I thought I would share a bit about how I benefited from the Lenovo Tablet 2 last semester as a music student. While there are not quite as many apps in Windows 8 as there are for Apple devices, I was able to find several piano apps that allowed me to again be more mobile: I was no longer tied to a physical piano in order to complete some of my music homework and I cannot begin to describe how freeing this was. In addition, I found a free app called "Winterval Trainer 8" which plays a series of notes and allows you to quiz yourself on intervals and gives you tips for how to recognize them. This was a huge help in my Aural Skills class when we had to be able to identify and correctly write down a series of notes that are played for us.
I was able to download pdfs of music and play some songs off of that. I found that the screen size made it difficult to read a full piano score, however it was possible to read chord charts. I was not able to test this feature, but a friend of mine wound up scanning his music for choir and reading off of that so that he did not have to worry about turning pages or finding the correct page/book. This was very effective for him and I hope to do the same next semester.
I also wanted to expand a bit on my experience with the Surface Pro as a musician. While I am not a composition major, I do have to compose for various school projects. As a test for the Surface, I downloaded a free trial of Finale, the primary music notation program we use on campus, and proceeded to engrave the first page of a Mozart sonata. I tried various methods of entry (touch, stylus, mouse, and USB piano keyboard) and determined that the best way to enter music into the Surface was via a USB piano keyboard and a mouse. Entry was rather slow without a number pad, and the size of a screen only makes it realistic to enter music for 1-3 instruments, but the software worked and proved that the surface can be used as an effective idea capture tool. (Note, I only used the free Finale Software and did not install the Garritan Sound Bank.) It would be interesting to see a Finale App for a tablet so that I could split my screen and have on half be a piano keyboard for entry and the other half be the Finale software.
Last spring, I took a course in Event Planning, and for my final project, I had to coordinate either a real or imaginary event. I chose to coordinate The Master's College Spring Handbell Concert and learned a lot about planning an event from start to finish, managing a group of people, and creating a logical flow that engaged the audience. I will be posting several videos from that concert over the next few days. Video credit goes to Peter Johnson for spending several hours taking and editing the video.
The first song I wanted to share was actually the finale of the concert. It is an arrangement of "Take Me Out to the 'Bell' Game" in the style of a cheesy waltz, Pink Panther, and Magnificent 7. It was arranged by myself and a fellow student, Morgan Ruthard, as a final project for our Handbell Directing course. We really enjoyed adding a bit of drama to this song and I hope you enjoy it.