Outside the Classroom: Future of Music w/ Mr. Thomas
What do you hope your students will take away from the music program at BASIS?
I hope that my students will take away a lifelong appreciation for music and all art forms. I would love for them to discover a certain sense of self and purpose as they go out into the world. I found music to do that for me and how I identify and how I navigate through the world. Hopefully, they will continue to immerse themself in art and not just appreciate art for what it does for them, but what it does for communities.
What are some future plans for the music program?
For one, I'd love for us to do more public performances in school and outside the school setting. Maybe we could find venues close by where we could go out and put on actual performances for the community that we are in. I want us to start doing more collaborative work with our sister school in Brooklyn and put on joint concerts. I'd love for us to be able to travel and have further musical experiences that would allow us to take master classes with world-renowned musicians to play clinics with those who are professionals to just hear more music that we are unfamiliar with.
Do you plan to participate in competitions?
I would love for us to participate in competitions. There are a number of them that happen in and around New York City. Most music programs are involved in NYSSMA that allows us to meet different bands from all different regions of the state and country and enroll in different categories of style and difficulty of playing. This would allow us to see how far we can push ourselves to be the best band we can be.
What is some equipment that you are excited to use at the new campus?
Definitely the drumset. We have been doing drumset studies both in the 6th grade music class and the 10th grade music elective. I can't wait to get another round of auxiliary percussion from different world cultures and continue to build our rhythmic skills and competency. I'm also excited to teach base as we got a brand new base amp with a lot of different effects. I can't wait to get students involved in making more modern music that they are comfortable with.