American Composers Orchestra - Innovating Right Before Your Ears

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For information contact:

Kevin James
Director of Education
212-977-8495, x252












Songwriter's Factory

For students in 6th Grade through High School
WITH or WITHOUT musical experience.

The Songwriter's Factory program immerses students in music making and leads them through the process of writing and performing their own songs.

Classes initially take the form of a drumming circle, to introduce and develop rhythmic skills, self confidence and creativity. As the group progresses, concepts of melody, harmony and form are introduced, explored and put into practice.

Approaches to lyrics and word choice can either be coordinated with regular school curriculum and teachers or handled through visits from Teaching Artists drawn from New York City's top slam and performance poets.

Students work in closely cooperative teams to develop both a sense of professionalism and pride in their work. All sessions are hands-on, creativity and outcome based, intensive learning sessions.

Depending on the total number of sessions, Songwriter's Factory can involve up to two guest artist visits. These usually take the form of a kick-off event to get the students excited and active in music making, and a second visit to work with the students on performing their own songs. However the first visit can take place midstream and/or the second can be used as a culminating event if desired.

Music Factory programs of ACO are designed to promote student achievement, inspire creativity and develop baseline transferable skills through close engagement with some of the worlds finest composers and musicians.

Taking unique advantage of one of the city’s most underutilized resources - New York is home to more accomplished composers than any other place in the world - ACO Music Factory programs are hands-on minds-on, performance based activities aimed at students from the 4th-12th grades and are appropriate for in-school or after-school settings.

All provide high-impact learning opportunities for music students of any level, and many are appropriate for schools and students without musical experience. For most ACO Music Factory programs the length and number of artist visits is adaptable to the needs of the school, from a single event to a full semester or year.

For 35 years the ACO has been the only orchestra in the world dedicated to the creation, performance, preservation and promotion of music by American composers. Since it’s founding the orchestra has commissioned and premiered more new works by American composers than any other orchestra. ACO serves as an incubator of ideas, research and talent, as a catalyst for growth and change among orchestras, and as an advocate for American composers and their music.

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