Posted by: Steve Scherer | March 4, 2010

My first note to the Geneseo Band students

This trip will present many firsts for me.  It will be my first time traveling out of the country (I don’t think those two trips into Canada for fishing really count).  It will be my first time in any country where I don’t speak the language (It’s all about eating.  How am I going to know what to order?).  But of great significance to me, this will be the first time in 23 years that I have left my band program during the school year.  I am very grateful to Abby Rhodes for constructing this blogging site.  It’s going to allow friends and family to stay in contact over the 10 days of this adventure.  And if the GHS Honors Band students are willing to “think outside the box”, this site will also be a way for them to learn something about the musical culture in Brazil.  I expect that some of you are already beginning to smell a project coming on, and you’re right!  You have impressed me with your critical intellect in every writing assignment I’ve given this year.  So don’t worry, I’m not going to create a lot of work for you.  But it would be a terrible loss if my learning experience in Brazil was not also a learning experience in the music education of my students.

Take the time to become familiar with this site.  Each of you will be expected to visit this site daily, track our location, read posts, view photos, and watch videos of our musical adventures with the Brazilian people.  While in Salvador, Bahia, and Rio de Janero, the WIU Wind Ensemble, with me as their oldest member, will give 4 concerts, attend 1 Brazilian concert, meet with Brazilian music students at the Federal University of Bahia, give a marching band clinic at the Federal University of Rio, visit the Samba School and receive a clinic on Brazilian drumming, complete a joint recording session with a Brazilian Brass Band, and give a joint concert performance with the band at the Federal University of Rio.  One of my favorite missions of this trip will be the donation of nearly 200 musical instruments to a Brazilian school for under-privileged children.

There will be so much information posted by the band members, that you will be exposed to a wealth of current information about what is happening on this music tour.  My hope is that you will find this experience unique and fascinating, and enjoy it during this brief time.  It’s an opportunity I’ve never been able to provide my students, and may never be able to again.  I’ll give more information about what this “assignment” will require next week before we leave.  But for now, in addition to my blog, there will be a few others on the trip to whom you may be able to relate.  Two other Geneseoans on the trip will be my daughter Allison, a junior playing flute in the band, and Cassie Smith, a Sophomore playing clarinet.  There are also at least three former UTHS students in the band, Jake Eastman, Yvonne Dean, and Amber Dean.  Although you may not know them, you may relate to them, since they grew up just a few miles down the road from you.  More later.  Explore and enjoy!



  1. this is cool!

  2. I have not decided on my souvenir request yet, I will get back to you. I hope this is a rich educational experience.

  3. That is a very good point. This trip will be a once in a life time opportunity and it would be good for everyone to learn something from it.

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