Personal note from Glenn
Boys of AS Cabin #1, 1977
Hello again everyone,
The 3rd Interlochen Stick Workshop is upon us. For those of you who attended in
2009 and/or 2011, hopefully the experience left you looking forward to the next
one and that will mean a return trip in 2013. For those who haven't attended
before, let me give you a little background.
Interlochen serves as both an accredited high school for performing arts as well
as a summer arts camp for young music students. The school is well known all
over the world but especially to music students in the state of Michigan. When
I was a young student, the opportunity to attend the summer arts camp was
something we spent the school year striving for. As a freshman in high school,
our local music program offered partial scholarships for students who qualified
to attend the camp. I was fortunate enough to be one of those students and in
1977, I made my first of three summer trips north to the Interlochen campus.
The environment was like no other place I had been or have been to since. The
student body was made up of kids from all over the world. We immersed in music.
The buglers blew reveille at the crack of dawn every day and after our breakfast
on the beautiful shores of Duck Lake, we were off to rehearsals. We had two full
ensemble rehearsals a day as well as sectional rehearsals and private lessons.
We took breaks from the schedule in the afternoon for rest and physical
activities (usually soccer) and also for our own practice time. In the evening,
we either attended concerts or social gatherings. The concerts ranged from
campus ensembles to national touring acts.
In all of my years since then, I have always looked back at my summers at
Interlochen as some of the greatest musical experiences of my life. As an adult,
I've frequently stopped by the campus when I've traveled to northern Michigan
just to visit and to this day, I still get goosebumps as soon as I get out of
In more recent years, Interlochen started their summer adult programs and as an
alumnus, I started receiving the mailers every year. I kept threatening to dust
off my guitar or horn and attend when, during a visit in 2008, it hit me like a
ton of bricks ... "we should have a Stick seminar HERE!"
My original intention was to look into renting campus space and holding our
usual event. Then I met Matt Wiliford who heads up the College of Creative Arts.
Matt was very enthusiastic about the Stick and suggested that we add a Stick
workshop to their official adult curriculum. The result of that chance meeting
was the 2009 Interlochen Stick Workshop. That event featured Emmett Chapman and
Greg Howard as teachers and took place in parallel with the annual Guitar
Festival and Workshop. For three days, 23 Stick players shared the campus with
about 50 guitar players and the result was an event like nothing we'd ever had
before. Emmett described the campus as "a Brigadoon"
. At the conclusion
of the successful 2009 event, Matt and I decided to make it a biennial event.
In 2011, we held the second workshop. This one featured teachers Greg Howard and
Bob Culbertson. By this time, the College of Creative Arts had managed to get
their own building for their weekend workshops. This meant they could hold
workshops during the summer arts camp. So unlike 2009, the students of the 2011
workshop shared the campus with 2500 of the finest young music students in the
world. No matter where you went, music was playing. Ensembles rehearsed all day.
Individuals practiced indoors and out all over campus. The whole scene was
incredibly inspirational. During his live performance, Bob Culbertson referred
to Interlochen as "Hogwartz for musicians"
Now in 2013, the latest event will feature classes from Bob Culbertson, Steve
Adelson and myself. The workshop will again be held in the heart of the summer
arts camp season which means music of all genres everywhere at all times of the
day. Weather permitting, we might even fit in that beach fire I've been promising
To the Stick players, students and enthusiasts I've come to know over the years.
I realize that the Interlochen events ask for a little more money and committment
than the events we've held in Ann Arbor. But there has always been an incredible
vibe just walking around the Interlochen Campus and, as previous attendees can
attest, that vibe is still alive and well today. These workshops are one of a
kind events and I'm convinced that once you get settled, spend time on the campus
and soak up the environment, you'll love it and will want to come back and do it
So please come join us in July. You might not want to go home afterward.