Public Announcements

University of Colorado Boulder Aerosol Study

Apr. 26, 2021

Latest Update and Developments from the University of Colorado Boulder-Performing Arts Aerosol Study-April 21, 2021

There have been some exciting new developments in the Aerosol Study. Explore all of the links here.

  • Covid-19 Mitigation Strategies for Music Video
  • Scientific Study Prepress Paper
    • A scientific preprint of the research paper: "Measurements and Simulations of Aerosol Released while Singing and Playing Wind Instruments" based off the aerosol study is now available for public consumption as it is peer reviewed for publication in a scientific journal.
  • Wall Street Journal Article with Visuals and Animations
    • An article written based off the results and recommendations from the aerosol study with quotes, links, visuals and animations.
  • Call to Submit Best Practices to the U.S. DOE
    • The U.S. Department of Education has put out a call for real-life examples of successful back-to-school risk management practices for pre-k through college classrooms that will then be available to teachers and administrators in a clearinghouse as they plan to return to in-person learning.


Updated Statement From the Performing Arts Aerosol Study - University of Colorado Boulder - March 19, 2021

Please, read this announcement following the new CDC recommendations about physical distancing. It will give you guidance about how to manage New Horizons group practices.
NHIMA recommends maximum precautions and adherence to the recommendations by local authorities and public health regulators to prevent spread of the corona virus. Please, protect your own health and that of others around you. 

The Colorado Boulder University 'Performing Arts Aerosol Study' has now published a third report. As you know, NHIMA supports this study and believes that the recommendations are very important for our musical groups. Please, review the updated results of the study.
Click Here for the Full Article

This is a question that a number of performing arts organization have decided to study. Specifically, the question has to do with the “aerosol rates” produced by people playing instruments, singing, acting, etc., and how quickly aerosolized particles, like the covid-19 virus, can accumulate in a closed space like a rehearsal hall or classroom. By rehearsing together, are we creating a virtual cloud of potentially dangerous particles? Is the risk so small that it shouldn’t affect our rehearsing together? Or something in between?

Researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder are determined to find out with a new study entitled, Aerosol Generation from Playing Band Instruments and Risk of Infectious Disease Transmission. The study will take place during the 2020 summer months with availability of (preliminary) results towards the new academic 2020/2021year.

The New Horizons International Music Association (NHIMA) believes this study will provide our association with much needed information about the safety of making music in ensembles such as ours, and has decided to financially support the research study. If you are interested in supporting this initiative, click the link below for further information.

Contributed by Irene Cohen, NHIMA President


Nov. 10, 2020

Researchers from the University of Minnesota conducted a series of experiments with the Minnesota Orchestra wind and brass players this past summer to help us determine how to most safely bring musicians together onstage. Take a look at what they learned, and how these findings may be useful to musicians everywhere.

University of Minnesota Video

Johns Hopkins University Peabody Institute offers guidance for applied instruction

Sep. 9, 2020

This Return to Campus Guide contains recommended health and safety protocols to put in place when Johns Hopkins University begins its gradual, multi-phase resumption of on-campus activities. It is intended to apply to all members of our Peabody community—Johns Hopkins affiliates (faculty, staff, students, post-doctoral fellows, and trainees), as well as contractors, vendors, visitors and guests—while on campus or in university facilities. We anticipate that these guidelines will evolve as the changing severity of the pandemic and our ability to respond to it allow us to move through the phases of our return-to-campus framework, subject to state and local regulations and our own public health assessment. The guidelines will be updated with community input in later phases of our response as we are able to increase the density and level of activity on campus.

For the full report, please CLICK HERE

Contributed by Roy Ernst, Ph. D., L. L. D.
New Horizons Music, Founder and Advisor to the Board of Directors
Professor Emeritus, Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester

I Got the Stay at Home Blues, Real Bad

Sep. 9, 2020

In my opinion, the 12-bar blues are the most important contribution from America to the world of music. Many songs that are not called blues are based on the 12-bar blues and they are heard all around the world. The chapter on Harmonic Improvisation in “Blues 2” is all about the blues because that’s the best first step in learning harmonic improvisation.

I got the stay at home blues . . . real bad.
I got the stay at home blues . . . so, so bad.
Miss my friends, nothin’ to do, but stay at home.
(by Roy Ernst)

You can do that! But first I want you read about the blues and listen to some blues. If you like your blues lyrics, send them to me at [email protected]. I will take the first 20 I get, paste them into one document and send them out to our members. Fame could be yours!

Check out this link

Great Job on Lyrics! Here is our Collection so Far. Click Here

Contributed by Roy Ernst, PhD LLD, Founder, New Horizons Music

Our Founder’s Challenge: This is a Good Time to Learn a Song

Sep. 9, 2020

With all of our social distancing, isolation, and missing our group practices, this is a good time to learn a song. I know—you know lots of songs. This is very different. I propose that you learn just one song that you can play from memory, and that you play it with a very high level of expression and creativity.

Pick a song that you really like, something like Amazing Grace, Summertime, Over the Rainbow, or Georgia. Find notation for it or learn it by ear. Play it many times until you can play it without notation.

Playing with accompaniment is a very good thing and you should do it as much as you can, but for now, play without accompaniment. An accompaniment will restrict you. This is just about you, your song, and total expressive freedom.

Now try the following:

  • Add some notes to it to ornament it a little.

  • Change the rhythm a little.

  • Play phrases and leave silence at the end of the phrase.

  • Taper the phrase endings to silence.

  • Try leaving a lot of silence at the end of phrases.

  • Make subtle dynamic changes.

  • Play with your best tone.

  • Play with feeling.

  • Play the song as many different ways as you can.

Find as many solo recording of your song as you can and listen to them many times. Try to find some good ideas to bring to your performance of your song. Listen to some Sinatra and notice how much silence he uses.

Play your song two or three times every time you practice, always trying to be more expressive and creative. Do this at least for months, maybe for years. It’s okay to add a song or change to a different song if you feel the need, but use the same process. Your playing will reach new levels of expression and creativity.

David Fry, a fabulous New Horizons director and professional saxophonist from South Carolina is a good example of what I propose. I’ve taught at many music camps with David over the years. At every camp I’ve heard David play Georgia, always different and beautiful every time. When he plays, I sense that he is in his own world with Georgia, finding new ways to play it beautifully. I think of Georgia as David’s song.

My song? I actually have two that I have been playing for years: Summertime and Over the Rainbow. I can’t begin to imagine the number of times I have played them.

Contributed by Roy Ernst, PhD, LLD

Dr. Roy Ernst, Founder of New Horizons International Music Assocciation
Founder of New Horizons Music

Activities for New Horizons Members

Sep. 9, 2020

NHIMA is suggesting some fun activities during these trying times. We are welcoming ideas that can be shared with your New Horizons colleagues in the US, Canada and the rest of the world. Let us stay connected musically – NHIMA will assist and support your ideas. If you have questions or ideas, please send them to Irene Cohen, President of NHIMA:

  • Go to our Home Page

  • Click on: Contact Us

  • Click on Ask the President.

If you are reading this article now, you can just CLICK HERE to contact the President.

This is a great example of staying connected musically
Tierney McLean is the trumpet mentor for the New Horizons Rochester, NY Concert Band and Symphonic Band and she directs the New Horizons Antique Brass Ensemble in Rochester. She has made a video clip with some basic music theory about major scales. It is 13 minutes long and well worth watching. At the end she suggests to email her- which was just meant for her Rochester groups. So, we have not included her email address in this post.

Please, watch:

Contributed by Irene Cohen, NHIMA President

Band from London, Canada Tours Ireland

Sep. 9, 2020

London, Ontario’s New Horizons Band made a titanic splash with its performances from its eighth trip to Europe, this time for music lovers in Belfast, Galway and Dublin.

Seventy members of Western University’s Don Wright Faculty of Music New Horizons Band travelled to Northern Ireland and Ireland from July 2 to 12 to perform five free concerts, including one at the Titanic Museum in Belfast.

And the Titanic, which sank on its maiden voyage in 1912, also played a part in some of the band’s musical selections. Among the tunes performed were Proprior Deo, Nearer My God to Thee, The Barber of Seville and Songe D’Automne, which were all part of the repertoire of the band that played on the Titanic’s ill-fated trip. The Titanic was built in the shipyards of Belfast.

“It seemed fitting that we played these songs as part of our concerts because of that Belfast connection, said Mark Enns, one of the band’s two conductors. “We’ve also had a few Irish tunes and other pop and movie theme favorites that made for an exciting and interesting 10 days,” added Mary Gillard, the band’s other conductor.

In preparation for this trip, band members rehearsed since early May and played two free concerts in the London area to give audiences a first listen to the repertoire.

The New Horizons Band is open to adult musicians of any skill level, including absolute beginners, but those playing in the European concerts tend to have five or more years of musical experience. Several band members are Western University employees or alumni who have toured different parts of Europe in the previous visits.

The London band program, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, allows adults to learn music and play in a concert band with other like-minded people. The London NHB was the first one in Canada and is among the largest in existence.

Contributed by Matt Kearney

Western New York New Horizons Band Opens for Buffalo Philharmonic

Sep. 9, 2020

This was no humdrum trip, this bus ride to Buffalo on a cloudy Sunday afternoon. It was, instead, one of the biggest occasions in the 15-year history of the New Horizons Band of Western New York.

It was a chance, as someone said, “to open for the Buffalo Philharmonic,” to play three numbers before guests in the Mary Seton Room of Kleinhans Music Hall on Symphony Circle.

The performance, Oct. 6, under the direction of Dr. Katherine M. Levy, professor of music at Fredonia State University, was part of the Philharmonic’s Community Spotlight series, which for 26 years has welcomed area musical organizations to perform prior to Philharmonic concerts.

The 62-member New Horizons Band played Sousa’s “Hail to the Spirit of Liberty,” “The Gift of Friendship” by Benjamin Yeo, and “Legends and Heroes” a folk suite by Pierre La Plante.
WNY band members get ready for their
Oct. 6, 2019 performance in Buffalo.

“This was an amazing honor, and our band did a great job. Playing music has been a critically important activity for me since I retired after almost 40 years teaching.”–Mary Margaret Fogarty of Fredonia, NY, flute.

“The opportunity to play at Kleinhans meant that we had to work extra hard on our musicianship in order to put on a good show.” — Frank Needham of Angola, NY, former airlines pilot and an original member of the Western New York band, baritone sax, .

Indeed, rehearsals leading up to the performance took on a more intense flavor, a sense of urgency. In the end, however, one of New Horizons’ paramount principles – play what you can and play your best – prevailed.

“The ears coming into the room at Kleinhans were those who wanted to hear a polished performance,” Levy said.

And still, Levy said, she felt more pressure on managing the 65-minute trip than on the music. The tasks of arranging transport, ensuring safety, making sure all band members had proper access to vehicles and buildings, tickets, seating, and all the details of such a performance weighed heavily. Band members Janet and David Stout, ushers at Kleinhans, helped immensely with liaison and ticket issues, Levy said.

By the time the band wrapped up its three-piece program, the Mary Seaton room was nearly full of spectators, many drawn in by the music as they arrived for the Philharmonic’s program. As the last note of “Legends and Heroes” sounded, the audience rose in applause.

What followed was one of the highlights of the trip for Levy. “I felt the kind of exuberance that band members feel after a good performance,” she said. That feeling carried over in posts on social media and in personal contact with band members following the return to Fredonia.

“I always enjoy performing for Kate. She works so hard to wring out the best performance we have in us. I considered it an honor to be asked to play at Kleinhans, so was very happy to do so.” — Jim Wilmoth, a former mail carrier and self-described weekend farmer, trombone.
Dr. Katherine M. Levy,
director of the New Horizons
Western New York Band

Levy cautioned that while the band was well-received in Buffalo, the event may not become an annual one. New Horizons Band The band must pay its own way via motor coach to Buffalo, rent truck transportation for percussion and other large instruments, and purchase Philharmonic tickets for guests. Forty non-band members joined the group for the day, which included a brilliant performance by violinist James Ehnes and the Philharmonic, conducted by JoAnn Falletta.

Levy used the occasion to issue a gentle challenge to other symphonies and orchestras across the country. She urged similar partnership between New Horizon groups and symphonies to showcase local talent.

And she spoke of the shot in the arm such an event gives band members themselves.

“There has to be something refreshing. There needs to be this constant sense of forward motion.”

Mind. Music. Magic. – WMNHME in the AARP

Sep. 9, 2020

Recently, West Michigan New Horizons Music Ensembles was featured in an article on the website. Performing at a benefit concert for the Greater Michigan chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, the West Michigan Ransom Street Big Band played music that could be beneficial to those suffering from Alzheimer’s or Dementia.

Click here to read the full article.