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A Musical Life

A Musical Life: Lauren Hirsch


Lauren Hirsch is a percussionist and music educator in the Wichita area. She serves as the Executive Director of the Organization of American Kodaly Educators. Hirsch is also known for her work with the band Sun and Stone.

“The Kodaly organization is something I’ve been involved with here on a local level as long as I’ve been teaching. Our goal is to expand the way that music is taught so that every human in America and then throughout the world considers themselves to be a literate musician and can make music with anyone.

Some people really value the aural skills that they bring to making music and don’t really worry about the reading side. I think that’s a fine way to be a musician. But I think to share music, notation is a wonderful way. If you want to share your thoughts or communicate them over time you need to write it down.

Zoltan Kodaly, a Hungarian ethnomusicologist, composer and teacher, says, ‘We should read music in the same way an educated adult will read a book: In silence but imagining the sound.’ If you just picture people able to read a score with multiple parts of music that way, where you can look at it and see the relationships and understand and hear it in your mind … Is that necessary to be a great musician? No. But imagine if you could.”