Issue 28

Sunday, May 13, 2018 - Issue 28

Wow, what a great week! Deborah's Place had a fabulous final performance, Seward students wowed Ravinia administration, and NBJ had one of the best single visits we've ever had! Not only that, but we have a ton of things to look forward to for next week!

Also, we recently sent out a schedule for each musician's blog topics for the 2018-19 edition of the Augmented Fifth! Very soon you'll hear more voices from Fifth House Ensemble than just mine! If that's not exciting, I don't know what is!



Teen Living Programs - Belfort House




5:00pm (Central)


Nancy B. Jefferson Residency - written by Herine Koschak

Our spring residency at Nancy B. Jefferson Alternative School launched a few weeks ago. NBJ is housed within the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center, and this is our seventh arts-integrated project with a classroom there, and also our very first opportunity to engage with young women in the facility. All students are placed into one of 7 residence centers and move throughout the building in smaller pods of 8 to 12 residents. They spend all of their waking hours with the individuals in their particular pod, which means that our classes are also grouped by the gender of the residents within a pod. Only about 10% of the residents are female, so having the chance to work with them is an exciting new opportunity!

We have the immense privilege to co-teach with Ms. Rizzo, an English teacher whose passion for poetry, creative thinking, and most of all, her students, was apparent to us 

within five minutes

 of meeting. Ms. Rizzo just received funding for ukuleles through

 - a request she placed prior to knowing about the 5HE residency! I asked her, admiringly, what prompted such a request. Her response: to build capacities for sensitivity and nuance in her students; to have them collaborate with one another, occupying roles as both teachers and students as they figured out how to play the ukes; and to have a new tool for creative expression. I believe her words were, "You can't be angry with a ukulele in your hands."

The students will be studying the poetry of Nate Marshall during this residency, focusing on interpretation while creating and performing graphic scores that evoke the underlying messages of the poems. We learned today that our project might have yet another amazing component which we may not be able to announce for a bit, so stay tuned! By any standard, this is a dream collaboration for us - a phenomenal teaching partner, access to great materials, and a huge, can-do spirit all the way around.


From the journal of Uncle Traveling Matt:

"This week was my time to shine! Our pianist, Katherine, was feeling a little pain in her hands so the only available sub in such short notice was yours truly! As you can see by the look on her face, I was doing an amazing job and am a natural talent (even if my hands aren't quite large enough to reach the octaves...... or seconds...). I'm looking forward to my performance debut which will certainly be happening very soon."


In honor of the fact that I haven't been able to get this song out of my head since I saw the movie.

TOP 10

  1. Thank you to all the women at Deborah's Place who participated in our residency program. Your projects were all wonderful! Also, super thank you to the amazing Deborah's Place staff for helping us make it happen!

  2. Grace, Elizandro, Deuce, and Parker had our first Music Can Tell a Story show as a part of MIC!

  3. Charlene, Herine, Katherine, and Danny had their last performance of Americana (+Bernstein) for the season. Congratulations on a successful run!

  4. Eric had a great final performance at Seward Elementary with Ravinia and as a result, we might have some exciting additional updates coming soon!

  5. Melissa and Parker had a really wonderful meeting with our team at Loyola CURL and are extremely excited about the future of our partnership!

  6. The young women in our NBJ residency were introduced to their ukuleles for the first time and it was a truly amazing experience to watch their faces light up when they got to play them. Huge thanks to our partner teacher, Ms. Rizzo for finding the funding for that part of our project!

  7. Dan somehow found time in his super busy schedule to meet with all of the Fifth House musicians for some awesome professional development. I'm developed!

  8. Special thanks to all of the Roosevelt University residency team for a successful meeting on Thursday that will get that project off on the right foot!

  9. Aubrey and Parker touched an octopus on Friday night!

  10. Charlene and Herine sound very good when playing in an Irish pub. Just saying.


TLP showcase,

NBJ keeps on rolling,

We're almost to June!


When Melissa brings a bunch of snacks...


"Verb" is a noun.


A simple but true tale.


How to top off a busy day!

Pita Inn

Skokie, IL


One of the many wonderful examples of graphic scores from our Deborah's Place residency!


Eric Heidbreder

Thanks for always lugging your computer around for us!