Instrumental Music

Instrumental music faculty Shauna Smith continues the strong musical legacy at FVS. Students in the Symphony Orchestra and the Select Chamber Ensembles participate annually in three formal concerts (fall, winter and spring) as well as at off-campus performances in the local Colorado Springs-Denver Areas. Members of the Symphony Orchestra also play at pep rallies and athletic events. The Advanced Music Theory and Composition class prepares students for college-level music theory while allowing them to use the recording studio and compose music.

INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC COURSES

List of 9 items.

  • Symphony Orchestra

    Prerequisites: At least three years private instruction, previous band and/or orchestral experience or approval from instructor.

    The Chamber Orchestra and Concert Band will combine to form the exciting Fountain Valley Symphony Orchestra. The merger lends greater potential to a diversified repertoire and a wider variety of possible sounds and colors. The musicians will have a full symphonic experience which is very rare in a high school setting. In order to ensure the ultimate success of the student enrolled in the Symphony Orchestra, professional coaches from the Colorado Springs Philharmonic and other local professional groups will be invited on a regular basis to coach and guide the students. This unique opportunity to work with professional musicians will help students become more confident in their playing abilities and create a group capable of performing at a very high level. If the musician should choose to pursue music in a collegiate setting, the Fountain Valley Symphonic Orchestra experience will help pave the way. Students will also learn how orchestral values such as punctuality, preparation, and quality participation not only contribute to the success of their symphony but will help carry them triumphantly through college and beyond.
  • Select Chamber Ensembles

    Audition required. Students may audition as a preformed group. Select Chamber Ensemble students must also be members of the Fountain Valley Symphony or Concert Choir (at the director’s discretion).

    The Select Chamber Ensembles are comprised of the elite musicians of Fountain Valley School. Highly qualified students must audition and be accepted to participate in the Select Chamber Ensembles. All exceptional wind, brass, percussion (including piano), and string players are encouraged to audition. Auditions will take place before the start of the next school year or semester. Once accepted, small ensembles such as a horn trio, a brass quartet with percussion, a string trio with oboe or saxophone, and a piano trio are all exciting possible combinations. Depending on the number of qualified applicants, two to three select ensembles will be assigned (unless performed) for the duration of the semester. Music for the ensembles will range from classical to contemporary to classical jazz. Professional musicians from the Colorado Springs Philharmonic and other professional groups will be invited to coach and teach the art of ensemble playing. The ensembles will prepare music to a very high level in order to perform throughout the community. Concert attendance will be an important and life-changing part of the learning experience. Audition requirements are posted online.
  • Advanced Theory and Composition

    Advanced Music Theory builds on theory content and performance skills  introduced and developed in Composition-Arranging class. As with AP Music Theory, "the goal of this course is to develop a student’s ability to recognize, understand and describe the basic materials and processes of music that is heard or presented in a score".   Students in Advanced Music Theory read, notate, perform and compose music from varying genres and historical periods. In addition, students further aural skills already learned in Composition-Arranging through listening exercises, sight-singing examples, written exercises, and  analysis. Arranging and orchestration techniques are taught and developed through individual and group projects. Performances for the school community are required.
     
  • Chamber Strings

    The focus of this half-major course is the enjoyment of chamber music for stringed instruments, specifically violin, viola, cello and bass ensemble music, with an emphasis on intonation, bowing techniques and ensemble playing. Improving the skill level for the individual player as well as the group is emphasized. The FVS Chamber Orchestra is open to all students with a minimum of one year of study or by audition. Students who own their instruments are asked to provide them for this class; the School may provide some instruments, or students may rent from local music stores. Public performance is required. Prerequisite: Two-year minimum playing experience in a school orchestra or one year of private lesson
  • Wind Ensemble/Concert Band

    Open to student-musicians in grades 9th-12th, this course develops instrument-specific skills as well as aural, theory and critique skills through performance opportunities and historical studies. Music selected for study and/or performance by the Wind Ensemble primarily stems from the Western classical, musical theater and film repertoire; however, music from non-Western cultures from Asia, Africa and Latin America is also a critical component of the course. Wind Ensemble is open to all woodwind, brass, upright-bass, keyboard/piano*, harp and percussion players. Prerequisite: Two-year minimum playing experience in a school orchestra or one year of private lesson. *Limited spots available for piano/keyboard.
  • Musicianship I

    “Musicianship” is about training to be a well-rounded musician: a performer, an artist, and a scholar.  In Musicianship I, students practice their individual craft music via a self-defined plan within a supportive academic environment.  This course combines 1-1 with the teacher, individual practice time for students, performance opportunities (solo and group) and group work in theory and history.  Students articulate and follow a self-driven practice routine demonstrating discipline characteristic of a professional performer, maintain journals, create recordings of their practices.  The class is open to vocal and instrumental musicians of any skill and interest.   
    Performance Requirements: 2xSolo and 1x in Group, per term
    Theory Covered:  Introduction to Songwriting 
  • Musicianship II

    “Musicianship” is about training to be a well-rounded musician: a performer, an artist, and a scholar.  In Musicianship I, students practice their individual craft music via a self-defined plan within a supportive academic environment.  This course combines 1-1 with the teacher, individual practice time for students, performance opportunities (solo and group) and group work in theory and history.  Students articulate and follow a self-driven practice routine demonstrating discipline characteristic of a professional performer, maintain journals, create recordings of their practices.  The class is open to vocal and instrumental musicians of any skill and interest.   
    Performance Requirements: 2xSolo and 1x in Group, per term
    Theory Covered:  Introduction to Songwriting 
  • Musicianship III & Honors

    “Musicianship” is about training to be a well-rounded musician: a performer, an artist, and a scholar.  In Musicianship III, students practice continue their individual craft music via a self-defined plan within a supportive academic environment.  This course combines 1-1 with the teacher, individual practice time for students, performance opportunities (solo and group) and group work in theory and history.  Students articulate and follow a self-driven practice routine demonstrating discipline characteristic of a professional performer, maintain journals, create recordings of their practices.  The class is open to vocal and instrumental musicians of any skill and interest.   
    Performance Requirements: 2xSolo and 2x in Group, per term
    Theory Covered:  Introduction to Arranging (III) and Recording Studio (III Honors)
  • Music: Composing and Arranging

    This course is for students interested in learning about and developing varied skills and techniques in the art of music composition and arranging within varied classical, film and pop settings. The course is open to all students regardless of prior music background or experience. Lessons and workshops will focus either on the fundamental properties of instrument groups or skills and techniques in theory, composition and arranging. Knowledge gained and skills developed will be applied to individual and group projects that will be presented to varied constituents in the FVS community including peers, classmates, parents and faculty/admin. By the end of the course, students will be able to: Orchestrate and compose music for various settings and genres (pop, jazz, musical theater, film and classical); Arrange or compose music for small and large string and wind sections with and without rhythm section (keyboard, bass, guitar, drums); Analyze songs and scores with an understanding of basic theory-based knowledge (i.e. key placement and modulation) and typical song structures (ABA form, etc); Understand common orchestration techniques used in songs, jingles and films; and, demonstrate effective use of vocabulary for an effective critique process.

Faculty

List of 1 members.

  • Photo of Shauna Smith

    Shauna Smith 

    Fine Arts Faculty - Music Educator
    (719) 391-5367
    Queens College Aaron Copland School of Music - M.A.
    College of Idaho - B.A.
    Read Bio
6155 Fountain Valley School Road, Colorado Springs, CO 80911