Following the great success of Look, Listen & Learn, Michiel Oldenkamp and Jaap Kastelein have focused their attention on teaching material that can be used in both instrumental lessons and the class band (wind ensemble). They have devised a completely new method for young wind players and percussionists, aged eight and above. The materials have been developed in close collaboration with professionals from the world of class bands, music schools and conservatories in the Netherlands and Germany.
Learning Music Together is a method for instrumental lessons and class band in one. Instrumental technique is introduced and developed alongside the learning pathway for the class band, where the emphasis is on playing together and general musical content. Combining these two components produces the complete method. The extensive website offers all kinds of supplementary materials such as demo and accompaniment tracks for all pieces, additional playing material, and instructional videos. The logical structure and child-friendly layout ensure that this method will prove to be motivating for students.
The method can be used in many different and varied settings – small or large groups, ensembles, brass or wind bands. In the comprehensive score, there are useful tips and additional exercises to help train the students, improve their aural training, and promote playing together.
The method consists of two volumes. Volume one introduces the basic principles of playing a wind, brass or percussion instrument. Initially the pieces are in unison, but gradually this is extended using games and collective warm-ups. The class band develops gradually and students learn to listen to each other at all times. Duets and two-part playing is also introduced.
Volume two builds on the skills taught in the first volume. Now three parts are introduced. Two parts are printed in the student books: high instruments – voices 1 and 2, low instruments – voices 1 and 3. The conductor can decide how to distribute these parts. There are lots of varied possibilities for students to play games and pieces together.
Volume 2 available 2019.
Learning Music Together on the web
There is a special website for each instrument in the series. These contain all additional materials to support the method, such as demo and play-along tracks (MP3). These can be streamed online or downloaded onto a smartphone, tablet or computer. There are also additional pieces, instructional videos for some instruments, and answers to the quiz questions. Each student book contains a specific username and password to give access to the website.
The complete method consists of
• Student book for each instrument
• Demo and accompaniment tracks for all pieces (.mp3)
• Special additional material for each instrument (.pdf)
• Informative videos
• Sample letters for parents, invitaitons to concerts, etc. (Word, Excel en pdf)
I have been extremely impressed looking through the new instrumental method ‘Learning Music Together’. It is obvious that a great deal of time and thought has been spent on its authorship and it seems to be one of the most comprehensive methods of its type. Every small aspect of wind playing has been considered and the method makes good use of the World Wide Web to bring wind teaching firmly into the 21st century! I congratulate the authors on their attention to detail and also the attractive, inclusive design. I heartily recommend it.Philip Sparke
The new instrumental method ‘Learning Music Together’ is highly recommended for music bands, schools and music schools and will enable them to reach a large number of children and young people. These books will help everyone feel enthusiastic about music. Congratulations to the authors! They have succeeded in making class band teaching fun.Christoph Karle
‘Learning Music Together’ is a basic part of every Yamaha Class Band and this method, ‘Learning Music Together’ does a great job of doing that!Vincent de Leur