Harmony Road Music Course is a comprehensive musicianship program using solfege singing, movement, and piano (keyboard) to teach musical concepts and audiation (inner hearing). The first book in the series, The Music in Me, was introduced in 1981. Course founder, Jan Keyser, recognized the need for an introduction to musical concepts which would involve the whole child through active participation in movement, singing, rhythms, piano and creative activities. All Harmony Road materials evolved from thorough testing in classroom settings. Approximately 30,000 children across the United States are currently enrolled in music schools offering the Harmony Road Courses.
Today the curriculum consists of 26 books and five distinct age appropriate courses beginning with toddlers and continuing to age 11. The curriculum is carefully designed to layer pitch, rhythmic patterns, and song content. For example, a child of seven may play a solo or ensemble which was first experienced as a movement or singing activity in Toddler Tunes (18 months to 3). This layering process is unique to the Harmony Road Curriculum.
Harmony Road Music Courses use the European fixed "DO" solfege system. Solfege singing encourages strong development of pitch and prepares the young music student for successful performing, composing, and arranging experiences. Because of this vocal approach to playing, students develop great sensitivity for expressiveness, articulations, and balance of voices on the piano.
The music in the method is varied to include classical to contemporary styles and harmonic content. Students are trained to compose, arrange and improvise after they have achieved an understanding of melodic development and harmonic progressions. This broad-based development of musicianship provides the student with excellent skills for critical listening and confident performance of repertoire.
Harmony Road supports parent involvement in class and at home. The involvement of the parent creates a "team" approach which enriches the whole musical experience, not just the piano.
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