Meet The "Dynamic Duo"

Meet The "Dynamic Duo"
John Kuzmich, Jr. Ph.D. & Paul Lukasiewicz

Tuesday, June 13, 2023

Bandlab Breaks the Music Education MIDI Sound Barrier

 Once upon a time, school students had to know how to play an instrument to make music or know enough theory to compose a song. We all gathered in the music room or auditorium of our brick-and mortar high schools to learn music and perform it.

The music education world has seen many changes since then; and recently all education has been drastically altered. Today's high school music teachers are very fortunate to have our fingertips the cutting-edge, MIDI-driven BANDLAB for EDUCATION. We are not in-a-pickle, rushing to configure remote learning lessons. Why? Because this wonderful music production-education tool to benefits music educators to meet and exceed standards, and offer their students, public or private, and exciting music listing principles of discovery learning and much easier differentiated instruction. And it's especially well designed for today's critical distance learning needs due the national shut down of school from the virus pandemic. 

MIDI - The Music Education Tool K-12 Can't Live Without: New Benchmarks for Chromebooks

 Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) is the technical standard for connecting electronic musical instruments and computers to record, edit, and playback music.Created in 1983 and 40 years later, it is still essential in music education because playing any keyboard note can generate:

  • Notation
  • Pitch
  • Velocity
  • Panning
  • Vibrato
  • Clock Signals
  • Key Pressure

… and much more, plus hundreds of instruments and sounds; these MIDI messages act as instructions for the computer and music education software. 

All this and a bag of chips:looping, randomizing, instant transposing, cut, copy, paste, drop and drag and more. 

But it is Web MIDI, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standard for MIDI on the Internet that has driven Chromebook adoption in the music education market.

More information at

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

On-Line Study Sibelius 7.5 with Paul Lukasiewicz

Hello All! 
 I'd like to let you know about my first course offered on Udemy (!) It's "Sibelius 7 Basics" and it's perfect for anyone who is new to Sibelius (perhaps switching from Finale,) or just wants to learn more and become more familiar with how Sibelius works and some of it's shortcuts. The course is listed at $25, but if any on your students are interested in signing up in the next two weeks, they can use the coupon code "firstcourse" (all one word) and enroll in the class for $15. If any of you teachers are interested in checking out Sibelius 7 Basics, please let me know and I'll send you a coupon code to try it for free! I'd appreciate any feedback as well! 
The course covers the basics a person needs to know in order to use Sibelius. Here's the course description:

This course assumes that you are already a "musician" (ie. you already know how to read music, play an instrument or sing, and follow a score.) This course will teach you the basics of inputting music into the computer notation program, "Sibelius." I will be demonstrating using version 7.5, however, while what is displayed on the screen will look different for versions previous to 7, the basic functions and shortcuts are all the same.
By the end of the course, the student will be able to:
  • Be familiar with the basic functions of inputing music into Sibelius
  • Add lyrics to a score
  • Transpose a score
  • Export their score in several different formats
The neat thing about Udemy is that you can take the class whenever you want to. All the lessons are videos (screen captures,) so you can sign up and take the classes at your pace. Once you sign up for a class, the material is always available, so you can review it at any time. Udemy also has an iPhone and iPad app, so you can take a class while your on the road or in a hotel (anywhere you have an Internet connection.) The only real difference between Sibelius 7 and 7.5 is the "timeline." Everything else works the same.


Sibelius 7 Basics (Music Notation Software)

An introduction to using Sibelius 7.5 (from for creating music notation.
Take this course

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Latest Published Article: Ear Training!

Most recent article in the August, 2014 issue of School Band & Orchestra magazine on ear training.  Like all articles, there's a lot more information given besides product reviews!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Most Recent Landmark Music Tech Articles!

Recently, I have been able to published some very informative  articles pertinent for  most educators that can enhance how you teach.  All were published  in School Band & Orchestra magazine in the past few months. Note:  all links in blue below work.  Enjoy them!!

John Kuzmich, Jr., Ph.D.


The Best Music Apps for Educators 

These are exciting times for music educators. Desktop computers and laptop notebooks have slowly changed our modes of creating, teaching, and assessing music. But tablets and smartphones have ramped up the music experience faster and farther than we could have imagined. The iPad and table computers are destined to change the way we teach and interact with students and technology. Today’s touchscreen sensitivity, which eliminates the need for a mouse, has also changed the way we work. This is important because it is gives us a more tactile surface which directly influences how we interface with data and music.

From Scanning to Notation to Customized Creativity & Beyond

Ever wish that technology could change the way you prepare, teach, and assess your students? Or maybe help create customized instruction to better define how well all of your students are learning and progressing? Without a user-friendly assessment environment to enable this, teachers rarely have the time to be creative about exploring new solutions. But we are here to help!
Innovative new products now go beyond individual music software applications, incorporating power-user applications for targeted instruction. The key to creating music projects with the power-user concept is in converting files that can be used to transfer data across different software apps for enhanced instructional opportunities.

Videoconferencing and Remote Music Instruction

The widespread use of computers and the Internet today has made distance learning so much easier and faster that now, in addition to virtual schools and universities, even brick-and-mortar schools are delivering more and more curricula online. Interaction with the instructor and other students can now take place via email and class message boards, as well as synchronous “live” interactive instruction, also known as videoconferencing. And the best part is that one doesn’t need to purchase expensive proprietary equipment in order to access these tools. Believe it or not, there are almost 30,000 video conferencing systems in U.S. schools, service centers, district offices, and departments of education. Many are used every day to connect students and teachers around the world.
Videoconferencing allows two (point-to-point) or more locations (multipoint) to communicate by simultaneous, interactive video and audio transmissions. An increasing number of schools across the country teach music technology classes via online classes locally and long-distance simultaneously.

Center Stage: Tech-Oriented Band/String Methods for the Classroom

Exciting, innovative, and interactive technology is now integrated into the best band and string method books for students of all skill levels. The latest tech advances built into these methods are vastly superior to the CD recordings that were themselves innovative when they first became available in method books just 10 or 15 years ago.
Now, it’s all about customization. Students can record themselves and instantly share those recordings with friends and teachers. Practice is jazzed up with choices of loops, styles, tempos, and modulations. Tuning has never been easier thanks to on-screen chromatic tuner software apps. Student assessment is easy and accurate. DVD video recordings provide authentic instruction models and explanations. And best of all, the price of instrumental classroom method books is still a bargain even with new and powerful technology features. Let’s take a closer look at three methods that are leading this new charge: Sound Innovations by Alfred Music Publishing, Essential Elements Interactive by Hal Leonard Corporation, and Tradition of Excellence by Neil Kjos Music Company.
Sight-reading is a lost art form in many performance-dominated music programs. In the professional world, however, it is an essential part of musicianship. In a series of behind-the-scenes videos chronicling the making of the "Hobbit" it is explained that the entire movie score was never rehearsed, and was recorded in just one take without any previous rehearsals or individual practice. (See 11:02 in the link above for commentary from the famous Abbey Road Studios in London, where the 93-piece orchestra sight-read and recorded the sound-track 18,000 miles from the New Zealand movie set.)
Why this critical skill of sight-reading often gets neglected in the classroom is a complicated problem. For example, one band director responded to my inquiry about sight-reading in his rehearsal by complaining, "I'm tired of putting together and taking apart (daily) ensemble sight-reading folders. I'm thinking about not even working on sight-reading this year, except I have to because my school has been assigned to host the district Band and Orchestra festival, so I'd better have my students sight-reading well. Any help will be greatly appreciated."
The days of slogging through notation with pencil and paper and keeping track of dozens of composition rules only to hear your creation played on a piano are long gone. A new wave of technology has facilitated a number of powerful online notation tools. This interactive environment that music teachers need to be aware of includes online storage, web-based applications, electronic grade books, sharing data files, lesson plan dissemination, and more.

Notation Heavy Hitters

First launched in 2007, Noteflight is the pioneer online notation tool. This powerful music writing application can be used to edit, display, and play back music notation through a standard web browser. It has an integrated online library of musical scores that anyone can publish, link to, or post online. Users can write music on a computer, tablet, or smartphone, and then share compositions with other users or embed them into a website.
Epic economic dilemmas require epic solutions. Even while the struggling economy is negatively affecting education, positive and creative options are emerging in music education. We don't need to stand by while furloughs and cuts threaten our profession or watch fine performance ensembles be squeezed between single-section specialty classes. For years, School Band & Orchestra has thrown a spotlight on music educators who are thriving in spite of the downturns around us. And some of our finest innovators are using technology to come up with epic solutions.
One such innovator is Barbara Freedman, of Greenwich, Connecticut, TI:ME's 2012 Teacher of the Year. By reaching out to the wider student population with the help of technology, her music department is on stronger ground, music is being viewed as an educational necessity, and jobs and careers are no longer on the chopping block. As the music technologist at Greenwich High School for the past 11 years, Barbara successfully provides 300+ students (and a waiting list for more) with innovative composition and tech-performance experiences.
Bands, orchestras, and choirs have long been a staple of secondary education in this country. Our performing ensembles have proven to be a resilient and powerful way to actively engage students in music. However, there is a problem. Over the past 40 or more years our performing programs have engaged approximately 20 percent of high school students. While bands, orchestras, and choirs are great for this 20 percent, it leads to the question: "What about the 'other 80 percent'?"
The next question might be, "Why do I care?"
Generally speaking, music teachers are somewhat idealistic (not usually entering the profession for the monetary reward) and would agree with the statement that, "If music is important, it is important for everyone." As a profession, our mission is to enrich the lives of our citizens and the quality of our society through a deepened engagement with music. It is hard to achieve that mission when we don't see a majority of students past sixth grade in a music class or ensemble.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Nine Music Tech Workshops for Everyone!

“On-Line” Graduate College Credit Music Workshops:

For Everyone:
Including Four FREE 1 & 2 Day Workshops!
          Boost your music tech “skills” with cutting-edge tools workshops.  John Kuzmich, Jr. and Paul Lukasiewicz bring 40 years of music tech  experience to these new workshops in three distinct formats in “live” videoconferencing format or on-location in Golden, Colorado  with continuous interactive Internet instruction available world-wide and V.I.P. music industry guests.  Plus graduate college credit, affordable fees and more.  Read on the next page . . .

  1.  Five nationally certified TI-ME Workshops:  1A, 1B, 2A Notation, 2B Interactive Internet Authoring and 2C Integrating Technology in Music Curriculum.  See:
  2.  The Ultimate Music Technology Experience learning how to seamlessly integrate SmartScore, PhotoScore, MusicXML, Sibelius, Finale all together with SmartMusic for customized differentiated instructional materials.  
    Note:  entire workshop can be taken via free-demos. Read this 
    landmark feature article at in the February 2014 issue of School Band & Orchestra magazine and its companion web-site addendum for even more in-depth insight at:
  3.  Four FREE 1 and 2-day Specialty Workshops presenting the first comprehensive, web-based music suite: comprehensive music theory program, artificial intelligence and hands-on digital-audio mastery.

    For more info about these innovative workshops offering six weeks of instruction, go to:

         iPad compatibility with all summer workshops!  See April 2014 issue of School Band & Orchestra magazine for feature article for such compatibility or view at   

    Remote virtual classroom options at

        Unique Videoconferencing Options at
   TI:ME E-Blast at: 

    Primary Workshop web site: for TIME Workshops 2014.html

   Attractive, affordable fees for college credit with $$ rebates at

        Four FREE 1 - 2 day workshops covering must-see specialty products at

             Music Tech Blogging for All Educators at

       10 Special Workshop Features at:

For more information, contact John at