Become a Better Recorder Player --
Play in Public!  
Article author Jennifer Carpenter, on right

Getting together to play with fellow recorder enthusiasts is one of the main attractions of playing the recorder. There are tons of ways to perform in your community--the benefits are endless!  If you have members that are wary of public performances, do not worry, find lower stress opportunities to perform. Performing in public will inspire your group to tighten up their playing and will focus the members on perfecting specific pieces. It will also introduce the recorder to other members of your community. Everyone wins! 
  • Look at the churches in your community to see if any of them have a music series. Sometimes, these are reserved for professional groups, but some are more open to amateur ensembles. These series generally fill up quickly and sometimes a year or more in advance, but we recommend you contact the music directors of any church with a series and ask them about participating.
  • Your local school district(s) is also a great wealth of opportunity for both performances and demonstration, especially at the elementary school level. Don't forget to look into private and charter schools as well. Sometimes, they have a little more time and flexibility to bring in a recorder ensemble. You can contact the music teachers directly to ask about these opportunities. Another place to check is your state's music teacher association.
  • Your local library may have a performance venue and some may even host their own music series. Check with your local library to see if they have a space for performances.
  • Local museums are also a good place to check. Some have performance halls, but ensembles sometimes perform for certain exhibits within the museums right in the exhibit hall itself. Bring business cards or contact information; you never know who will hear you and ask for your services!
  • Does your community have a summer "artwalk" event or monthly evening where the galleries stay open late? This is a perfect opportunity to ask galleries if they are interested in live music! A duet/trio is the perfect size for small galleries and you will not overpower those who are coming in to look at art. Don't forget to have flyers out to entice others to the recorder.
  • Community centers often host events and desire musical entertainment. Check with your local community center to see if they have opportunities.
  • Retirement communities love to have local groups come in and perform. Contact your community retirement centers and you will very likely have an upcoming performance opportunity to work toward!
  • Don't forget about private homes! For intimate performances (that often involve wine afterward!), consider hosting a salon performance at the home of a friend or neighbor who can accommodate a few guests to hear your ensemble perform. These are some of my favorite performances because you can engage in both musical and verbal conversation so easily with your guests.
This is by no means an exhaustive list and the ARS would love to hear from you about some of the creative ways you are integrating recorder performances into your community. We would love for you to submit your pictures and a blurb about your performances to . You may be featured on our front page!

Happy playing, and we look forward to hearing about your performing adventur es!

- Jennifer Carpenter, ARS Board Secretary 
Members of the Dallas Recorder Society performing at a Dallas Symphony Youth Concert

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