Welcome To Music - Musicnotes Newsletter
In This Issue
New album - 'Beat Street!'
End of year shows and holiday programs
FREE Workshop opportunity for 2014
Looking for a stress free start to 2014?
The benefits of Music Education
What's coming up?
What's been happening?
Hearts in Harmony Community Music
Looking ahead?
What people are saying
ISME conference Brazil 2014
Come on...be our friend!
Phil's PHILosophy

Dear John Smith,

Welcome to the October 2013 edition of 'Musicnotes' - can you believe it's October already and Christmas is suddenly just round the corner? Down here in the south we are heading into the last term of the year whereas up in the north you are probably still coming to grips with the new school year.

Either way we hope you find this edition valuable as we have loads of goodies for you, including info on our new album 'Beat Street!', complete with FREE downloadable activities, a fabulous article on the benefits of music education, info on end of school year events and summer holiday programs, an opportunity to present at The International Society of Music Educators (ISME) Conference in Brazil next year, as well as the opportunity to attend a Welcome to Music PLAYshop for FREE! Plus loads more so put your feet up and enjoy...

Yours in harmony,

Susie & Phil

New album - 'Beat Street!'

Yes, it's time to stop beating around the bush and start beating the drum, as our new baby is finally here! Judging by the response we have had so far in Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Sydney and Perth, it is doing very well so thank you to all those who have ordered a copy.

We are describing 'Beat Street!' as an 'Early childhood/Primary' album, as there will be plenty of activities for kids from 3-10 years. It includes songs and stories about dinosaurs, Aussie Rules footy and pirates, plus dances, 'hello' songs and traditional songs from Israel, Africa and Torres Strait Islands. With opportunities to sing rounds, move, and play instruments this will be a welcome addition to your classroom music collection.

*BONUS - we now have FREE downloads for some of the activities from 'Beat Street', including Flash cards and Pirate craft activities. Check it out here.

Click here to read a review by Jane Nicholas from the Western Australian Orff Association (WAOSA)

Click here to see some pics of Susie and Phil and the Young Voices of Melbourne choristers in the recording studio putting down some of the new tracks

And click here if you'd like to listen to sample tracks and watch videos of songs being workshopped.

End of year shows and holiday programs

For those in preschools, kinders and schools in and around Melbourne who may be looking for a fun musical concert or show in December, we have limited dates available but you will need to act now! We can also offer fun and interactive summer holiday programs in January 2014. If you would like to know more please contact Janie on 1300 769 803 or janie@welcometomusic.net

FREE Workshop opportunity for 2014

Would you like to attend a Welcome to Music PLAYshop in 2014 for free? If you or someone you know is connected to an Early Learning Centre, Preschool, Kindergarten or Primary school who would be willing to host a 2 hour Welcome to Music workshop, they will receive 2 free registrations! (up to $198 value!). We need a good space (preferably carpeted) with chairs and tea and coffee facilities. These PLAYshops are a great opportunity for you and your staff to improve your skills - and they are a lot of fun and a great networking opportunity too!

This offer is also avaiiable for our interstate friends but we would need to allow for travel costs etc.

We can also provide half and full day workshops for Early childhood and Primary -please let us know if you have any ideas re facilities in and around your location.

Phil is also available for regular music classes and/or a one off 'Funny Phil's Music Show' for your centre and we also offer Artists in Schools programs. Please contact us if you are interested and would like to know more.

“We had a fantastic night with Phil's session - he was great fun, very motivating and he had all 35 of us up singing and dancing.” Jenny Donegan, Co-Ordinator, Family Day Care, City of Monash.

Looking for a stress free start to 2014?

If you're looking for a fun and interactive staff day to kickstart the new school year and make sure your staff are unstressed as they begin the new year this could be just the PD you need.....'I'm not stressed - I always look like this! A lighthearted look at a serious topic'

Did you know that daily stress is one of the most dangerous things the human body is faced with? It is so destructive, it actually degrades the function of the body and mind and results in most ailments, including anxiety, depression, weight gain, chronic fatigue syndrome, lack of concentration, low libido, and many others.

Even worse, stress is considered by many leading medical doctors as the cause for more than 85% of all diseases including cancer, and has the power to destroy our mental perception of ourselves and the people around us -- which creates even more stress!

The good news is…"You can manage stress." And one of the best ways to do that is to hear Phil's very funny BUT important presentation called 'I'm not stressed - I always look like this!'.

In this highly interactive and entertaining presentation, Phil puts forward the notion that although we have stress in our lives, it’s how we manage it that can make the difference between thriving, simply surviving, or worse!

Phil will help you uncover the myths of what stress is, why we have it and what we can do about it, in a fun and light-hearted manner that will give you some much needed strategies for coping in the classroom, the staffroom – and beyond!

‘I’m not stressed, I always look like this!’ is a great way to begin a conference or special event or as an interactive workshop, leaving you feeling energised, empowered, enthused, entertained…and 'enspired' to tackle the task of teaching... and living, with renewed enthusiasm.

Guaranteed to leave you totally unstressed and ready to tackle anything!!

Contact us if you would like more information

The benefits of Music Education

The benefits of Music Education - an article by Laura Lewis Brown

Whether your child is the next Beyonce or more likely to sing her solos in the shower, she is bound to benefit from some form of music education. Research shows that learning the do-re-mis can help children excel in ways beyond the basic ABCs.

More Than Just Music

Research has found that learning music facilitates learning other subjects and enhances skills that children inevitably use in other areas.

To read more click here

What's coming up?

Music Count Us In

October 31st is the day in Australia that over 600,000 students will sing 'Keep On' to send a powerful message that music is important in our schools. Why not join in? It can be as simple as singing the song, or as complex and exciting as you want to make it - with loads of arrangements and support materials available as soon as you register.


Toward the end of October we are heading to Singapore as Susie will be presenting a course for the Singapore Teachers' Academy of the Arts (STAR) whilst Phil will be presenting workshops for Pat's Schoolhouse. Then 2 days at home before heading off to the USA and Canada where we will be presenting at the OMEA (Ontario Music Educators Association) Conference in Niagara (someone has to do it!) and the AOSA (American Orff Society Association) annual conference in Denver, Colorado.

In January 2014 Susie will be attending the ANCOS (Australian National Council of Orff Schulwerk) mini conference in Melbourne featuring James Harding from the USA and Peta Harper from NSW. Click here for further info and/or to register. After that Susie is heading up to our nation's capital (that's Canberra for the uninitiated). Susie, together with two wonderful Orff practitioners Sarah Brooke and Sue Lane, will be presenting levels 1 and 2 in Canberra from Jan 20th to 24th. Click here for more info and/or to register.

We look forward to seeing some of you at one or more of these exciting events over the next few months.

What's been happening?

Nie Hou - Well that's what Susie said when she returned from presenting Orff level courses in Shenzen, China with good friend and associate Sarah Brooke in August. They have been going now for several years and this has become somewhat of a fixture in the calendar as the Chinese teachers are lapping it up. Click here to see some pics taken during the courses.

Around that we have been workshopping our new album 'Beat Street' around the streets of Oz - since May we have been to Adelaide, Brisbane, Sydney and Perth and of course in and around Melbourne, so there are now hundreds of happy teachers and their students having fun with the new album. Click here to see some of the fun pics taken at these various workshops.

We also did a special workshop for the Queensland Orff Association (QOSA) while we were in Brisbane, which was a lot of fun. Click here to see some pics.

We didn't forget country Victoria either as we did a mini tour of the north and western areas - a kid's show in Wedderburn, special guests at a choral festival at the Hamilton and Alexandra College, then a Welcome to Music PLAYShop and finally Phil's funny music show in Portland. A good time had by all!

Then of course there was ECCPA - The Early Childhood Conference of Performing Arts in mid August in Melbourne, (while Susie was in China, so Phil had a ball presenting without her!)

Plus a few Artists in School programs and music shows as well as our regular term of Preschool Music classes for Surrey Hills Preschool, which is always very rewarding and loads of fun!

Phil turned 60 in September (can you believe it?) and had the honour of having 4 year olds sing 'Happy Birthday' at the start of his birthday week at a 'Funny Phil's Music show' and then 90 year olds singing it to him at the end of the week in an aged care facility where he and Susie regularly perform! (Plus of course the obligatory 'Rock and Roll' party with Phil, Susie and a host of talented music friends singing and playing all night long!)

Hearts in Harmony Community Music

Wow - we had a fabulous community music event 'SingDancePlay' at Methodist Ladies College in Kew, Melbourne on Oct 6. There was a mix of young and the not so young and people from many different backgrounds as well as a massed choir of over 200 children and adults. Here is a snpashot of what happened on the day....

The workshops - Workshops included ‘Music for Mini’s’ with Heather Monro from Kids Music Company, ‘Folk Dancing from around the world’ with Audrey Fine, ‘Sing your heart out’ with Susie and Phil, ‘Marimbas and wacky instruments’ with Jon Madin and ‘Singing’ with our very special guest Richard Gill OAM.

‘Time to Sing’ Concert - Performances included various school and community music groups, GTR-Good Times Roll Band and featured the ‘Hearts in Harmony’ massed and intergenerational choir, including over 200 choristers made up of local schools, community groups, individuals and families conducted by special guest Richard Gill.

A HUGE thank you to all who helped make this the fantastic day it was and stay tuned for more special events in 2014.

".......the idea of embracing the community in the ways in which you and Phil do is wonderful.There was such a good feeling in the room on the day, especially as all the music was vocally driven. I had a great time. Thank you. Well done to you both." Richard Gill

"Hearts in Harmony is an extremely rare opportunity to work with some of Australia's finest musicians. The event is about as engaging and musically exciting as it gets!" James Macaulay, Choir leader, Mount Waverley Primary School

"Thanks to Susie and the whole team for an excellent day of music-making! My students and parents LOVED it!! (And I really enjoyed myself too!) My highlights were seeing parents on the Echo cellos, playing with over 30 people on Jon Madin's wacky instruments and singing with Richard Gill, not to mention the massed choir where we got to sing with a live band! It was really fun." Natalie Wickham, Choir leader, Mitcham Primary School

To find out more and to see the different programs we offer click here to go to the 'Hearts in Harmony' website and click here to go to our Facebook page (where you can view some pics taken on the day) Oh and remember to 'like' us!

*We are always on the look out for volunteers to help at events as well as people to join our committee. Please contact Janie on 1300 769 803 or janie@welcometomusic.net if you would like to know more.

Looking ahead?

If you're looking ahead for 2014 we would love to be involved in your planning and programs so please keep us in mind when planning your events for the future. We can offer a range of great services including:

  • Professional development 'PLAYshops'
  • Preschool classes
  • Music shows for preschool and primary
  • Family concerts
  • Choral days and Community Drum circles - for students, families and teachers
  • Artists in School programs - from one day to a whole term
  • 'MusiKeynote' presentations for PD Days, seminars and conferences on a variety of topics including the popular 'I'm not stressed - I always look like this!' - great for openings and closings
  • Composition of school songs .....
  • And more .... Our calendar fills quickly so please contact us for further information.

What people are saying

“I have been meaning to write to you about Beat Street which you gave me at ECCPA. Congratulations on another great CD. Yours and Susie's voices sound fantastic, as always. Bruce's youngest daughter loved the Aussie Rules track and listened carefully to make sure you mentioned all the teams! I think Edna the Elephant is my favourite song.“

Jennifer Smith – Director, Mini Maestros

"Dear Susie and Phil,Just wanted to say how much I’m loving using ‘Beat Street’ with my kids. So many great songs to use both in my class and with the choir. Lots of scope to take each song in different directions too.

Love your work"

Hilary Fairlie, Kingsville PS

“It was great fun to sing and dance with you at the House Singing Festival, and to learn about principles of improvisation together with our VCE Music students. The PD on Saturday was equally enjoyable, and very valuable. We all came away with new and inspiring repertoire to teach our youngest student musicians.”

Anne Kristin, Music teacher, The Hamilton and Alexandra College, Vic

“We had a great time...the children have been talking about your visit, and today built a large pirate ship so that we could sing the ‘Pat the Pirate’ song outside. Thanks for all the time and effort that you put into making this event happen for us. We loved it.”

Sue Jetten, Director, New Hope Baptist Preschool, Melbourne

ISME conference Brazil 2014

Ola - Next year's ISME (International Society of Music Educators) Conference will be held in Brazil in July and it's gonna be 'hot, hot, hot!'!! This fabulous conference is held every 2 years in a different part of the world (the last one was in Thessaloniki, Greece) and is well worth attending - not to mention having an excuse to travel to exotic locations around the world!!!

Even better is to present a workshop(s) - the deadline for submissions is November 1 so get cracking! As Susie is Chair of the Active Music Making Special Interest Group (which includes Orff, Kodaly and Dalcroze) we are looking for people who might like to present a workshop or paper in these areas.

You can check it all out here or you can contact Susie directly at susie@welcometomusic.net. but please do so before November 1.

Come on...be our friend!

We would love it if you could 'like' our Facebook page! That way you can keep up with what's going on in our crazy world in between our quarterly enews. Check it out here.

Phil's PHILosophy

Just to show that you're never too old to not only make beautiful music but also outsell Justin Timberlake... Click here.... and have the tissues ready.

And now let's balance that with something very clever and very funny to make you laugh! Click here and enjoy and finally a quote from one of my favourite Disney characters.....

"Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything." - Plato

What is Musicnotes?

MusicNotes is our eNewsletter for preschool and primary teachers, caregivers, parents, therapists, community members and anyone who loves music and is passionate about music for children and all people - regardless of age or background!

MusicNotes is filled with useful information, music resources updates, workshop and event information, articles on music education and even an Ask Susie question and comments forum.

You can read more about 'Welcome To Music', listen to tracks, shop on line and more on our website: www.welcometomusic.net.

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Susie and Phil's 'Welcome to Music' - Susie Davies-Splitter and Phil Splitter
PO Box 268 East Bentleigh Victoria, 3165, Australia. Ph: 1300 769 803 Fax: 1300 769 805

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