join forces

Perhaps a palpable challenge will be in an ongoing understanding and acceptance of purposes, both of services and of curricula, and how we can join forces to achieve these. School music has been going between an aesthetic purpose – art for arts sake – and a functional or utilitarian purpose since the mid-1950s. As an arts discipline, is music statically only aesthetically academic, or only utilitarian for entertainment and ceremonies? This may be were praxis of pluralism thrives: music has many purposes and roles, and it can attract students for any number of reasons. Recreation and leisure service departments, likewise, have engaged a broad range of activities in the service of citizens. The school music profession, led by scholars both questioning and developing our purposes, while realizing a greater need to advocate for the continuation of music in schools, started to argue a broader, more pluralistic philosophy (McCarthy and Goble, 2005). The intersection of history, purposes, and interests serves as a starting point toward a mission of collaboration among flailing institutions in efforts to fully serve our citizens.


McCarthy, M. and Goble, J. (2005). The praxial philosophy in historical perspective. In
D. Elliott (ed.) Praxial music education, pp. 19-51. New York, NY: Oxford
University Press.


About mundyviar

Basil Mundy Viar, III, is a newly relocated music teacher in the Palm Springs Unified School District of California, USA. For the past 18 years, he served the students and families within the Mt. Diablo Unified School District. In this role, he discovered the need for a reevaluation of the roles, purposes, and directions of scholastic music in a changing community and in a changing economy. The direction of his doctoral work was largely influenced by this experience. He researches the attitudes, levels of satisfaction, and lifelong learning effects of music training both inside and outside of the traditional school experience, with an eye on the roles that community based organizations may play in this. Prior to his assignment as a public school music teacher, Dr. Viar served as a Program Director for the Blue Devils, an internationally revered youth organization dedicated to performance excellence, also based in Concord, California, USA. During his time with the Blue Devils, the "B" Corps was reinvigorated and performed with renewed excitement, proficiency, and levels of success. Under Dr. Viar's guidance, BDB performed in the 1997 Drum Corps International World Championships in Orlando, Florida, and the 1998 World Marching Band Festival in Kanagawa Prefecture Japan. Basil Mundy Viar, III, is a graduate of the Transformative Inquiry Department at the California Institute of Integral Studies (PhD) in San Francisco, California, USA. He earned a Master of Arts degree in Education from the University of California, Berkeley; Single Subject Teaching Credential from the Bay Area College of Chapman University in Orange, California; and a Bachelor of Science degree from the School of Community and Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University of Richmond, Virginia, USA.
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