2022 Colorado Music Educators Association Conference 2022 Colorado Music Educators Association Conference

Arranging with Your Secondary Ensemble

Broadmoor Hall F

Dylan Fixmer
Greeley Philharmonic Orchestra, Composer in Residence

Composer, educator and musician Dylan Fixmer received degrees in music from the University of Colorado and Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. As a composer, Dylan infuses his work with numerous musical traditions from Rock to Jazz to traditional folk music. His recent works include commissions and premiers from the Greeley Philharmonic Orchestra, Mt. Blanca Fine Arts Association, “Old Machines” Duo, and the University of Northern Colorado faculty. Dylan is currently the Composer in Residence for the Greeley Philharmonic Orchestra and the Mt. Blanca Fine Arts Association. As a multi-faceted and imaginative composer, Dylan writes for multifarious contexts from orchestral to solo and ensemble work, from theater to film and narrative including the soundtrack for the recent release of the audio book “Adventures of a Mystic Warrior” by Robert Rocco D’Ordine. Dylan’s compositions have been featured on KAFM, KVNF, KDNK, Rifle Community Television, and on albums by Sarah Off, The Embodying Rhythm Marimba Ensemble, The Scones, Sarah Louise Pipelow, and Traditionish. As an educator, Dylan served as Associate Instructor of Music and “First Voices” Choir Director at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University. He taught K-8 general music, jazz band, and drama at Hotchkiss K-8 School, K-4 general music at Highland Elementary School, and is a faculty member at the Mt. Blanca Summer Music Conservatory. Dylan has presented at the Colorado Music Educators Association Conference, the Indiana Music Educators Conference, and as a guest speaker at the University of Northern Colorado School of Music.

Understanding the basic elements of art music (melody, harmony, rhythm, dynamics, tempo, texture, etc.) is an essential part of every musician's education.  The ability to manipulate these elements in creative ways can help solidify knowledge of these elements in ways that simply encountering them in repertoire cannot. At the secondary level, directors often lack the time or resources to give their students creative license over materials played in the classroom.  This session offers classroom-tested strategies for arranging and composing with secondary level ensembles that focus on engaging all students in the creative process while teaching and reinforcing the knowledge of musical elements.

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