Department Chair: Mr. Knox Sutterfield
The purpose of the music program at Trinity-Pawling is to expose all students to a wide range of performing arts. This includes participation, attendance and appreciation.
The audition-based Trinitones represent the long standing tradition of musical excellence at Trinity-Pawling. Founded by former director, Paul Nelson, this group has performed at such prestigious venues as the United Nations and Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center. The Trinitones are active both in the concert hall and in the community.
The Glee Club (Formerly The Screamers)
The namesake of the original choral ensemble at Trinity-Pawling is primarily composed of newcomers to the choral program. While singing in the TPGC, students will learn the fundamentals of good singing and music literacy – skills that will be valuable through all walks of life. The group will meet weekly, with the opportunity for small-group voice lessons.
Private lessons are arranged as needed with local musicians who come on campus to teach. Usually they are during the evenings, but often are scheduled during a day-time free period. Instruments have included piano, guitar, drums, brass and woodwinds.
An Understanding Of Music (Formerly Music Theory)
Designed for veteran members of the music program, this course will cover a myriad of topics. Initial discussions will include the fundamental question, “What is Music?” The course will be based on concerts in New York City, giving the students the opportunity to hear live performances of world-class orchestras, such as the New York Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, and Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Concert programs will serve as the basis for the course curriculum. Students will study the composer, genre, compositional traits and cultural context of a work prior to seeing a concert of the studied piece. Students will be evaluated on formal writing assignments and written tests.
Trinity-Pawling Singers (Formerly The Choir)
This ensemble, consisting of approximately 40 voices, is composed mostly of upperclassmen. In this ensemble, students will perform a variety of repertoire ranging from Renaissance to contemporary, often performing large-scale works with orchestral accompaniment. This ensemble regularly collaborates with other schools, performing standard mixed (SATB) repertoire.
The goal of this group is to use music from all genres and eras to train independent, free-thinking musicians. Music literacy and voice techniques will be taught in the classroom, then reinforced and assessed in small-group settings on a bi-weekly basis. Additionally, students will be asked to do brief in-class writing assignments based on significant musical compositions.
Students will be expected to work diligently and practice regularly, fostering the improvement of individual musicianship as well as a polished, cohesive choral ensemble.
The Jazz band is made up of students interested in playing jazz and rock. Any instrument is welcome. They meet twice a week and perform at all the school concerts. The abilities of the participants vary, and parts are adapted to accommodate all players. This is a laid-back way to keep up with an instrument and make private lessons pay off.