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Many students in JJHS’ Performing Arts Department are drawn more to the sound room and music studio than to the stage. They are in the General Music and Music Technology track, taught by Amy Geiger. "The 'non performance' based aspect of the Department serves the needs of many kids,” said Steven Morse, Choral and Orchestral Studies teacher at JJHS.
Music Technology is a three-year sequence, following the prerequisite Music History and Theory class. Students learn composition techniques through a variety of genres including Sonata Form, Electronic Music, Film Scoring, Commercial Jingles, Pop Form, and the art of Remixing.
“Music Tech students are very passionate about music; whether it is writing music or listing and analyzing music,” said Amy Geiger. “My students have committed two, three, and even four years and countless hours to the program throughout their high school career.”
Neil LaPolla enjoys writing music; his goal is to write a new song each week. He began collaborating with Nick Spink in Music Technology this past fall, and they have just released their second composition, "Curiosity." Jack Bandon, a drummer since elementary school, is new to writing full compositions. He worked on reimagining a classic Annette Henshaw song, "I've Got a Feeling I'm Falling." Sophie Lee has studied piano and violin for most of her life, and created a composition called "Strawberry Snowcone."
Students share compositions through QR codes--two-dimensional barcodes--hanging on bulletin boards in the high school hallway. Scan the QR code with your phone and listen!
(Shown here: "Curiosity," by Neal LaPolla and Nick Spink. You can also listen here.)