Venturing into the literal wild, new staff leave the safety of their monkey-less roads and tackle the great unknown we call Woodstock. The Woodstocker caught up with some of them to chronicle the first chapter of their adventures.
Mr Alex Heetland has begun his term as a choir and music theory teacher at Woodstock this year.
“I was actually here last spring. In 2017. It was easter chapel, I think, I came here because this place had a great reputation, so did the students, you know they’re hard working; and then I saw the job posting, that’s when I decided to come here.” said Mr Heetland on how he discovered Woodstock.
He was immediately captured and captivated by the nature that surrounds us. “When I got here this summer, the rains weren’t here for a couple days and it was really nice, and you could just see for just miles and miles from the porch of my house; and that really struck me; with the trees and the nature all around kind of struck me the most,” he said.
The one drastic change that most new students and staff have experienced is the constant uphill walks.
Mr. Heetland was no exception to being a victim of the exhausting walks, “Trying to walk around here and being breathless all the time was the second thing that really struck me, but I think I’m over that now,” saying that he’s accommodated to his routines involving the lengthy walks.
With the new schedules, many students are going to have to accomodate having music 4 times a week. Mr. Heetland is looking forward to building up the choir program especially this year. “With all these new changes that are happening around, choir is this kind of weird little place right now. We are trying to find a way for the students to fit it in to their schedules.”
Mr Heetland also says that music excites him, saying that, “I get to see people discovering how they connect to music in a classroom. During music theory classes and watching the students go ‘Oh cool!’ and that’s how music is built, that’s what really excites me.”
He also happens to be a huge fan of musicals. “I think Laura Osnes is the best but that’s not going to mean anything to anyone. Nobody is going to care for this either but my favorite soundtrack is Mohenjo Daro, I would love to do some of those songs with the choir.”
Mr Alex wishes to make choir a memorable experience for his students. “When students discover and grow in their voice, that excites me a lot.”
Photo by Mikko Aoki