• Aaron

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    James Milford, Head of School, announced today the development of an Orchestra Program for Maclay School.  The program will be offered during school hours and will be led by Aaron Seiler, a professional violinist, pianist, and longtime private instructor in Tallahassee.  Milford has a long-range plan for the Performing Arts at Maclay and the creation of this program is one step in the direction of these goals. 

    Mr. Seiler will lead the following Orchestra courses with the goal of creating a comprehensive school-wide orchestra program in the coming years.  In the Lower School, offerings will include Lower School beginning strings and Lower School intermediate strings.  In the Middle School, Middle School beginning strings and Middle School intermediate strings will be offered.  Upper School orchestra will be available depending on student interest and demand.   

    “With the addition of these courses, we are excited that students in our school community with an interest in learning a string instrument, or those already playing, will have the opportunity to further their knowledge and have a rewarding and educational experience playing with a group,” said Milford.  “The arts at Maclay are an essential part of a well-rounded liberal arts education and we are delighted to be able to offer this new program to Maclay students.”  Milford continued, “We know that we have a group of students in our school community already excelling in their study of string instruments and we are excited to highlight their talent and work on campus, while providing them an opportunity to further their knowledge.”   

    The orchestra program is designed to have a place for students at any stage in their musical education to play.  In both the Lower and Middle School Divisions, students who have never tried a string instrument will have the opportunity to join the beginning group.   

    “The tremendous benefits of rehearsing and performing orchestral music, from classical to modern, are part and parcel to an excellent education.  This will be an exciting year of orchestra concerts, ensemble showcases, and growth.  I cannot wait to share my passion for music with the exceptional students at Maclay!” said Mr. Seiler.   

    Mr. Seiler holds a Masters of Music Performance and a Bachelors of Arts in Music both from Florida State University.  He also holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Oberlin College.  He also previously developed strings program in Brevard County, serving as a string consultant for the Brevard County School System, a program which started his own musical career.  As a professional musician, he plays with the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra, Pensacola Symphony Orchestra, Choral Society of Pensacola (as the concertmaster), and the Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra.  He has been providing private music instruction to an average of 80 students annual in Tallahassee since 2002.   

    Frequently Asked Questions:   

    When will the classes be offered? 

    Orchestral Classes will be during the school day.   

    Lower School: 

    Two days a week, Lower School students will have the opportunity to spend a portion of their lunch and activity time to attend either a beginners or intermediate class.  Each level of the class will meet twice per week. 

    Middle School: 

    A beginner and intermediate class will also be offered in the rotating block schedule of the Middle School.  Each class will be offered every other day within the rotation of the new block schedule. 

    Who is eligible to take the classes? 

    3rd-8th grade – 2nd graders and below will be admitted at Mr. Seiler’s discretion based on previous playing experience and overall readiness.  All Middle School students are eligible, subject to scheduling and class availability. 

    What will the classes cost us as a family? 

    These orchestral classes will be covered under tuition.  Additional purchase or rental fees may apply depending on instrument and availability. 

    What if I have a 1st grader or I’m looking for private lessons? 

    Families who are looking orchestral or other instrumental lessons with students who are either too young for this program or seeking additional instruction should connect with Mr. Seiler directly.  He will be offering one-on-one lessons on campus for both string instruments and piano to increase convenience and strengthen abilities of those seeking this level of instruction. 

    Will off-campus music instruction still be available? 

    Yes, we will continue our accommodation of Stubbs Music pickup for those families who choose to utilize that option. 

    For more information, or to express an interest in the Orchestra program, please contact orchestra@maclay.org.