Minnesota School Of Music - December 2019

Take a look at our newsletter this month!

12. 2019 763-432-9713 www.mnschoolofmusic.com



S ometimes in life, I like to look out for little signs — messages for how life is going or things I should be watching for. A while back when our school was first established, I was definitely on the lookout for an omen one way or another. Believe it or not, I got the message while pumping gas. When my car’s tank was full, the price ticker had stopped dead center on $20.19. “Huh, 2019,” I thought. “What’s going to happen then?” So, this little happenstance has been in the back of my mind all this year. Was it a good sign? A warning? Or just a (relatively) decent price for refueling my car? I didn’t know. That is, I didn’t until very recently. Now, it’s clear 2019 is the year we’ve really hit our stride as a school. At the time of writing, I’ve just gotten word that Minnesota School of Music is now Google’s top-rated music school in the state! This is huge news for us, especially given the many venerable music institutions that share this market with us. But this is more than just a feather in the cap of our young school — it’s an incredibly humbling achievement. Unlike other awards or achievements, topping Google’s charts is something that can only be done by getting stellar reviews from the families we serve.

So, as we close out this banner year, I want to thank our customers for their stellar support and our staff for making MnSOM the best school it could possibly be! Earning a whopping 114 five-star reviews doesn’t just happen. They’re a result of our caring, engaged community, and teachers who are dedicated to making a difference. To our readers out there, thank you so much for the confidence you have placed in us. That you’ve chosen us for your children’s music education is an honor, and that you’ve been so willing to share your thoughts about our school online has been astounding. Your willingness to share your thoughts and experiences is how we’ve been able to learn and grow as a school and why we now hold this prestigious achievement. Without you, we literally wouldn’t be here. And, of course, I have to mention our incredible staff. Review after five- star review makes mention of how one teacher or another has made a difference in a child’s music education, and that says something. We’re fortunate to have some truly hardworking professionals on our team willing to engage with their students and perform their job on the highest level. In an industry filled with private contractors doing “gig work,” I feel so blessed to

have found such dedicated teachers to be on our staff.

Together, these families and team members make up our incredible MnSOM community. I often talk about how the dream of this musical school came to me or the trials and tribulations in making it a reality. But it’s thanks to you, the people who have put your time and trust into this place and made Minnesota School of Music more than I could have ever imagined. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.

And here’s to an amazing 2020!

–Eric Nehring

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MORE THAN JUST ‘YOU’LL SHOOT YOUR EYE OUT!’ LESSONS FAMILIES CAN LEARN FROM ‘A CHRISTMAS STORY’ forever. Belief in certain parts of the Christmas season can fade slowly or die as quickly as the spin of a decoder pin, but parents can always be there to remind children about what’s really important during the Christmas season.

In 1983, one movie introduced Red Ryder BB guns, fishnet-clad leg lamps, and bright red bars of soap into America’s everlasting Christmas mythos. Now, over 35 years later, “A Christmas Story” continues to delight audiences every holiday season with timeless lessons for viewers of all ages. In a story where kids are clever and kind, and parents are bumbling and wise, “A Christmas Story” has more lessons to offer families than just, “You’ll shoot your eye out!” YOUR KIDS ARE LISTENING TO YOU (OH, FUDGE!). They aren’t always obedient, but that doesn’t mean they’re not listening. After Ralphie lets slip the “queen mother of dirty words” in front of his father, the narrator reminisces about first hearing that word from his old man — possibly when he was trying to get their furnace to work. He doesn’t admit this to his mother, but it’s a lesson for parents everywhere that kids may hear more than they let on. KIDS WON’T BELIEVE IN MAGIC FOREVER. Magical stories about Santa or even “Little Orphan Annie’s” Secret Society fill children’s hearts with wonder but won’t enchant them

SOMETIMES ‘DISASTERS’ LEAD TO NEW ADVENTURES. Christmas Day can be hectic, and, in the hubbub of it all, sometimes disaster can feel inevitable. Ralphie’s parents certainly experience their fair share of disaster in hilarious fashion when the Bumpus Hounds destroy their holiday turkey and leave nothing but the heavenly aroma. But, when Ralphie’s father takes them out to eat at a local Chinese restaurant, it creates a whole new Christmas tradition for the Parker family. Our holiday mishaps, no matter how tragic, are rarely the end of the world.

Consider one final tip: Do not stick your tongue to any flagpoles this winter! Happy holidays!


PERFECT PRACTICE These smaller mini recitals are also ideal for students who have already performed at larger events and plan to attend more in the future. Having a weekly outlet available for experienced musicians to practice live performances is the perfect way to prepare for being in the spotlight! So, whether you have a seasoned performer in your household or a budding musician looking to show off their skills for the first time, sign up for these recitals! Again, only eight slots will be available per week due to the size of our classrooms. You can secure your student’s place early by putting their name down at our front desk!

Over the past few months, something special has been happening during our Friday makeup classes. Parents have been asking to sit in and listen! Now, we always allow you to be there for your child, no matter what day of the week it is. But what made this experience unique is that these Friday sessions are group classes, which meant lessons started becoming like unofficial recitals. So, we’ve decided, “Why not take it to the next level?” ANNOUNCING FRIDAY NIGHT MINI RECITALS

A SMALL BUT IMPORTANT STAGE While we’ve always offered large red carpet events like our Sundon Hall performance series, we recognize that performing in front of hundreds of people isn’t for every student. With the opportunity to perform in a smaller, less formal environment, young musicians can learn to overcome stage fright and let their talents shine. Whether your child wants to perform on the big stage one day or simply wants to build their confidence, this is the right place to start.

Starting this January, we’re going to be holding weekly shows right here at our school! Every Friday at 7 p.m., eight students will have a chance to entertain a small, supportive audience. These sessions are open to anyone — not just those in need of a makeup lesson — so be sure to sign up early at the front desk to secure your student’s spot! We’re excited for the valuable skills these unique shows can teach!

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Sometimes, a student’s passion for music can begin to wane. This is a normal part of any creative or athletic pursuit, but it’s one young musicians can find extremely difficult to overcome. In fact, Eric addressed this issue directly in Chapter 20 of his book “More Than Music” because it’s something we see in the industry very often. Thankfully, we’ve found three steps parents can take to keep their music student from throwing in the towel too early. USE THE MUSICAL LADDER At MnSOM, we use the Musical Ladder system to measure and reward our students’ progress. This cycle of tests and rewards is about more than just designating where your child is in their music education; it’s about getting them excited for where they’re going next. By providing those three-month milestones, the Musical Ladder gives kids a concrete goal to reach toward. Make hitting those goals a special occasion in your family! Having their hard work and dedication celebrated can do wonders to keep music engaging and fun for your student! GO TO RECITALS Where student athletes have game day, music students have recitals. Having your child perform in one of these events is not just a great chance to show friends and family how much they’ve learned; it’s a chance for them to bring all the skills they’ve acquired together into a single performance. Not attending recitals is akin to going to baseball practice every week but never actually playing the game — these events excite and motivate students to continuously improve! If playing in front of crowds makes your child nervous, that’s no problem! Check out our Page- 2 article on mini recitals! STAY INVESTED One of the best ways to keep your child interested in music is to stay interested yourself. That doesn’t mean being a musician or sitting in on 100% of their lessons, but it does mean at least checking in with their teacher, listening to them practice from time to time, and talking to them about the pieces they are working on. That support can make a world of difference in helping a child stay passionate about music. KEEP THE MUSIC FROM FADING WAYS TO KEEP YOUR CHILD ENGAGED AND PRACTICING


Samantha S. Steve V. Colten S. Joe S. Talia B. Angela A. Josey M. Roy J. Evan M. OCTOBER

Arunaa M. Chloe W. Harold F.

Farris T. Leila B. Charlie F. Lucie F. Josephine H. Chryssa M.

IS YOUR TEACHER If you’ve tried to make a schedule change recently, you’ve seen firsthand how full our teachers’ schedules are. If you are looking to make an upcoming schedule change, please read below to see if your teacher is sold out. Note: Teacher availability is subject to change based on enrollment. Please contact the front desk at 763-432-9713 for up-to-date schedule information. SOLD OUT?

Mrs. Bunish - SOLD OUT Mrs. Lehner - SOLD OUT Mr. Membrez - SOLD OUT Mr. Nehring - SOLD OUT

Mr. Nistler - SOLD OUT Mr. Norell - SOLD OUT Miss Pliam - SOLD OUT Miss Schwefel - SOLD OUT

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3533 88th Ave. NE, Blaine, MN 55014 763-432-9713 www.mnschoolofmusic.com



A Stellar Year for MnSOM

Lessons Families Can Learn From ‘A Christmas Story’ Take the Stage With Mini Recitals!

Welcome New Students Maintain the Fun in Music

Yurts: Glamping at Its Finest



The allure of the great outdoors calls to many, but pitching a tent and cooking over a fire isn’t for everyone. If that describes you, consider the yurt: a small, permanent

Nestled in the San Juan Mountains about 10 miles north of New Mexico, this yurt is a snow-lover’s paradise. Skiing, snowshoeing, and hiking trails are plentiful in this backcountry location. At the end of a chilly day, come home to comfy beds, cooking supplies, and decor made to feel like you’re camping — but with sturdy walls to keep out the cold. FALLS BROOK YURTS, NEW YORK For the glampers who truly want to get away, hike just under 1 mile into the woods of the Adirondack Mountains to discover rustic yurts beckoning you to cook over a fire or bundle up with a book. At night, the yurt’s domed skylight offers excellent stargazing. For those keen on winter activities, skiing and snowshoeing trails start right outside the front door. In the summer, enjoy hiking, fishing, and swimming.

structure often outfitted with electricity, plumbing, and other modern amenities. Expertly nestled in remote locations, they provide comforts of home in the midst of nature. Here are just a few around the United States available for rent. TREEBONES RESORT, CALIFORNIA For those new to the glamping scene, this is a great choice for an easy transition. With picturesque views of the Pacific Ocean, the Treebones Resort in Big Sur has an array of spaciously comfortable yurts to choose from. The resort has heated pools, a cozy lodge, and even a sushi bar. About an hour up the coastline, you can find a few shops, restaurants, and art galleries if you decide you’ve gotten your dose of nature for the day.

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