Former Music School Student Composes in Vienna

Happy Monday! We hope you had an enjoyable weekend! Here’s a great news piece to start off your week. The film below was composed and animated by former student of Geoff Barker, Megan Van Den Maagdenberg. She is now a student at Vienna Music Institute, and she was invited for a wonderful opportunity to compose music based on the life of Viennese artist Heinz Frank.

Heinz Franks’s daughter, Lilli Breuer, invited some composers to write music based on Frank’s apartment, life and artwork as a musical installment to the museum. Megan was able to go in and see the apartment, take photos, make notes, and then compile all the information. After Frank died, they found about four boxes of additional art called Tagebuchs (day books) that had never been seen before. He did one painting per day, every day, for years. The artwork in the film below were copies of some of the original day books that Lilli scanned to Megan to use for her creative endeavors.

This is such an exciting project and we are so proud of Megan in all of her efforts. It is truly an exceptional example of digging into yourself and working on something that acknowledges music and the arts, bringing joy and happiness for everyone who watches.


Thank you, Megan, for sharing this with us! We are so grateful! Congratulations on this remarkable project. Click on the link to watch

Megan Van Den Maagdenberg's composition and artwork on the life of Heinz Frank
Megan Van Den Maagdenberg’s composition and artwork on the life of Heinz Frank

Generous Donation

Thank you so much to Sue Matovich and Imant Raminsh, volunteers at the Book Warehouse located in the Alpine Centre on Kal Lake Road, for a very generous donation to the Music School. We are so grateful to be able to work together to help strengthen our community. If you’re in need of a great used book, please consider visiting their store. They have a great selection and very friendly volunteers to help you find what you’re looking for!

Imant Raminsh handing a cheque to VCMS President Lori Johnson
Imant Raminsh handing a cheque to VCMS President Lori Johnson

Violin Spots Available

Violin lessons available at VCMS

There are a few spots open for violin students! If you know of a future musician who would love to learn in the Suzuki violin program, please reach out to Ms. Natalie Kober. Lessons start at one half hour each week, with a group lesson opportunity once we have groups up and running again.

The Suzuki Method

The Suzuki method applies the basic principles of language acquisition to the learning of music, and is called the mother-tongue approach. The ideas of parent responsibility, loving encouragement, constant repetition, etc., are some of the special features of the Suzuki approach.

Parent Involvement

As when a child learns to talk, parents are involved in the musical learning of their child. They attend lessons with the child and serve as “home teachers” during the week. One parent often learns to play before the child, so that they understand what the child is expected to do. Parents work with the teacher to create an enjoyable learning environment.

Expanded meaning of ‘parent’ to include any caregiver, guardian, grandparent, etc who is supporting the child in the learning process.

Early Beginning

The early years are crucial for developing mental processes and muscle coordination. Listening to music should begin at birth; formal training may begin at age three or four, but it is never too late to begin.


Children learn words after hearing them spoken hundreds of times by others. Listening to music every day is important, especially listening to pieces in the Suzuki repertoire so the child knows them immediately.


Constant repetition is essential in learning to play an instrument. Children do not learn a word or piece of music and then discard it. They add it to their vocabulary or repertoire, gradually using it in new and more sophisticated ways.

Music for January

If you’re looking to cheer yourself up during the long month of January, why not check out our Vernon Community Music School’s YouTube page! There is something for everyone and is guaranteed to put a smile on your face – including our virtual Christmas concerts!


Thank you to Community Foundation North Okanagan for their continued support for this project and the arts community.