On any given day, walking through the halls of Mission Basilica School, you might observe students gaining competence in musical concepts and skills as they prepare for various religious services and educational presentations. You may hear first graders using instruments to enhance storytelling, flute-like sounds of the recorder coming from the fourth grade classroom, or the developing voices of our Eighth grade cantors as they prepare for Mass!
Our music program at Mission Basilica School is twofold. We instill the love of music in every child mainly via their own instrument – their voice. With singing as an aid, the children fully experience the basic elements of music to become musically literate. Students also gain instrumental experience learning to play an assortment of pitched and unpitched percussion instruments, the recorder, and the ukulele.
Throughout the year, there are several performances and special Masses for which we prepare our students, including our United Nations Day performance, the Christmas Program, St. Joseph’s Day Mass and May Crowning. We teach the children liturgical music, so they can fully participate in Mass while developing their voice and appreciation of the liturgy. Each class also celebrates special retreat days. Worship through singing strengthens their personal spirit-filled experience on those days.
When there is no performance or Mass to prepare for, we continue to develop the children’s musical path toward complete music literacy in accordance with the California State Standards for Music. Students gain the ability to read and understand music, and receive thorough ear-training in singing and instrumental experience via use of instruments, body movement, and hand motions.
For students who have extra interest in singing, we have the Mission Basilica School Choir, and an annual Spring Musical, produced by Mission Basilica School Youth Theatre in collaboration with Creative Kids Playhouse. This year, we will have two separate Spring Musicals, one for grades 1-5 and one for grades 6-8.