By Will Johnson
HOUSTON COUNTY – As the summer months approach, many area kids will attend a camp of some type. While the typical athletic, religious, adventure, etc. type of summer camps usually receive the most notice and participation, a type of camp new to the East Texas area will be held at the start of August.
Alyna Bloecher, the Events Manager and Education Director, at the Bloecher Strings Academy, stopped by The Messenger offices earlier this week to discuss the upcoming event, known as the Crockett Violin Camp (CVC).
“Between Aug. 3 and Aug. 5, we are going to be hosting a violin camp. We will be bringing in professors from Bowling Green, Kentucky and they will help (Alyna’s husband) Josh and I. We are also bringing in a pianist from UT- Tyler. We are going to work together and teach classes for those three days,” Bloecher said.
According to the academy’s website, “Bloecher Strings Academy is a music education program located in Crockett, Texas that began in the fall of 2016. Specializing in a variety of musical styles, Bloecher Strings Academy offers private and group instruction on the violin or viola. Courses in music theory and music history are also available. The Academy provides students with excellent leadership from professional violinists and violists as well as multiple performance opportunities within their community through recitals, master classes, workshops, and more.”
The camp is open to those who are just learning to play the violin and for those who are at an advanced level in their musicianship.
“We will also have classes available for educators like violin and viola teachers – or any type of strings teacher for that matter. We will also have classes for strings parents,” Bloecher said.
When asked what the classes for parents with children who play a stringed instrument entailed, Bloecher explained one of the classes would be taught by Dr. Judy Atkinson.
“Dr. Atkinson will talk about being a Suzuki parent. The Suzuki method is something you use a l
ot in violin. It helps answer questions like how do I, as a parent, I sit and listen and what should I do when I get home?” Bloecher said.
According to Bloecher the Suzuki method is based on how children learn how to speak.
“You watch a child as they grow and learn their own language by watching their parents and those around them. In two or three years, they learn to speak very well. Dr. (Shinichi) Suzuki took that same idea and applied it to violin lessons. The whole method is based on the ‘mother-tongue method’ – watch and repeat,” she said.
“Where the parent comes in,” Bloecher continued, “is what is called the ‘Suzuki triangle.’ In the lessons you have the teacher, the student and the parent. When you get home, the triangle changes where you have the p
arent, the student and the teachers. Now, when the student is in a recital, the triangle turns once more and you have the student, the teacher and the parent.”
Bloecher said the camp would begin with a welcome reception where the students would have a chance to meet their teachers and other students.
On the first night of the camp, Bloecher said there would be a faculty recital where the instructors would perform.
In regard to cost, Bloecher said she was really excited about the relatively low cost of three-day camp.
“The entire cost will only be $50. If you are brand new and you would like to participate, but don’t own an instrument, we are renting instruments for an extra $10. Overall, the cost of the camp will be $50 to $60,” she said.
On the last day of the camp (Aug. 5), Bloecher said there will be another recital only this time it will be the students turn to perform.
“At 5 p.m., we will have a participant recital. Everyone who comes to the CVC will participate in the recital. Whatever they learn in the classes during the camp, will be presented by the students,” she said.
The preliminary schedule of the camp events for Aug. 3 shows the check-in and welcome reception will be held from 6 p.m. until 7 p.m. with the faculty recital beginning at 7 p.m.
The Aug. 4 schedule begins at 9 a.m. and runs until noon with workshops, classes and ensembles with a break for lunch between noon and 1 p.m.
Between the hours of 1 p.m. and 2:30, there will be film study and discussion. From 2:30 p.m. until 4:00 p.m., there will be solo rehearsals with the pianist.
The Aug. 5 schedule begins at 9 a.m. and runs until noon with workshops, classes and ensembles with a break for lunch between noon and 1 p.m.
Between the hours of 1 p.m. and 3 p.m., there will be a violin master class and from 3 p.m. until 4 p.m., there will be solo rehearsals with the pianist.
The camp will conclude with the participant recital and reception between 5 and 6 p.m.
To register for the CVC, Bloecher encouraged those who are interested to visit the Bloecher Strings Academy website at www.bloecherstrings.com/summer/camps. The Bloecher Strings Academy may also be reached at 270-627-2636.
The CVC will be held at First Baptist Church of Crockett located at 801 E. Goliad Ave.
Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PHOTOS COURTESY OF BLOECHER STRINGS