Youth Orchestra Opportunity

Music Colleagues!
Lyceum Philharmonic is holding auditions this week for its 2018-2019 Season. These auditions are open to all students going into 9-12th grade next Fall regardless of where they attend school. This is an after-school youth orchestra designed to collaborate not compete with your amazing curricular programs. We rehearse once per week on Wednesdays from 3:45-5:50 at American Heritage School (736 N 1100 E, American Fork). Note that we plan our season assuming that a portion of our winds, brass, and percussion will not be available at all until mid-November due to marching band commitments after school.
The audition is very straightforward — a scale of their choosing and a 5 minute solo. Most students have something they recently did at Region or State. Memorization and accompaniment are optional Students should be in private lessons, and we are happy to help them find a teacher if needed. Seats are competitive in most instrument categories but we are looking for more bassoons, violas and basses. Tuition is $65 per month Sept-May. There are talent, need, and work-credit scholarships available. No students are turned away for financial reasons so long as they are willing to volunteer. There is a ton of info on our and websites. Also check out our YouTube Channel — it just went over 1 million views. This program has grown to 5, soon to be 6 orchestras. The other groups hold auditions in August.
Please let your students know about this opportunity. I’m happy to contact them personally if you provide the info or you could forward this email to your ensemble. Also, I invite you to take a look at our 2018-19 calendar attached and let me know if you see potential conflicts with your season next year. I want to a better job of communicating with local teachers and value your input on how we can better work together to enrich the lives of Utah’s young musicians. Know that we always defer to school ensembles when students have scheduling conflicts. With 90+ youth in 30+ schools across Utah, not a single Lyceum concert goes by without someone needing to miss so that they can support their school program. It’s difficult for us but so worth it because I know how much good you do and how important school programs are. If it wasn’t for my school directors at Logan High growing up, I never would have discovered my love of music. Know that we support you and want to hear from you!
2018-19 Rep: The Price of Freedom by Rob Gardner, Christmas Concerts with guest TBA (last year it was Marie Osmond/David Osmond/Lexi Walker), Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 6 the  “Pathétique” side by side with the University of Utah Philharmonia performed at Abravanel Hall, Student Concerto Concert rep TBD, and Respighi’s Pines of Rome at Thanksgiving Point Waterfall Amphitheater. We will also be preparing music for our 5th commercial album to be released in the Fall of 2019. The album we released last November, Simple Gifts, hit No. 7 on the Billboard Classical Charts and is available  on iTunesAmazonGoogle Play, and on shelves at stores like Seagull Book.
Our bio:

Lyceum Philharmonic at American Heritage School, led by Kayson Brown, has reached the top of the Billboard Charts, was featured on PBS with The Piano Guys, recorded for SONY Masterworks with Lexi Walker, and has been viewed over 100 million times on YouTube! These accomplished young musicians come from more than 30 schools across the state of Utah to participate in the after-school Lyceum Orchestras Program at American Heritage School in American Fork, Utah. They are part of a comprehensive program consisting of five audition-only orchestras that inspire and mentor students ages 5 to 18. They seek to: Inspire – nurture a love of elevated music, increased faith, and patriotism through purposeful events and media. Instruct – develop self-discipline, skills, and character through transformational teaching and professional-level experience and interaction. And Impact (Result of Inspiring and Instructing) – awaken individuals, families and communities to the power music has to change hearts and minds while fulfilling divine potential.

Steven Sharp Nelson of The Piano Guys said, “The Lyceum Orchestras Program is an incomparable combination of everything that music is meant to be — joy, refinement, belonging, and fun. It offers kids the kind of opportunities that make music exciting and cool. It provides an environment that isn’t blindly affixed upon purposeless perfection, but rather a more selfless pursuit of excellence. My favorite part of Lyceum is its inherent spirituality. There is a special feeling suggesting a profound development not only of the body and mind, but of the soul.”
Thank you for passing this info along to your students who may benefit from an after-school musical opportunity like this. Thank you for all you do and good luck with your end of the year concerts!
​LOVE music MORE​

2018 Basin Honor Band

You should all register for this opportunity.  It is not required, but you would be foolish to not do it.  Seniors it is a last chance to play some new music before you leave us.  Don’t miss the chance.

Marching Band Time

It’s time to start planning for the next Marching Band Season.  We will be again hosting some Saturday events to introduce what we do to potential students.  The first such event will be held on March 3rd in the band room at the HS.  The other dates include April 7, and two Saturdays in May.

We are in the process of creating an Honor Band for the region.  The dates for that have not been set yet, but will likely require us to cancel one of the May MB clinics.  As soon as that information is locked in we will update you.

Either way you will want to keep both May 12 and 19 free for band.

National Honors Ensemble Auditions

Students may now apply to be in a National Honors Ensemble.

We are excited to announce that applications are NOW OPEN for the 2018 NAfME All-National Honor Ensembles. This year’s event will take place November 25-28, 2018 at Walt Disney World’s Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, FL. The 2018 program will also include our first-ever All-National Honor Guitar Ensemble! Attached please find the 2018 promotional flyer, and ensemble selection procedure. You can find all current information about the 2018 ANHE program at

Here is the flyer:


A Message From Scott Lang

With greater rigor comes a greater education. This has been the mantra and formula used by reformists and political pundits for almost two decades. Through it all, America’s youth have been pushed, pulled, prodded, and cajoled through dizzying levels of sleep deprivation and stress, often leading to depression, angst, and academic burnout.

Since 2010, schools across this country have turned to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) based curricula in hopes of feeding the frenzy of helicopter parents who crave competition and rigor. Needing proof that their children are prepared for college and a global marketplace, schools are being forced to drive curricula towards technical skills that have an ever decreasing shelf life of relevance and usability.

Are we pushing kids too far too fast? Is it possible that in an effort to do good, we are actually doing long-term damage? Where will it stop? When will it end? How long before preschool becomes pre-med?

Gone are teaching and training of soft skills. Gone are the days of teaching of requisite and important social skills. Gone are the days of exploration and discovery.

Through it all, there is some evidence that STEM is not driving innovation but is in fact inhibiting it.

As a part of a major initiative to analyze its workforce, Google undertook a comprehensive and long ranging study of its employees and what makes them successful or not. What they found shook not just Google but the entirety of Silicon Valley, akin to the earthquakes they have become accustomed to.

Project Oxygen concluded that, “among the eight most important qualities of Google’s top employees, STEM expertise came in dead last. The seven top characteristics of success at Google are all soft skills: being a good coach; communicating and listening well; possessing insights into others, valuing different points of view; having empathy toward and being supportive of one’s colleagues; being a good critical thinker and problem solver; and being able to make connections across complex ideas.”

Those traits sound more like what one gains as an English or music major than as a computer programmer. Could it be that top Google employees were succeeding despitetheir technical training, not because of it?

After bringing in anthropologists and ethnographers to dive even deeper into the data, the company enlarged its previous hiring practices to include humanities majors, musicians, artists, and even the MBAs and company founders once viewed with disdain.

Yes, science, technology, and math are important. We need engineers to understand schematics. We need architects to understand blueprints. We need programmers to understand code. But, we also need humans who understand humans.

And the arts, music in particular, makes people more human and help us to understand what it is to be human.

Have a great week!