In July 2022, we ran this article of Carol Pitman’s reflection on her career. Carol passed away this month.
“The ultimate source of spiritual and transcendental experiences
Teaching music has resulted in many unspoken rewards for me. However, I always kept in the back of my mind, what a L.A. teacher once wrote in the L.A. Times. She said, “Get your lovin’ somewhere else!”
In my early years, I gave young children piano lessons at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston where I was part of the Young People’s faculty. Many teaching skills needed to be developed such as choosing music suitable to their age and developmental stage. At the same time, I was studying music education at a local university.
My favorite school district was in Long Beach, California where they had a very well developed music program, because of the consultants in the music department who had an outstanding vision of what a school music program could be. I was a traveling vocal music teacher, visiting classrooms in K-6.
Classroom music was important, but it was in the glee clubs that selected students learned the value of hard work as they prepared 2 and 3 part songs for festivals and PTA programs. They learned the importance of perseverance and cooperation in achieving a higher musical goal. Every spring, the L.A. philharmonic performed for 5th and 6th graders. These classes were given special listening lessons to prepare them for the concert experience. Important listening skills were developed.
My volunteer work began when I moved to Kirkland in 1991. I discovered our new church and began to participate in the choir. The group needed a soprano so I sang with them until they needed an accompanist. Later on, I served on the music committee when the church was ready to hire a choir director and accompanist. I also helped the search committee discover our beautiful grand piano.
To me, a life in music reflects the ultimate source of spiritual and transcendental experiences. I feel much gratitude for having made a small contribution this source. Perhaps not very practical, but ESSENTIAL.” – Carol Pitman