The value of teaching music

View from the back of the Agincourt Collegiate band … with music teacher John Rutherford conducting. (May 1967)

Most of the time I sat among the back seats in the rehearsal room. But that’s OK. As long as I kept one eye on the music charts in front of me and the other down front where conductor John Rutherford stood, I knew I’d stay in step with the rest of the group. I just had to wait for Mr. Rutherford’s downbeat and I was part of the performance. And that meant a lot to me. He’d often begin the rehearsal with the same words of encouragement.

“OK,” Rutherford would say. “Let’s make a little magic.”

A meeting here tonight

Panel discussion regarding the Stratford school board decision not to allow the son of Art Boon (foreground) join him in Holland.
Panel discussion regarding the Stratford school board decision not to allow the son of Art Boon (foreground) join him in Holland.

Up until last April, the council chamber in one Quebec community would generally fill with reporters and interested members of the public. When it was time to commence the town of Saguenay’s business, in would flow the members of council to take their spots. Then, before a single piece of business was addressed that day, someone would recite these words:

“O God, eternal and almighty, from Whom all power and wisdom flow, we are assembled here in Your presence to ensure the good of our city and its prosperity…”