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May 2012 Newsletter

A musical journey to Scotland

The 2012 Raasay Bass Clarinet Course participants (Clapp is third from right).

Music School student Martha Clapp, who has studied bass clarinet with Stephanie Ratté for a year and a half, recently embarked on a musical journey to Scotland. After learning about the Raasay Bass Clarinet Course in an international bass clarinet magazine, she traveled to Scotland with her granddaughter, Sharon Curley (a Music School alum who studied euphonium). The course, open to 12 musicians of all levels, includes individual lessons, master classes, workshops, ensemble work and a chance to perform in a concert.

"It was a high-powered group, which is good because you have to work harder," Clapp said. "It was an entire week of concentrated playing and an opportunity to do something you enjoy with others who have the exact same interest."

Clapp has a long history with the clarinet. She learned to play the silver clarinet in the fourth grade from her band director and played throughout high school. In 1970, Clapp's husband, a trumpet player, wanted to play in a concert band. So she bought a soprano clarinet so she could play with him. The couple played in concert bands together until 2000.

"My husband and I shared music as an activity together for years," Clapp said. "Music is imperative."

She later bought a bass clarinet and decided to learn how to play it properly, which brought her to the Music School. Her most recent performance was at one of the monthly Music School recitals at Havenwood retirement community, where she entertained the audience with stories and two musical selections.

"Martha returned from the camp a different musician," Ratté said. "Being part of a group of bass clarinetists raised her confidence level and exposed her to a lot of new concepts and music written specifically for her instrument."

To watch a video of this year's Raasay Bass Clarinet Course's final concert, click here. (Clapp is seated second from the left.)

Student artists chosen for 'Firebird'

Samantha Fune holding her artwork selected for the NH Philharmonic concert.

The artwork of seven Music School students was selected to be shown during the New Hampshire Philharmonic's performance of Stravinsky's "Firebird" at the Palace Theater on April 28. The students participated in staff member Cathy Kaplan's "Drawn to the Music" workshops during piano workshop week in December.

The seven students are:

Alice Crow
Samantha Fune
Ava Girard
Henry Kaplan
Miranda Kaplan
Marissa Payne
Emma Servadio

The Orchestra used about 130 of the 600 illustrations submitted. To see a full list of the student artists, click here.

Students compete in Granite State Competition

The following Music School piano students participated in the April 21 NHMTA Granite State Competition:

Annie Papinsick: Second Place, Junior B
Emily Goulet: Honorable Mention for Entire Program, High School B
Hannah Orr: Honorable Mention for performance of "Evening in the Country", Junior A
Mason Elle-Gelernter: Honorable Mention for performance of "The Guinea Hen", Junior B
Peter Lehmann and Arjan Orr: Participants, Junior B

Festival to benefit Music School


The Granite State Music Festival will be held June 23-24 on two stages at Concord's Kiwanis Waterfront Park, next to Everett Arena. Proceeds from the festival benefit Concord Community Music School! Many bands and musicians will be featured, including Tonkin Toys (with our very own David Tonkin, Matt Langley, Don Williams and Tim Gilmore!), Susie Burke and our very own David Surette, Ron Noyes Band and The Chris Robinson Brotherhood.

The Granite State Music Festival is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of New Hampshire's unique music culture. Its mission is to raise funds for music programs in New Hampshire. The festival is truly a "Granite State" festival, featuring primarily NH bands and performers, with the exception of two national headlining acts. In addition to showcasing New Hampshire's musical talent, all of its vendors and subcontractors are from New Hampshire, bolstering our local creative economy.

For more information or to buy tickets, click here.

Value of a teacher

Teachers touch the lives of students in many ways, and at the Music School we consider our faculty to be our most valuable asset. We would love to hear from you about how your teacher has influenced your musical growth and touched your life. Your thoughts (of any length) can be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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