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by The Midwest Clinic

The Midwest Clinic Board of Directors is pleased to announce a change to the 2010 conference schedule. Thanks to our new venue’s many performance spaces and meeting rooms, we are able to make a shift that we have hoped for and discussed for many years: the full integration of our string program into the band and jazz events. This year, we will offer orchestra concerts and string clinics throughout the conference, without cutting programming from any area. This will create a stronger sense of fellowship among all instrumental music educators, and will allow us to begin the conference one day later than in the past, on Wednesday. The 2010 Midwest Clinic will run from Wednesday, December 15 through Saturday, December 18, in McCormick Place West (Chicago, Illinois).

The Midwest Clinic Board of Directors has long wanted to integrate its entire program, but it was simply impossible in the previous conference venue, the Hilton Chicago. To provide a strong orchestra program at the Hilton despite its space limitations, the conference began on a Tuesday, with a day designed only for string teachers. This made it difficult for directors to enjoy the energy, insights, and fellowship of all of their colleagues in instrumental music education, which is especially valuable when so many members of our community work with a wide variety of students and ensembles. For example, only 19% of those who described themselves as orchestra directors at the 2009 conference were only involved in string education. The rest have additional responsibilities, including directing band and jazz ensembles. We are very happy that this year, all Midwest attendees can take advantage of the full spectrum of programming – including the magnificent exhibits – without taking more time away from the classroom or incurring extra travel costs.

As John Clinton, a member of The Midwest Clinic Board of Directors who serves on its orchestral activities committee, notes, “The Wednesday through Saturday schedule provides a wonderful opportunity for all who teach orchestra and string ensembles. The added benefit of integrating all of instrumental music education into four days will make The Midwest Clinic a greater learning experience for everyone.

We look forward to welcoming the entire Midwest community to the conference this December, for a week of music, learning, and true fellowship.

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