Pianos are available for student use in the Arts and Allied Health building’s practice rooms, but a less commonly known fact is college-owned instruments are available to students performing in the concert and jazz bands.
The college mainly owns less common instruments that students aren’t as likely to own themselves. Some of the instruments in the music department’s inventory include a bass, English horn, French horn, saxophone and bass clarinet as well as several percussion instruments.
The school doesn’t own common and in comparison, less expensive instruments such as clarinets, flutes, trumpets and guitars.
“The reason we buy instruments is because in high school there are institutionally purchased instruments,” Concert Band Director Jere Knudtsen said. “If a high school player graduates and comes here, chances are they played a school-owned instrument for that performance group. They’re able to continue in our performance group because we have instruments for them.”
The jazz band class was canceled this fall quarter because it didn’t meet the minimum student requirement. That may have been, in part, because some students lack instruments, but the lack of an instrument need not keep a student from playing music.
Instruments are not available to students who want one so that they can learn how to play. A student must first enroll in the concert or jazz band—both programs require at least high school proficiency in a student’s playing ability.
Once students enroll in a Pierce performance group, they can check out instruments for free for that quarter and it’s theirs to take home, practice with and perform with. However, they are liable for that instrument and expected to repair or replace it if anything happens to it.
“I always recommend that if students do check out an instrument that they put it on an insurance policy because they are so expensive,” Knudtsen said.
Students with a passion for music aren’t necessarily limited by a lack of instrument. To listen to concert band recordings and see the level of skill required to enroll, or for more information, go to www.pierce.ctc.edu
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