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Jennifer Rodriguez

MUSE375: Philosophy Statement

Music education is the guidance and refinement of technical analysis, emotional

expression, and creation through music. It is a multifaceted subject, and due to this it is allinclusive and important for all to experience some form of its subject. Music encompasses an
internal part of human life, as well as overlaps with many other disciplines, such as history,
literature, math, and science. It is grounded in our past, building a history of its own, adjusting
throughout time, and even adapting to fit current societal habits. With this knowledge in mind, I
believe music is a subject in which the understanding of its content begins with the individual,
expands to a community and extrinsic form of learning, and ultimately molds to form overall
interpretations through communication, multifaceted perspectives, and individual creativity.
In my personal teaching, I believe music in itself begins as an emotional experience, in
which musicians rely on what they are hearing and feeling to form a grasp on content. Having
this first bare experience is essential to unlocking each individuals personal connection to
individual works, timbres, harmonies, and other musical elements. This emotional experience
must then be strengthened through branching elements of music, whether it is through musical
concepts, historical background, harmonic structure, or traits of the composer himself. Humans
innately sense emotions through observation and the use of all of their senses, which can
ultimately lead to grasping the content of a piece even without words at first. Following, music
becomes communicative, through interaction with others and outside sources. This is when
music expands beyond the bounds of one mind and meets with the factual characteristics of how
pieces came to be. Through these discussions though, connections and community begin to form
through the shared opinions of what others believed they feel through certain pieces of music.

Jennifer Rodriguez
MUSE375: Philosophy Statement

My general belief of the study and interpretation of music therefore, involves a compilation of
intrinsic verses extrinsic studying; students must look into themselves as well as into the factual
qualities of a pieces history and context to create a true work of art as a community.
I have come to believe that part of my philosophy of teaching is to emphasize music in
these different lights to connect to each student. Because music begins as an intrinsic experience,
I believe music is for everyone and it is up to the teacher to facilitate the different connections
students can personally make to their creation and interpretation of music. Through first
analyzing raw emotion within pieces studied, and then branching out into the details of
musicality and background, students are strengthening their connection to their own selfanalysis, as well as the cooperation that it takes to make a piece breathe as one idea throughout
an ensemble. It is very clear when entering any band setting that participating students come
from many different backgrounds, lifestyles, friendship groups, and beliefs. By taking these
vastly different personalities and utilizing them to create an overall vision of a piece, a classroom
transforms into a community of individuals with important opinions and personal growth. Due
to this understanding, my philosophy of teaching involves exploring many facets of learning to
better connect to ones own personality, as well as the overall output and relationship of an
ensemble as a whole.