for the students, maybe a new teacher, new solos to work on, etc. for others, a new concert season with the orchestra or band—whatever it may be—we all need to look at what we do with fresh eyes. This is our time for “spring cleaning.” Some of the new ideas you’ll be reading about in this journal but also on the website and in future journals include deeming 2008 as the Year of the Tuba (followed closely by a Year of the Euphonium). We will be putting forth ideas on programming, generating new audiences, and generally helping to further establish a greater, better understanding of what we do. We are working on the finishing touches of a summer chamber program that hopefully will be widespread and low cost enough that many of you will be able to participate—watch for details on this program in the coming journals and on the website. Membership drive—you are hereby officially challenged to find one new member and bring them “into the fold” of ITEA—many things have changed and are continuing to change to provide our members with new and additional resources and opportunities, allowing all of us to make music-making better, easier, and hopefully more enjoyable! There are more things in the mix, but that’s enough of a taste for now. If you want to be involved in helping to make these things happen, please notify me or contact any member of the Executive Committee.
And finally, how are you doing with my earlier challenge from the previous journal’s President Column? Have you taken someone to a live concert? If not, get on it! If so, and you took an “uninitiated” person to a tuba or euphonium performance, how’d it go? Send me a report! I’ll post these reports in my PresBlog (which admittedly hasn’t been updated lately, but will be soon…).