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2024 Snacks & Sound Series: Open Rehearsals Bring Community & Fun

Every spring, Education Through Music-Los Angeles (ETM-LA) hosts the Snacks & Sound Series – a season of open rehearsals and ensemble presentations across our partner schools. The community series includes: Bagels with the Band, Cookies with the Choir, Oranges with Orff, Snack Attack with Modern Band, and Sweets with Strings. These events mark a significant milestone for ETM-LA’s first-year ensemble students as they perform for the first time, showcasing their musical learning in front of a live audience.


During performances, ensemble directors (ETM-LA Music Teachers) seize the opportunity to connect with parents and guardians, building advocacy and providing guidance on how to support their child’s musical journey. ETM-LA Music Teacher Terri Walsh emphasizes the events’ impact on connecting families with their children’s education: “I feel that if families know what their children are learning in choir, it helps connect them and they can really see how much focus, effort, and fun goes into the choir rehearsal and program.” 

ETM-LA Music Teacher Kimberly Johnson reflects on the impact of these events on students: “They like that band is separate from their regular music class. It’s as if they are in their own little club.” For families, these events provide a window into their child’s musical growth and development, fostering a deeper appreciation for the importance of music education in their child’s life. Music Teacher Mentor Lucy Cahuantzi shares, “Parents always show gratitude for our work and become more inclined to push their students to practice at home.”

New to this school year, ETM-LA’s Orff Ensembles will join in on the Snacks & Sound fun! ETM-LA Music Teacher Ari Kessler highlights the anticipation of his ensemble’s debut: “This is the first time we’re trying something like this! Of course it’s important to make a strong first impression for the community that supports the program. In addition, an Orff ensemble rehearses differently from bands or orchestras… I hope this event will give attendees insight into how our group works.” The upcoming Oranges with Orff will feature a time for students to “bring community members into the ensemble by teaching them one of the instrumental pieces” engaging them in the Orff experience.

The Snacks & Sound Series represents a rite of passage for our ETM-LA ensemble students. Mrs. Johnson notes how the upper-class students “volunteered to help with Bagels with the Band for the beginning students. I never even mentioned it to my upper-level students, but they popped up ready to help because it’s their program.” Being part of an ensemble provides students with a sense of community and ownership.

Mrs. Walsh shares, “Several parents expressed their appreciation with kind words; it was evident that a bond was happening during this special time.” Parents/guardians demonstrated gratitude for the chance to be part of their child’s musical experience and walk away with a deeper appreciation for music education. Through these events, ETM-LA furthers its mission of providing high-quality music education while nurturing the next generation and fostering a lifelong love of music.



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Education Through Music-Los Angeles is an independent 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to provide and promote music in under-resourced schools as part of the core curriculum for every child in order to enhance students’ academic achievement, creativity, and overall development.
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