March is Support Music in our Schools month.
Music affects everyone – even more so in students of performing arts. Knox Band Director Craige Phipps says most of his students are excited to come to school because they are involved in music classes. He believes keeping music in schools is extremely important.
“Students are always looking for a form of expression in some form – whether it’s musical, it’s the way they look, the way they dress or their hair. Music is one of those universal things that applies to everything they do. It’s a chance to work together for a common goal and that is to express yourself in a positive way,” Phipps expressed.
Phipps said the Knox students are lucky in that the school community and the school corporation are supportive of the music program.
“They have bent over backwards to make sure that we have instruments that we need and quality facilities,” Phipps explained. “They help us out in any possible way they can. Every so often I’ll have a new student move into the community and they say, ‘Wow! We had this old junky marimba that barely stood up and a bass drum that had a hole in the side of it and you’ve got three bass drums that are sitting here and there’s one for each room!’ It’s amazing and that’s all due to the support that the Knox schools have given us.”
Phipps’s goal with his students is make them good citizens and life-long musicians.
“I just want them to love the music and want to play years after. I have alumni that graduated the first and second year or even the third year that I was here that still come back and play with the pep band every time they’re home,” Phipps said.
Music classes stick with you well after school, even if you don’t play an instrument or sing anymore. The stories remain as good conversation and good memories. A few members of the staff were in band in school and have many of those stories to tell.
WKVI’s Anita Goodan talked more with Craige Phipps about the importance of music in schools and that entire interview will air later this week.