I'll never forget my first mentor. He made such an impact on me that I have a constant reminder of him in my home office.
A new year brings some new sections in SupportED magazine. I am excited about "Letter to Myself," which features Yamaha Master Educators writing a letter to their younger selves during their first year of teaching. These letters are like gems from a time capsule — they are full of inspiration, enthusiasm and sage advice that can only come from decades of dedication.
You have a long list of goals when you enter the classroom each day: Be a better music educator. Help students succeed. Feel inspired and empowered. We want to help you achieve all of your goals.
As New Year's Day approaches, I enjoy a tradition that has inspired me for years. Throughout the year, I take little notes in hopes of having a truthful and worthy response to one question I ask myself every December 31: "What did you learn this year, John Wittmann?"
We want all the pages in SupportED magazine to be full of valuable, relevant and inspiring information that will help you. To ensure this, we often stop and ask ourselves during Yamaha staff meetings, "Are we working in a vacuum?" and "Are we writing the best content to help band and orchestra directors?" We question ourselves because we never want to lose sight of our mission: to inspire and help band and orchestra directors continue to be the best teachers they can be.
Our goal for the magazine — to inspire and help instrumental band and orchestral directors continue to be the best teachers they can be — hasn't changed since we launched SupportED two years ago. In fact, our commitment to this goal is stronger than ever.All the articles in the magazine are about real teachers, successful programs and influential artists.
My team and I are lucky to work with an incredible group of talented Yamaha Performing Artists. One common thread we hear from them is their never-ceasing hunger for continued improvement. Simply put, the most successful musical artists never stop being students of their instruments and of music. We hope that the articles in SupportED feed your never-ceasing hunger to improve as an educational artist in your field.
In my more than 30 years working in music education, I have observed a great deal of change. However, one constant is the overwhelming impact that music teachers have on the overall success of their students.
In every issue of SupportED, we aim to bring fresh perspectives and a new look at age-old challenges faced by music teachers. Our articles are written by and about real teachers, inspiring artists and enlightened experts who share Yamaha's commitment to keeping music education thriving in our country.
Music teachers amaze me with their hunger for ways to improve their students' experiences with music, while never resting on their quest for higher art and deeper challenges. That, in turn, motivates and inspires us as we put together each and every issue of SupportED.
I started working full time with Yamaha in 1997 after being a Yamaha Performing Drum Set Artist for a number of years. One of the first projects I spearheaded was the Yamaha Young Performing Artist competition (YYPA), which recognizes outstanding young musicians from the worlds of classical, jazz and contemporary music.
The magazine's articles are written by and about real teachers, inspiring artists and enlightened experts who share Yamaha's commitment to keeping music education thriving in our country.
Our goal for the magazine is to inspire and help instrumental band and orchestral directors continue to be the best teachers they can be. In this and future issues, we will share articles about real teachers, successful programs and influential artists.