During the cold month of January,
some members of the East Orange Unified Marching Band spend
indoor hours learning how to arrange music... on a computer. They
are using a computer software program called "Finale"
which allows them to create, play, record and finally publish in
print separate parts for each band member to read and play on
Desmond Drake takes possession
of a sound system donated by The
Magic Nook to make the music sound more
like a real live band. He hooks up the speakers to the computer
and tests it out. Desmond is a multi-talented artist, having created the design for last year's Band shirts, and is now working on creating original arrangements
for his Band to play on the field next Spring.
L-R: Adam Engers - Mellophone player;
Joshua Reserve - Sousaphone player
Once the system is set up, the crew quickly
begins learning Finale, the music editing software used
to score and arrange marching band music. Our computer can only
accomodate a small number of students at a time so only those
students with a real thirst for learning to read and write music
are the first to take advantage of it.
Adam Engers is so eager to
work on this, he has given up his lunch break to create music.
The first order of business is learning how to input music. They
start with a piece they already know just for the practice, and
then will begin to improvise new arrangements of it.
The next generation of band members will be
learning how to score and arrange music, taught by this current
generation of band members who are breaking new ground. In the
future, colleges will expect some knowledge and experience with
this new form of software assisted music, and our college-bound
students will be ready to show them what they have learned.