September 14, 2014
Monday, 13 January 2014 13:26    Print E-mail
Dear NH ASTA Members and friends,

        I hope that you have had a wonderful, rejuvenating summer, and that the start of the school year is going well for you and your students

        This past year, our chapter held two successful festivals: the fall festival for high school students at UNH, and the March Stringfest at Mountain View Middle School.  Your NH ASTA board also spent quite a bit of time and energy straightening out our legal paperwork with both the state and the IRS. Along the way, we updated our bylaws and wrote amendments to our original incorporation documents from 1977 so that they more accurately reflect our organization of today.   

         I am attaching a calendar of events for the coming academic year. Here are some key details from the NH Music Educators’ Association website: the deadline for your students to register for All-State Orchestra auditions through their public school is October 10th. This year, the violin piece is the 1st Movement of the Concerto in E major (BWV 1042) by J.S. Bach. The violists must prepare the first and second movements of the Marcello Sonata in G major, and cellists will play Saint-Seans’ Allegro Appassionata. The bass piece is Antonio Capuzzi’s Concerto in D major. More details are available on NHMEA’s website, ( including printable scales for each instrument. The actual auditions will take place on November 15th in Manchester.

         Unfortunately, we have had to cancel the fall festival for this year.  We hope to put together a similar-but-better event for 2015: an orchestra festival for our high school students concurrent with professional development sessions for the teachers, most likely held at UNH.  Many of you who responded to our member survey this past year indicated a desire for more teacher workshops, and we intend to make this happen.  We are looking for your input to make this festival a great experience for your students. Please take a moment to fill out this brief survey:

        For ASTA members only, there is a new resource available through the national website ( called “Café Strings.” It is a group of online “communities” designed for you to exchange ideas and share your activities with your colleagues. If you have not visited the national website lately, please take a few moments to do so – you will be pleasantly surprised at the wealth of helpful information at your fingertips.

        Another ASTA initiative that I would like to explore is the Certificate Advancement Program. This has been around for a few years, but as far as I know, no one in NH has used it. This program establishes definite goals and awards for students of all levels through non-competitive examinations. Students are judged on technical and musical preparedness at specific levels. A ribbon of achievement is awarded for each level successfully completed. The program is currently being updated and expanded with an online version, so students will not have to travel far to find a certified adjudicator. However, if we have several members interested in this and some willing to become judges in the program, then we could hold exams in NH. Please let me know if this is something you are interested in exploring.

        Planning for Stringfest 2015, which will be held on March 28th, is underway. You will soon receive all of the necessary information from Alison Yankowskas, who is once again coordinating the registrations for this event.

Finally, I would like to know if you are comfortable receiving all of our chapter information via e-mail, or if you would prefer to receive “hard copies” in the mail. I am preparing to mail a copy of this letter to each of our members. If you do not feel that you need a copy and are happy to have e-mail be your primary source of information for all of the NH ASTA events, please respond to this message immediately and let me know, saving us a bit of postage.

Thank you for your replies, and I hope that you have a wonderful year!

Sally Wituszynski


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