NEWTON, NJ - For the past eight months, five and six-year-old children have been gathering at Christ Church Newton to participate in the Musikgarten program offered by the Children’s Chorus of Sussex County.  Classes are offered on Wednesdays, from 4:30 until 5:20 p.m. Parents participate in the last ten minutes of each class.  The program is directed by professional pianist and early childhood music and movement specialist Diana Greene.

Musikgarten is an early childhood music and movement program which teaches the fundamentals of music through singing, movement and guided listening.  Simple instruments are incorporated into each lesson.  “The Musikgarten program provides a foundation for children to grow musically as well as cognitively, emotionally and socially,” notes Greene.  “The curricula teaches active listening, develops balance, control and coordination, encourages social interaction and stimulates the imagination.  It is a developmentally appropriate activity for young children, and also a great start for children who may wish to progress into choral and instrumental programs."

Diana Greene, was recently elected First Vice-President/ President-Elect of the Early Childhood Music & Movement Association at their 2014 biennial convention.   ECMMA seeks to promote the best practices in all areas of early childhood music and movement and supports early childhood music and movement practitioners with resources, advocacy, professional development, and collaboration opportunities.   Ms. Greene holds Level 2 certification from ECMMA and is a licensed and certified Musikgarten instructor. 

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The Musikgarten program is the latest addition to The Children’s Chorus of Sussex County, a comprehensive choral music program which serves school-age children in and around Sussex County, New Jersey. 

Three separate ensembles perform under the umbrella of the Children’s Chorus of Sussex County:  Bel Canto for beginning singers in grades one to four, Bella Voce for intermediate singers in grades five thorugh eight, and Concert Choir for advanced singers in grades seven through 12. 

Auditions are not required for the Musikgarten program, although they are required for participation in the three choirs.  All rehearsals for the Children’s Chorus of Sussex County, as well as the Musikgarten program for children in kindergarten and first grade, take place at Christ Church, 62 Main Street in Newton. 

To register a child for the Musikgarten program, or to schedule an audition for the 2015-16 season of the Children’s Chorus of Sussex County, visit www.ccscsings.org.