BW's New Horizons Music Program: Laura Joss

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The New Horizons music program was started at the Eastman School of Music in 1991 and now has more than 100 programs in the United States and Canada. Baldwin Wallace's New Horizons program offers adults the opportunity to learn to play an instrument (strings, woodwind, brass or percussion). This is perfect for adults who have never had the opportunity to play an instrument or for those who played during their school days but have not had the opportunity since. They offer bands (beginning, intermediate and advanced levels), jazz band, string orchestras (beginning, intermediate and advanced levels) and chamber music ensembles. BW's New Horizons Band is a partnership of the Conservatory Outreach Department, Institute for Learning in Retirement and Music Education Department.


Laura Joss has served as the chair of the music education department at Baldwin Wallace University Conservatory of Music since 1999. She teaches instrumental music education methods, foundational classes, supervises student teachers and conducts the BW Concert Wind Ensemble.

Joss's teaching experience includes working with instrumentalists of all ages and levels of experience in both orchestras and bands. She is deeply committed to community outreach and is the founding director of the BW New Horizons Music Program which provides beginning instrumental music instruction for adults of all ages. This program currently involves over 150 adults who participate in one of the three concert bands, jazz band, beginning string classes, string orchestras, full orchestra or a chamber music program. She is also the founding director of the String Teaching Partnership, a partnership between BW, the Cleveland Orchestra and the Cleveland Metropolitan School District that provides pre-service music educators the opportunity to teach young string players at all levels in the Cleveland public schools while working closely with members of the Cleveland Orchestra. In 2002, she co-founded the BW Summer Band and String Camps which now provide more than 500 students a quality music education experience every summer.

Joss has traveled to South America as part of an artist in residency program sponsored through the Ohio Arts Council and the Santiago Chilean North American Cultural Institute. She has conducted both bands and orchestras at the Liceo Experimental de Musica Copiapo in Copiapo, Chile and facilitates teacher work sessions in rehearsing, conducting, literature selection, instrument pedagogy and the writing of the National Chilean Artistic School music education curriculum. She has also coached music educators and conducted instrumental ensembles at the Universidad of Chile, the Universidad de la Serena and served as the master teacher for a weeklong clinic, First Encuentro de Directores de Bandas de Concierto Escuelas Artisticas del Norte de Chile in Santiago, Chile. Joss has also developed programming and teacher exchange projects in Buenos Aires, Argentina with the Instituto at the Teatro Colon.

Joss continues to enjoy being active both nationally and internationally as an adjudicator, guest conductor, music education consultant and clinician for both bands and orchestras.

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