Dennis AsKew, ITEA President
Teachers. We’ve all had them–and still have them all around us, if we choose to see them. They can be that person sitting next to us in band, perhaps a conductor, perhaps in a more formal teacher/student relationship. Whatever the situation, we all continue to learn about music, about our instruments, about our shared past, and to some degree about the legacy we leave for future generations.
As I was reading through some past issues of our Journal, a particular column by former ITEA President Skip Gray really stuck in my head, and I wanted to share that with you again–many of you probably read this the first time it was printed, but it’s still great advice. The column centered around what we can do to help make a positive impact on our musical world(s). Skip made the following points:
- Keep working at improving yourself. Make a concerted effort to continue your artistic and technical growth with the continuing goal to become the best you can be.
- Help somebody else. Without being overbearing or giving advice that is unwanted, share your ability and expertise with someone in need. This can be a younger person, a retiree, or even a colleague.
- Try something new–innovate! Music is about communicating ideas to an audience, even sometimes creating a dialogue…. Look for new ways, different methods, or fresh venues in which to communicate.
- Invest effort to make ITEA better. By becoming involved in ITEA, you are helping many tuba and euphonium players throughout the world. That is impact. Write an article for the Journal or web site. Volunteer to help the association with projects. Seek and encourage new members. Make a financial contribution to a scholarship, commission, or other programs. Participate at international and regional tuba-euphonium conferences.
Number three in Skip’s list was the impetus for my opening statement–we’re all involved in developing the next generation of tuba and euphonium performers, ’cause if we don’t, no one else will!
Regarding becoming involved–there are many things that can be done, our new Executive Director, Jennifer Jester, will be happy to hear from you. I’m sure, as she gets going and discovers all those “niche” things that we need help with. Another group that you can talk to is our new Board of Directors–if you have concerns, questions, etc. that you’d like share with someone, they’re all ears (as are the rest of the Executive Committee, too!). They are John Stevens, Jim Gourlay, Bart Collins, Mike Lynch, Dave Fedderly, Gene Pokorny, Demondrae Thurman, Jim Self, Velvet Brown, Markus Theinert, and Kevin Stees. A huge thank you to all of them for agreeing to serve in this capacity!
I hope your fall is going well and your music making is enjoyable!