Music for People (organization)

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For other uses, see Music for People.
Music for People
MusicForPeople Logo.jpg
Abbreviation MfP
Motto There are no "unmusical" people, only those with no musical experience
Formation 1986
Type Non-profit organization
Headquarters Goshen, Connecticut, USA
Membership 453 (2011)
President of the Board James Oshinsky, Ph.D.
Executive Director Eric Miller, Ph.D.
Staff 6
Volunteers 11
Website http://www.MusicForPeople.org/

Music for People (MfP) is a non-profit organization dedicated to music-making and music improvisation as a means of self-expression. Their primary activities include organizing workshops for improvisational music, hosting a four-year musicianship and leadership program that trains people in music facilitation, and various publications related to improvisational music.

Music for People was founded in 1986 by cellist David Darling and flautist Bonnie Insull. The core of the teaching methods center on Humanistic education.

Philosophy[edit]

The philosophy of Music for People is encapsulated in a Bill of Musical Rights that centers on the need for musical self-expression, authenticity, and acceptance of the full range of music traditions and the musical contributions of all people, regardless of their level of experience.[1]

The approach to music facilitation is generally unconventional, using a playful teaching style[2] developed by David Darling beginning with his work leading workshops as part of the Paul Winter Consort beginning in 1980. The approach to tonal and rhythmic improvisation has been found to have positive social influences, both similar to and contrasting with clinical music therapy approaches.[3]

One of the core techniques used is ensemble playing, where participants have varying levels of musical experience, come from different genres of music, and often include instruments that typically do not play together.[4]

Darling's dedication to Arts-in-Education innovation and creativity earned him the 1995 Artist of the Year Award from Young Audiences, Inc.[5]

Music for People has prompted many offshoots, such as the Improv Collective at Fredonia University[6] and the classical music program at DePauw University that incorporates music improvisation.[7]

A Musical Bill of Rights[edit]

This sums up the philosophy promoted by the organization:[1]

  • Human beings need to express themselves daily in a way that invites physical and emotional release.
  • Musical self-expression is a joyful and healthy means of communication available to absolutely everyone.
  • There are as many different ways to make music as there are people.
  • The human voice is the most natural and powerful vehicle for musical self-expression. The differences in our voices add richness and depth to music.
  • Sincerely expressed emotion is at the root of meaningful musical expression.
  • Your music is more authentically expressed when your body is involved in your musical expression.
  • The European tradition of music is only one sound. All other cultures and traditions deserve equal attention.
  • Any combination of people and instruments can make music together.
  • There are no "unmusical" people, only those with no musical experience.
  • Music improvisation is a unique and positive way to build skills for life-expression.
  • In improvisation as in life, we must be responsible for the vibrations we send one another.

Resources[edit]

The techniques used in music education have been published in a handbook on musical forms and structures,[8] as well as a set of three CDs of interviews with David Darling and Julie Weber.[9]

There are also supplementary information relating to the Musicianship and Leadership program relating to the development of activities in music workshops.[10]

Music Programs, University Courses, and Workshops by Graduates[edit]

Here are links to some of the music workshops that have been organized and facilitated by graduates of the Musicianship and Leadership program:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b David Darling (1997). "A Bill of Musical Rights". Music for People. Retrieved 2012-01-05. 
  2. ^ Micky Houlihan (1997). "Wind over the Earth". Retrieved 2012-01-05. 
  3. ^ Kalani Das (2011). The Way of Music - Creating Sound Connections in Music Therapy (First edition ed.). Denton, Texas: Sarsen Publishing. ISBN 978-1-60725-278-8. 
  4. ^ Lynn Miller (2013). SpiritArts - Transformation through Creating Art, Music and Dance (First edition ed.). Phoenixville, Pennsylvania: Expressive Therapy Press. p. 65. ISBN 978-0-615-84150-2. 
  5. ^ Houle, Arthur (April 1, 2006). "Five Minutes With ... David Darling". The American Music Teacher. 
  6. ^ David Rudge, Ph.D. (2011). "The Improv Collective". Retrieved 2012-01-05. 
  7. ^ Alexandra Alter (November 28, 2008). "Making Up the Classics". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 5 January 2012. 
  8. ^ Oshinsky, 2008
  9. ^ David Darling; Julie Weber (2008). "The Darling Conversations". Retrieved 2012-01-05. 
  10. ^ James Oshinsky (2007). "Ten Questions that can be applied to any Music for People Return to Child activity". Retrieved 2012-01-15. 

Further reading[edit]

Oshinsky, James (January 2008). Return to Child - Music for People’s Guide to Improvising Music and Authentic Group Leadership (Second Edition ed.). 

External links[edit]