Dear Fellow Students,
(Please share this with your parents and teachers.)
In less than 10 days, our music festival will begin. I am excited and
looking forward to welcome you all. With your collaboration, we will
have a great three weeks together. We have 33 students plus three
mothers this year, that is just about the maximum dorm spaces given to
us by Walnut Hill School. I am working on the housing details to make
sure you are all safe and comfortable. Other items that we are working
on are: piano rental and tuning, evening snacks, student data,
transportation, field trips, and etc. There will be last minute
adjustments, please be patient and flexible. Thank you.
There are a few reminders that I would like to have your attention:
1. Please bring with you a lot of smile, flexibility, and enthusiasm to
learn, and we will provide plenty of fresh air, best teachers, and good
memories. Please read the “General Information” again and pack light.
2. The official language of this festival is English. Translation will
be provided if needed. An E-dictionary is useful. However, after the
first 10 days, I will expect that you could handle it by yourself. We
have an English speaking clarinet student this year. It is just like we
had many American born Chinese students before who does not understand
Chinese. However, after three weeks, they learned Chinese, and other
Chinese students’ English improved a lot. Both your Chinese and English
names will be used by the teachers. Remember, it is impolite to speak a
language while someone there does not understand.
3. This is a three weeks of intensive musical learning, not vacation.
Mr. Nai-Yuan Hu will teach all violin majors the first day July 30 or 31
with 20 min each. All other classes will start right away. You do not
have time for adjusting jetlag. You should rest as much as you could on
the airplane over to reserve energy, you will be busy after your
arrival. The first one or two days may seem long, but it will soon be
4. Nothing is scheduled for July 29. My assistants and I will be back
and forth from airport and bus/train stations to meet students. After
dinner, we may (to be confirmed) have an informal welcome gathering at
Amelia Hall (at the first floor of Highland dorm.)
5. (depends on the arrival details of all students, we may do this
either on 7/30 or 7/31): Please prepare a 30 seconds self introduction
in English. Unless everyone in the room could speak and understand
Chinese, we will use English. We will also review safety issues, signups
for field trips, students-on-duty, and practice rooms rules at this
6. Most likely, at the first or second evening (very late), when
everyone is tired and sleeping, we could have an un-announced fire drill
conducted by school security department. Everyone has to leave the dorm
quickly, get outside within 90 seconds with shoes on. The security
guards will stand outside with a stop-watch and do a head count. We have
to pass this test. Otherwise, it will be repeated at another
un-announced evening, until we pass it. This is a serious matter please
take a note of it.
7. Walnut Hill School will collect from each of you a $70 key deposit
when you check in. It will be refund to you when you return your key at
8. Please let me know as soon as possible if you are going to
participate in the concerto competition. These students will have piano
lessons on Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue first, and work with Miss Zhao
Wang, our piano accompanist.
So far there are 5 who will participate, and 4 “maybe”:
Concerto competition: 5 yes and 4 maybe
4: Wayne Chang
9: Rui Chi
31. Lynn Han-Lin Yun
32. LiangDianZi Zhang
33. Rui Zhang
9: Rui Chi
12. Hong-Ge Du
13. Sida Fu
24. Hai-Yun Song
Please confirm and we welcome more piano major to participate.
9. Aug 17 is reserved for those who would like to have a solo
performance (in addition to the Gala concerts on Aug 19). There are many
who would like to do so. This is, of course, upon the approval by our
faculty members. Everyone will perform at the Gala concerts on 8/19. All
the new chamber music you are assigned to will be performed as well.
10. Except pianists, voice, and composer, everyone will join the
Longwood Symphony Orchestra’s rehearsals and performances. You could
check online at www.Longwoodsymphony.org for more details. The orchestra
scores will be available online, you should download and start practice.
Mr. Jonathan McPhee, conductor of Boston Ballet and Longwood Symphony,
is a world renowned master and he has high expectation from all
11. This is a festival of NO DRUG, NO SMOKING, NO ALCOHOL. Any violation
will result in an immediate expel without any excuse.
12. This is also a camp of environmental/energy conservation conscious
camp. Please do your part for energy conservation, recycle, and do not
waste any resources. You should bring a water bottle that you can refill
from the dining hall and use it daily. The tap water directly from the
faucet is safe to drink. The quality of Massachusetts’ tap water is very
high. It is under strict federal regulations more so than the commercial
bottled water. This is a fact that is well documented. For the health of
general public, Massachusetts government is promoting a “No Soda”
summer. Although there are coin-operated soda machines in the dining
hall, I hope you will drink water or tea instead.
13. Please read the attached schedule updates, and general information
again and let me know if you have any questions. The daily private
lessons/chamber coaching will be posted and updated daily, sometimes at
midnight, with very short notice. Please be prepared and be flexible. A
sample from 2009 is attached for your reference only. Each of you will
have a student ID number.
14. All classrooms are open, you are welcome to sit in and listen to
other students’ lessons. Proper dress code is required. This applies to
adults also. Dress properly, simple and with self respect. It is a
“science” to be learned. It also reflects your personal taste.
15. The dorm room assignment, chamber music audition schedule on Friday
7/30 will be ready and emailed to you soon. Highland and Stowe are the
dormitories that we are staying in this year (boys will be at Stowe).
They are nice wooden buildings over 100 years old with no elevator and
no air-condition. Buildings of that age are very common in New England.
You have to carry your own luggage upstairs, so be prepared when
packing. Pack light and efficiently. Most important, bring with you a
lot of smile and cheerfulness, an open mind and a desire of willingness
to work hard.
16. I have ordered 10 copies, the English original “Piano Pieces” by Mr.
Russell Sherman at $20 each (we paid for the tax and shipping). If you
want to buy one and have his signature after his master class on Aug 15,
you should email me now and reserve one. You pay when you pick up the
book at check in. You could also order your own, or buy a Chinese
edition and ask for his signature.
17. Let me know if you want to be roommate with someone. We cannot
guarantee but will try our best to meet your request. Right now the only
request received was that LingHsuan Ariel Kao and Chia-Wei Janice Liao
would like to be roommates.
18. You should bring your own tooth brush, shampoo and etc. If you run
out of the supply, you could get it from local stores easily.
19. There are parents and students in Taiwan who probably could answer
most of your questions regarding campus safety, the neighborhood, and
etc. They are Mrs. Huang (Jean Huang’s mom: 07-2822-628, 02-8211-1409),
Mrs. Lo (Chi-Wei Lo’s mom: 07-726-3365). I am available to answer your
calls. My home is 781-259-8195, cell 617-968-7094.
20. Highland and Stowe are wireless till 12 midnight (to be confirmed).
The computer lab at the Academic and Technology Center is available to
us during office hours. We have iron and ironing board in Highland also.
Please keep everything nice and clean.
21. The chamber audition schedule for Friday, 7/30 will be ready soon.
The schedule may have some minor adjustment depends on the teachers’
schedule. You should prepare two pieces of contracting styles. Each
person has about 5 min. You should come to Amelia Hall at least 15 min
before your turn, have instrument out of the case, and wait inside. Mr.
Lynn Chang, Mr. NaiYuan Hu, and other teachers are arranging the chamber
grouping now, but will make rearrangement after the audition.
22. If you are taking piano or violin as minor, you have to be heard at
this audition for your minors. You should dress up but don’t over dress.
It is not an on stage performance. If you are confused, ask me or my
assistants for clearification.
23. Don’t forget to bring your swimming suit and enjoy the nice pool.
Bring something for the bug bites. Gentlemen may want to bring some
short sleeve shirts and polo shirts. T-shirts are not allowed in
concerts, master classes, and formal gatherings. You can NOT have
anything that might consider fire hazard, such as lighter, matches,
iron, rice cooker, and etc.
24. Check online for the best calling cards and bring it with you. There
is one pay phone on the first floor of Highland dorm, and one at the
dining hall. You can buy Skype credits online and install it into your
Skype account. http://www.skype.com
25. I hope you will meet your life-long friends here. You should also
take the advantage to learn as much as you could from our outstanding
faculty members. Their teachings are not just limited to the classrooms,
but also at the dining table, on the bus, or by the swimming pool. Come
with an open mind and learn from all teachers, to accept the challenge
of exploring new ideas.
26. A few words on proper manner in writing emails: You could email me
in either English or Chinese. When email to someone who is older or
senior, such as your teachers or your parents’ friends, uncle/aunt…
always address them properly. You should start your letter as:
Dear Ms. Chambless (or Mrs. Chan, Teacher Tan, Tan laoshih, Mr. Lesser,
Mr. Chen, ..) Do not use their first name without their permission.
Always end your letter with: Sincerely, Best Regards, Regards….
Remember, this is a letter send to your teachers by internet, instead of
by post office with a stamp. It is not a text message, MSN, Face book
messages to your classmates. It is always more formal in writing then in
verbal conversation. If you are writing in Chinese, the same rules
27. Bring your own towels and music scores. We provide pillow, sheets,
towel, and blanket. They are rented from linen service company, new and
clean for your enjoyment.
It may seem that we have a lot of “rules”. However, this is a short
3-weeks, I hope you could “suffer” through it. Thank you for your
patience and understanding, and see you soon. More emails will follow.
Cathy Chan (譚嘉陵老師)
Home: 781-259-8195, Cell: 617-968-7094