Welcome to Mrs. Courtien’s Music class page!
It has been my great privilege to offer Music to hundreds of kids over the last 24 years. There is no greater joy than seeing a child master a song they thought was too difficult to sing! During my first 16 years, I directed our 7th and 8th grade students in performances of Broadway musicals such as “The Sound of Music”, “Oklahoma!”, “Peter Pan” and “Bye Bye Birdie”. Currently, I offer weekly classes in Music Theory as well as Music Appreciation. Each month, I introduce a different classical composer as well as teaching about the symphony orchestra and the different eras of Classical Music from Baroque to Modern. Vocal Music is offered to children in grades 5-8 who audition and demonstrate a love for singing. This group leads song at our liturgies, seasonal concerts, Holy Hours and prayer services.
In all things, I try to keep the prayer and love of our faith ever-present. I make it a point to teach the music of our Church seasons, including Advent, Lent, Christmas, Easter and the songs of praise in Ordinary Time. My favorite part of the job is helping to prepare our First Friday Class Masses which offer the children a better understanding of the Word and the music in our Church. I have always incorporated a ‘hands on’ approach where the children write the Welcome, Prayer of the Faithful and and help select the music for their Masses. Our Annual Christmas Show features music and readings of the seasons of Advent and Christmas, both religious and secular. Classes from Jr. Pre-K to 8th grade perform, with Vocal taking a lead part. Additionally, Vocal makes an annual Christmas trip to the St. Joachim and St. Anne Nursing home in Coney Island. Each Spring, grades Pre-K through 6th and Vocal perform a salute to Broadway. Past shows have included the musical theater works of Rodgers and Hammerstein, Lerner and Loewe, George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Irving Berlin and Stephen Sondheim, to name a few.
My teaching philosophy is simple: There is joy in Music and there is joy in God’s word. When we use our gifts and talents to bring the good news of the gospels to others, then we are true servants who walk the talk, and offer the best possible example of Christ’s love.