Congratulations to all my students who played at our recent recital. To celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday many projects this season have had a Canadian flavour. The last recital of this year was nearly all-Canadian content!

At the fall group class we looked at the history of our own national anthem and students learned it in a variety of score types and levels. Throughout the year students’ new repertoire choices have often been by Canadian composers. Our RCM books contain many Canadian choices. And new to my lending library this year was a set of books called Northern Lights.

Northern Lights is growing series of graded piano music by Canadian composers from the Canadian National Conservatory of Music. CNCM is another fine music curriculum and examination system that spans our great country. The Northern Lights series currently contains two collections: a repertoire and a musical discoveries book, ranging from Pre-Reader through to Level Eight, as well as volumes of duet books at various levels. The musical discovery series that I own proved to be great fun as part of the studio 30-piece challenge.

In addition to being 100% Canadian, I really like CNCM’s musicianship skills that are part of their examination system. I use many of these skills – ear training, transposition, harmonization, and improvisation – to round out my students’ musical skills.

We are so very lucky to have so many Canadian composers coast to coast writing good music for students.