This October marks the 27th annual International Conference of The Children’s Music Network (CMN). I’ve been a board member of this fine organization on and off since the mid-90’s– shortly after starting my career. In fact, I even agreed to be co-president elect with David Heitler-Klevans this next year. The people I’ve met, songs I’ve learned and shared, and passion for those who create, appreciate and use children’s music, makes this conference one of my favorite events. The Los Gatos, CA area is a beautiful wooded area just south of San Francisco, and the weekend weather over the October 14-16 weekend should be blue-skyed and warm. CMN’s conference is a place to share resources and ideas, attend workshops and learn innovative techniques, and be creative with your peers. The International Conference is open to anyone– and CMN offers scholarships through its Pete Seeger Fund. You don’t have to be a member of CMN to attend– just bring your passion for children and music.
Besides all the above, and getting to see my friends and peers from the field, these are the three things I’m looking forward to this year:
- Keynote Presentation: Melanie DeMore, “Ms. DeMore is a singer/songwriter, composer, conductor and vocal activist, who believes in the power of voices raised together. She has a career spanning 30 years dedicated to teaching, lecturing, mentoring, conducting, directing and inspiring children and adults about the power of song as social and political change. Melanie DeMore is also one of the outstanding vocal artists dedicated to preserving the African American Folk tradition through Gullah stick pounding and was featured in the documentary “Stick and Pound” showcasing the tradition.”- CMN
- Magic Penny Award Recipient: José-Luis Orozco, “The Magic Penny Award is given to people who have demonstrated lifetime achievement in the field of children’s music, and José-Luis Orozco has dedicated his life to bringing Spanish and English children’s songs to children all over the world. In addition to being a performer, José-Luis is also a bilingual educator, songwriter, children’s author, and recording artist who has created music, books, and videos for children in both languages. He encourages the learning of the Spanish language and promotes Latin American culture through his art.”- CMN
- Workshops!! “Song and Game Swaps, Professional Development, Community Music Making, and Early Childhood and Elementary Music Resources. The content is rich, the presenters terrific! There will be MANY exciting workshops offered at this year’s conference and you will be able to get credit for Professional Development while learning, singing and having fun!” – CMN
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