Most teens in the 21st century have never danced to live music! To compound this social absurdity we pay a DJ hundreds of dollars to play canned music at a community dance when we have talented students who would play for pizza.
David Mills has assembled a team of musicians, teachers and students to develop a new-style dance band. The mission is to reunite live music with social dancing. By creating life-long opportunities to play orchestral instruments, we can inspire students to stick with their instruments even when a future in classical music seems unlikely.
A DoSo® Dance Band can perform with just seven musicians, and the scores are flexible in order to accommodate those who play instruments not usually associated with improvised music.
The intention is that each arrangement can be played by good, high school musicians with plenty of room for virtuosity in the improvisation sections. A school could have an extra-curricular dance band club, and the students might find themselves performing every weekend rather than just the occasional recital or school concert.
The DoSo® Dance Band is also a great asset for fund-raising events. Below is a 2-minute video excerpt from a fund-raising performance. The musicians are students and faculty from Neighborhood Music School ranging in age from 15 – 60+.
This next 80-second video will give you a glimpse of how we transform classically trained musicians into “jammers”:
David Mills introduces the Dance Band Violin at the ASTA National Conference 2013.