• Wanda Cook

ENSEMBLES FIRST at YACM

Updated: Aug 20


Why are ensembles an important part of YACM’s music program? Rehearsing and performing with a group stimulates the skills that motivate learning. The YACM “Ensemble First” initiative aims to prioritize the positive effects of participating in an ensemble as central to the music education experience.


During ensembles students apply the complexities of musicianship in an accelerated atmosphere. The important markers of musicianship are reading music, hearing music, blending in a group, soloing, following a conductor, staying in time, and overcoming the inclination to give up in face of challenges. More advanced ensemble skills involve performing one’s part with an ear and intention to make everyone’s part sound better. This means one is using their artistry and technique to augment the whole performance.


Another reason why we support an “Ensemble First” approach, is because performing together builds confidence and empowers positive self-identity with music. Children grow in confidence with each performance. They are inspired by their peers and aspire to be more skilled. They see themselves as part of musical world.


Lastly, Ensembles are fun, and where there is fun, there is learning, a personal feeling of success, and the likelihood of continued participation which, in turn, leads to ongoing development. In ensembles, YACM students make friends, learn to admire their mentor directors, and have fun working toward and accomplishing a performance goal together.


"Ensembles First" help YACM students become musicians by helping them enjoy their music together. Together YACM Students

· Try Hard

· Never Give Up

· Risk Safely

· Contribute to their Community


What Ensemble is the Right Choice?

YACM CORE-Arts and Little-Arts Students are assigned an ensemble included in their tuition. Once a student chooses their “major” (private lessons in _____), they are assigned to an ensemble.


Piano Chorus or Jazz Band

Voice Chorus

Guitar Rhythm and Rock, Concert Band, or Jazz Band

Drums / Percussion Rhythm and Rock, Concert Band or Jazz Band

Violin Strings 1, Strings 2,

Viola Strings 1, Strings 2,

Cello Strings 1, Strings 2,

Woodwinds Concert Band, or Jazz Band

Brass Concert Band, or Jazz Band


More Advanced Ensembles require audition for placement, + and extra fee.


Solano Youth Chamber Orchestra

M80’s Rock Band

TnT Rock Band

Theater and Scenes

Smolder Jazz Band

Solano Youth Theatre

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