Cello Christmas Concert
Saturday, December 7,
3:00 PM till 6:00 PM At QEPCCC.
This year, our Red, Magenta, Blue, and Yellow cello groups will not perform at the OSA multi instrument concert on December 15.
It has been a fall of transitions, and some considerable problems, for your Cello Group Teachers. We teachers have had concerns for a number of years about the amount of time involved in preparing for a concert that uses huge teacher, student and family energy resources, is at a terribly busy time for everyone, on a prime pre-Christmas weekend.
Teachers must donate a full Sunday of their time, free, to this event.
In order to give a creditable performance, ALL groups in November and December are devoted to preparation of music that, historically, is not chosen by us, and has often been of dubious pedagogical benefit to our students. Last year, in the wake of similar problems at the November SAO conference, there were utterly unacceptable actions affecting the cellos, taken by another teacher, during the actual Junior concert. An added complication this year, is that the newly amalgamated Halton-Mississauga Youth Orchestra has a major concert that same weekend and half of Red Group are members of this Orchestra. It would be an unwise burden to put on them.
The late announcement of this December 7th Cello Concert is a result of St Paul’s Church, which we had booked for the Christmas Concert, sending, immediately after the Hallowe’en Concert, to Jo-Anne, as the signer of the contract, (although I was injured and not present at the event) , a formal letter of complaint, citing the extremely poor condition in which the Sanctuary, Narthex and Balcony were supposedly left, and forbidding us to serve food of any sort in the Narthex in future. This letter was not friendly. We were told we could rent yet another room elsewhere downstairs in the facility at greatly increased cost of course.
Given that there are conflicting views of the situation: from the parents and teachers who were last out, versus the report from St Paul’s custodian, (leading to a ” he said/she said” situation), whatever the “facts”, it is their church and we can be summarily asked not to return, at any time without recourse. We have also been forbidden to move the piano. Given all this, and the small size of the room, we felt it prudent to relocate the concert, and received confirmation from QEPCCC just this week.
I feel it is unprofessional to give more detail here. If you feel truly concerned about this, please be in touch with either Genevieve or Jo-Anne and we will be glad to discuss this matter privately.
Our new, December 7th Concert is based on the lovely model that the flutes use for a similar concert every year.
We will feature some advanced Suzuki repertoire, plus ensemble music, some seasonal, from Red group and some from Blue as well. There will be some carols, and, some solo performances. All students will participate.
If your child would like to perform a solo, please tell your teacher at the next lesson. Subject to teacher approval, solos can be performed at any level from Book 1 through Book 7.
We also need an accompanist, (as, sadly, Paul M. cannot be there) who will be paid a modest honorarium. If you can help in this way, please let Jo-Anne know asap.
Also, as a result of the food clean-up issue, while we enjoy cookies and drinks after, and hope these can be arranged, your teachers feel that this matter needs to be taken over in full by a group of parents. Genevieve and I (plus our husbands) have, historically, been the last out and have been the go to persons re food at concerts. We have over the years, pre arranged who will bring what, overseen (and often done by ourselves), all the set up and clean up, taken leftovers home, vaccuumed, stacked tables -the whole 9 yards. (I do not in anyway minimize the hard parent work at the Halloween concert this year, saying this. I refer to the last 15 years or so) In fact, often we are so beleaguered that we ourselves end up eating nothing, we are so busy. This happened to Genevieve this year at Hallowe’en and has been the case for me as well in the past, on several occasions.
QEPCCC has relaxed their rules and now allows post concert refreshments to be brought into the facility. We would like a nice, Christmas cookie/squares, fancy drink, pretty table set-up.
However, we are done being in charge of it!
If you are willing to do this, I am sure many willing hands will be available.
Please step forward if you can. The teachers will oversee the concert. The parents will oversee, entirely, refreshments, with no teacher input.
We hope this happens :it is a nice touch, especially at Christmas.
Repertoire, concert order, and dress detail will follow in a later post. I know this is a lot to absorb. Thanks for reading this long post!
Your loving Cello Group Teachers, Genevieve and Jo-Anne.