Guest Clinicians Visit with FHSD Middle School Bands and Choirs

Posted on 04/23/2019
Middle School band practice

This spring, middle school music students and teachers in FHSD had the opportunity to work with and learn from a variety of decorated guest clinicians. These talented visitors traveled the District working with students and directors in their own schools on fundamental skills and music they were preparing for concerts.

The band clinician was Mr. Chip DeStefano, a middle school band director from Chicago whose bands have earned both state and national recognition. Mr. DeStefano brought a wealth of expertise and new rehearsal techniques for each ensemble. His passion for band and music education for young instrumentalists was clear, as each ensemble was pushed to play to the best of their abilities.

Dr. Stuart Chapman Hill, the associate conductor of choirs at Webster University, was the clinician for the middle school choirs. Dr. Hill was energetic and brought many new ideas to our middle school choirs on how to be better performers. Each school has its own style and Dr. Hill was great at praising each choir’s strengths but also giving criticism in a very encouraging, instructive manner. Many students commented on how they had fun with Dr. Hill but also felt their choir had really improved with his guidance.

“Having another band director in front of your own group is such an enriching experience for both the students and the directors,” said Saeger Band Director Shannon Crepps. “It allows you to get an outside perspective, hear things in a different way, and see things in a different light.  We like to model for our students that directors can still improve, just like students, and learning is a lifelong process.” All involved had a great time and were able to immediately apply new skills to their music making!   

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