The Lux String Quartet performed for students in the music classroom at Meadowbrook Elementary in Golden Valley. The performers gave each of their instruments an animal name based on their high to low range, from left: Erika Blanco, first violin (hummingbird); Samuel Rudy, second violin (gopher); Eric Graf, cello (bear); Benjamin Davis, viola (wolf).
One of the main themes of Lux's performance was the importance of collaboration: working together toward a common goal. The four aspects of collaborating according to Lux are to take turns, be respectful, and practice. Here, violist Benjamin Davis demonstrates the opposite of collaboration by going off from the group and doing his own thing while the rest try to perform.
To play well together (or "collaborate") a music ensemble must: 1) start in the same place, 2) look at one another, 2) move (feel it out), and 4) breathe together with a slight head movement to have the same tempo. Remember the three Ls: look, listen and lean (into the tempo).
Students listen for what order the instruments of the quartet enter in Dvorak's "American" String Quartet.
Students vote on the order that each instrument entered in the music.
The other key lesson from Lux's performance is that music can have characters. Here Lux performs a dreamy section of Dvorak's "American" String Quartet. Cellist Eric Graf plays the part of the Dreamer, who is imaginative and peaceful.
Two other characters that Lux portrayed were the Explorer (second violinist Sam Rudy, left) and the Hero (first violinist Erika Blanco, right). The Explorer is curious and adventurous, and the Hero is bold, confident and brave.
Cellist Eric Graf and violist Benjamin Davis relax between performances.