Category Archives: Learning

Monterey Band Practice Examples – Movie Favourites

Here are the audio examples for Monterey Concert Band practice:

Theme From Jurrasic Park:

Chariots Of Fire:

The Man From Snowy River:

Forrest Gump – Main Title (Feather Theme):

Somewhere Out There:

The John Dunbar Theme:

Raiders March:

Apollo 13 (End Credits):

Theme From E.T. (The Extra-Terrestrial:

Star Trek – The Motion Picture:

Back To The Future:


Student Recognition

Summer 2016

Congratulations to successful RCM exam candidates Jennifer, Jamie, Daniel and Anna!

Congratulations to Alexander on passing RCM Level 2 piano exams with Honours!

Winter 2016

Congratulations to Raphael & Andrea on passing RCM Level 3 piano exams with First Class Honours!

Summer 2015

Congratulations to my Royal Conservatory of Music practical examination candidates. All my students passed – two with ‘Honours’ and five with ‘First Class Honours’ in the flute, alto saxophone and piano categories. ‘Well Done,’ to Raphael, Jamie, Anna, Mykenzy, Kyle, Jacob and Simone!

– Joe

Monterey Concert Band

Joe is conducting at the Monterey Recreation Centre on Thursdays, from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.

We are playing an excerpt from Tchaikovsky’s Opus 39, arranged by James Curnow, from the ‘Album for the Young:’

Here are the other examples for the Monterey Concert Band:

















Could Playing Music Improve a Child’s Brain?

Children who play the violin or study piano could be learning more than just Mozart. A University of Vermont College of Medicine child psychiatry team has found that musical training might also help kids focus their attention, control their emotions and diminish their anxiety. Credit: © Nataliya Hora / Fotolia
Credit: © Nataliya Hora / Fotolia

Children who play the violin or study piano could be learning more than just Mozart. A University of Vermont College of Medicine child psychiatry team has found that musical training might also help kids focus their attention, control their emotions and diminish their anxiety. Their research is published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.

James Hudziak, M.D., professor of psychiatry and director of the Vermont Center for Children, Youth and Families, and colleagues including Matthew Albaugh, Ph.D., and graduate student research assistant Eileen Crehan, call their study “the largest investigation of the association between playing a musical instrument and brain development.”

The research continues Hudziak’s work with the National Institutes of Health Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Study of Normal Brain Development. Using its database, the team analyzed the brain scans of 232 children ages 6 to 18.

As children age, the cortex — the outer layer of the brain — changes in thickness. In previous analysis of MRI data, Hudziak and his team discovered that cortical thickening or thinning in specific areas of the brain reflected the occurrence of anxiety and depression, attention problems, aggression and behavior control issues even in healthy kids — those without a diagnosis of a disorder or mental illness. With this study, Hudziak wanted to see whether a positive activity, such as music training, would influence those indicators in the cortex.

The study supports The Vermont Family Based Approach, a model Hudziak created to establish that the entirety of a young person’s environment — parents, teachers, friends, pets, extracurricular activities — contributes to his or her psychological health. “Music is a critical component in my model,” Hudziak says.

The authors found evidence they expected — that music playing altered the motor areas of the brain, because the activity requires control and coordination of movement. Even more important to Hudziak were changes in the behavior-regulating areas of the brain. For example, music practice influenced thickness in the part of the cortex that relates to “executive functioning, including working memory, attentional control, as well as organization and planning for the future,” the authors write.

A child’s musical background also appears to correlate with cortical thickness in “brain areas that play a critical role in inhibitory control, as well as aspects of emotion processing.”

The findings bolster Hudziak’s hypothesis that a violin might help a child battle psychological disorders even better than a bottle of pills. “We treat things that result from negative things, but we never try to use positive things as treatment,” he says.

Such an approach may prove difficult to accomplish. According to the study’s authors, research from the U.S. Department of Education indicates that three-quarters of U.S. high school students “rarely or never” take extracurricular lessons in music or the arts.

“Such statistics, when taken in the context of our present neuroimaging results,” the authors write, “underscore the vital importance of finding new and innovative ways to make music training more widely available to youths, beginning in childhood.”

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Vermont. The original article was written by Carolyn Shapiro. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

Journal Reference:

  1. James Hudziak, M.D. et al. Cortical Thickness Maturation and Duration of Music Training: Health-Promoting Activities Shape Brain Development.Journal of American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, December 2014 DOI: 10.1016/j.jaac.2014.06.015 show

Cite This Page:

University of Vermont. “Could playing Tchaikovsky’s ‘Nutcracker’ and other music improve kids’ brains?.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 December 2014. <>

Canadian Music Week


Congratulations to the following students for their participation in the BC Registered Music Teachers Halloween concert at Gordon Head United church ‘Costume Capers’ on Saturday evening.

Timothy Baillargeon played ‘Royal March of the Lion’ from ‘Carnival of the Animals by Camille Saint Saens on the alto saxophone.

Andrea  Brkic played ‘Etude in D minor, No. 65’ by Cornelius Gurlitt from her RCM 2 piano selections.

Ruth Morton played ‘Skyfall’ by Adele from the James Bond movie ‘Skyfall’, on the alto saxophone.

The next opportunity to participate in this ongoing series will be on Saturday 22nd November at 7pm, when we are celebrating ‘Canadian Music Week’.

– Cheers,


Performance Opportunity

 The BC Registered Music Teachers are having their Halloween concert on Saturday evening October 25th at 7pm. It is called ‘Costume Capers’. Students are encouraged to wear fancy dress, but it is not compulsory. The venue is Gordon Head United Church on Tyndall Road; good piano and plenty of parking. There will be photos and treats.

This is a very good opportunity to see a variety of pieces, and gain performance and public speaking skills. I will be there to accompany and/or assist.

The closing date for entries is Monday evening 9 pm, October 20th. Please send me your name, age (kids), title of piece and composer. I will forward the information to the organisers who will make a programme.

There is a time limit per studio. There is not space for all of you. I can accept up to the first five students who send me their details.



What is the Monterey Concert Band Working on?

Here are the selections we are working on in the Monterey Concert Band where I conduct on Thursday, from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.

Kingsland Spring:
Looking Past the Shadows:

Broadway Favourites:

Beauty and the Beast:
Don’t Cry for Me Argentina:
Get Me to the Church on Time:
I Dreamed a Dream:
Go Go Go Joseph:
The Phantom of the Opera:
Seventy-Six Trombones:
Concert B-flat Tuning Notes: