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One Grade Level to Go!

When we say that “anyone with a device and the web can compose using Hyperscore”, we want to mean it. With my current long-term job subbing K-6 music until the end of the school year, I am testing those waters daily! I have tied up the loose ends of the teacher (on leave to have her first child) and transitioned every grade level but one to Hyperscore.

I am following the requirements for the National Core Arts Standards since a team and I will be writing that curriculum this summer. 5th and 6th graders are using every note value grouping, writing harmony and creating form. My 4th graders are preparing this week for harmony and have really enjoyed choosing tone color and the rhythm sketch window! 3rd graders were learning recorders so we start writing B A G songs today.

My most amazing moment was getting 1st and 2nd graders logged in to Hyperscore. Seriously, when you make the first student who successfully logs in into the program an IT consultant, suddenly everyone is helping everyone else and you’re there!! We are using Hyperscore to write quarter, eighth and quarter rest patterns in the rhythm sketch window. 2nd graders will add a half note. I will do 3 days with Kindergarten next week writing steady beat and alternating steady beat. I sure hope Peter can make a QR code for me to get them logged in or it might take all week. Wish me luck!!

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MusicFirst Launches Hyperscore on the Web: 5/2/22 Webinar

New Harmony Line is proud to present the online webinar hosted by MusicFirst’s Founder and Director, Dr. Jim Frankel and Rachel Nicastro, Director of Marketing. Our panel included M.I.T. “Opera of the Future” Professor Tod Machover, New Harmony Line Executive Director June Kinoshita, Chief Technology Officer Peter Torpey and Director of Education, Cecilia Roudabush. Very special guests included Dr. Kevin Jennings and Anne Dugan. Ms. Dugan spoke briefly about her role as Director of Community Partnership for the Sister Cities GirlChoir then eloquently spoke about the power of composition for the girls in their amazing organization. Dr. Jennings Zoomed in from Ireland at 12 midnight to share information about his passion for, and contributions to, the pedagogy of Hyperscore as well as his love of composition.

Do you have a moment to fall in love with Hyperscore if you’re not already there? Please join us in celebrating HYPERSCORE ON THE WEB!!!

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Increased Social/Emotional Wellbeing with Hyperscore?

One of our Beta pilot teachers felt unsure about having her elementary music classes use Hyperscore to become student composers after having spent so much time using Zoom and the computers for class the past 2 years. Understandable for sure! Fortunately, New Harmony Line wanted to do a preliminary study on the social and emotional benefits of composing so we decided to try a mini-study with this teacher and 2 of her primary sections.

I met with the class five times. We started each session with a movement activity, a short lesson and then composition time on individual devices. Students composed rhythms, melodies and a basic harmony with two lines of texture. We collected data at the beginning of the study, every day after composing and at the conclusion of the study. A graduate-equivalency student and a professor agreed to take on the task of analyzing the data which we expect to have this May.

The observational data was outstanding. Students exclaiming, “I made this” and “That was cool–who did that?” and “Hey, everybody, try pushing this button” made my heart sing. My favorite comment of all was the student who assured me he’d figured out “the physics behind this thing”!! Of course, there were students who were frustrated by an uncharged device, trouble logging in or anxiety about trying something new but for the most part the teacher and I saw a lot of joy and creativity. I am long-term subbing K-6 music until the end of the school year June 1st. Guess what we are going to be doing?!!!

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The Wellbeing Project, Hyperscore and Bilbao, Spain

Tod Machover, and New Harmony Line, are looking for students in Bilbao, Spain to compose with Hyperscore as part of the Wellbeing Project. As stated in the mission of The Wellbeing Project:

Globally, many encouraging steps have been taken for greater acceptance and prioritization of mental health and inner wellbeing for those working on some of the world’s most pressing issues. We invite you to build on our collective mission, expand upon it, and help us turn it into a bigger story about human connection, community, and wellbeing.

The first “global event bringing together social change, governmental, arts and business leaders working at the intersection of social change and inner wellbeing” will occur June 1 to June 3, 2022 in Bilbao-Biscay. Professor Machover will be supporting the student composers through this event and then writing a City Symphony that will premiere in 2024. To enjoy previous City Symphony Projects, look under the Projects tab of our website. For more information about this event, check out the Wellbeing Project website and this video explaining Machover’s exciting music project!

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The Little Software That Could

As we prepare this week to bring Hyperscore to MusicFirst.com as a web-based composition tool for student composers (and beyond!), I can’t help but do a little reminiscing. I’ll never forget sitting in Tod Machover’s Hyperscore 2007 workshop at the University of Iowa watching him demo Hyperscore and thinking that this graphic interface was THE missing link for students to demonstrate their understanding of the elements of music through composition! Little did I know that thousands of my student composers would go on to express themselves musically with ease in our Hyperscore unit.

Believe in your vision

I would never have imagined that June and Peter would see my passion for the software and hire me as their Director of Education when I retired from teaching in June of 2021. June has such incredible vision for what Hyperscore can be and Peter just makes it all happen…and I get to work with THEM!

I’ve met incredible teachers through the Beta Pilot program from Iowa and across the U.S. to Portugal, Greece and Canada. The 2022 Texas Music Educator’s Convention introduced us to passionate teachers (Jonathan and Vel Lewis) and users (Ralph) and gave us the opportunity to meet Music Education Technology innovators and authors like Richard McCready (2013 TI:ME Teacher of the Year), Will Kuhn (2015 TI:ME Teacher of the Year) and Dr. Jim Frankel (Director of MusicFirst.com and Board Member of TI:ME). My time on social media introduces me to teachers like Odysseas, Frederico, Kerry and Amanda who loved the old Hyperscore and the new one even more!

From there to here

I am so glad to know now that behind that little unit I did with my junior high Music Tech students was a passionate project created by Mary and Egon in Professor Machover’s MIT Media Lab; that host Alan Alda laughed with delight when introduced to Hyperscore on Scientific American Frontiers; that Dr. Kevin Jennings and Peter Torpey still have many creative ideas about how Hyperscore could and should work; that June doesn’t stop trying to introduce Hyperscore to everyone in the world; and that Tod is preparing for yet another City Symphony, this time in Bilbao, Spain. New Harmony Line is an ever-evolving company committed to the simple-to-use yet musically complex software that is Hyperscore. May we continue to grow the creative community that appreciates and is passionate for what Hyperscore does, and can do, in the future!

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Hyperscore for the Web Goes Live NEXT WEEK!

New Harmony Line is pleased to announce that teachers and student composers around the world will have the opportunity to use Hyperscore for the Web starting with our release next week through MusicFirst.com! Dr. Jim Frankel, Head of Digital Education for Wise Music and Director of MusicFirst, will be hosting a webinar to introduce Hyperscore on Tuesday, May 3rd at 7 pm ET. Register here.

Webinar guests will include three of the staff members of New Harmony Line, Executive Director June Kinoshita, Chief Technology Officer Peter Torpey, and myself, Director of Education, Cecilia Roudabush. Our very special guests will be MIT Media Lab “Opera of the Future” Professor and Composer, Tod Machover, and Dr. Kevin Jennings, who did his doctoral thesis in music pedagogy on Hyperscore and was a contributor to the creative team of Morwaread Farbood and Egon Pasztor who designed the original Hyperscore in the MIT Media Lab under the direction of Professor Machover.

Educators will be offered the opportunity to register for a free trial of Hyperscore through MusicFirst.com. To aid in immediate use of the product, Quick Tool Tips and teaching modules will be provided. I will be writing curriculum throughout the summer to meet National Core Arts Standards along with members of our Beta Pilot teacher team.

Congratulations to June and Peter for their perseverance and passion for Hyperscore as they sought to develop and market a product that allows anyone of any age with access to the internet to be able to express themselves through composing music. Congratulations to all of you who give yourself the gift of composing with Hyperscore!

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“Cheered Me Up on Another Rainy Day”

Many of our Hyperscore student composers don’t think about naming their pieces. Accordingly, I always enjoyed helping my students come up with names based on how they feel or what they think about when they hear their piece. The first time I heard Y.S.’s piece, I thought of happiness. In playing it today, I’m just so grateful for a bit of cheer on yet another rainy April day in Iowa. Because Y.S. was an online student composer in junior high Music Tech 2nd trimester, I can’t ask for approval. However, I hope this “suggested” title does the piece justice. I’m so happy to have this as my background music as I work today!! A+ on all the elements (rhythm, melody, harmony, form) of your project by the way…

Check out the many past and present compositions on our YouTube channel: https://studio.youtube.com/channel/UCSccCX2HRqavoJ5-yvUI6qA/playlists

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Portugal Presents–Part 2!

What a party it was last Wednesday for our students composing with Hyperscore! Music teacher Frederico, English teacher Gabriela and fellow teacher Antonio set up a wonderful presentation for N.R. and I.M. as the class composition winners for their 6th grade in Portugal. A number of students attended to help them celebrate receiving their Starbucks gift cards. We enjoyed N.R.’s “Instrument Battles” last week. Now is our chance to hear the second winner, I.M.’s “Horror Circus”!

6th grader I.M. composed “Horror Circus” for her music class in Portugal

Enjoy this wonderful picture of some of our Hyperscore friends in Portugal with their teacher, Frederico. I will be making a playlist of the many compositions submitted with parent permission for our YouTube channel under “Portugal Playlist”. I think we have some happy composers in his classes!!

Composition celebration Wednesday, 4/6/22
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Portugal Presents!

Isn’t it funny that the title above could be read as “gifts” OR as a “presentation”? Well, teacher Frederico has given us both! I will be posting two pieces from his 6th grade students that were chosen, by their peers, as the class favorites. On Wednesday, I will be Zooming with Frederico, the English teacher/collaborator and the school principal as 12 year olds N.R. and I.M. each receive a gift card for their winning pieces. Today I present “Instrument Battle” by NR. I hope the students have enjoyed writing their pieces as much as I have had listening to them and working with their teacher! Thank you for piloting in Portugal, Frederico!

Watch and listen to “instrument Battle” on our YouTube channel:

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Microtonal-ly Yours

Outside of the box. That is Ralph’s modus operandi when it comes to using his 2007 purchase of Hyperscore. Yes, he is an OG like me! CTO Peter was amazed that Ralph could get Hyperscore to create a microtonal scale. I am not traditionally a microtonal listener, but I have been enjoying Lofi the past couple of years and I would definitely compare these two genres. Listen for yourself–I am so glad Ralph gave New Harmony Line the gift of microtonal with his piece “032822”!

“032822” by Ralph Jarzombek