HONESDALE – The Northeast Pennsylvania Home School Band, directed by Raymond Stedenfeld, will be performing three shows in the area next week.
Stedenfeld has over 32 years of experience as a band director and teacher in Pennsylvania schools, most recently at the Western Wayne School District.
On Monday, Dec. 14 the band will be performing at the Ellen Memorial Health Care Center at 3 p.m.
On Thursday, Dec. 17 they will be performing at Bethany Village Assisted Living Center at 3 p.m.
On Saturday, Dec. 19 they will be performing at The Cooperage at 11 a.m. and again at noon.
The band currently has 10 students, but Stedenfeld is welcoming more.
“I've thought about the idea for a long time,” he said. “School districts don't let homeschool students take classes there.
“I've had a few students who went to homeschool and wanted to keep playing.”
Stedenfeld added music is very important to kids. Even after retiring from Western Wayne, he said he wasn't ready to quit teaching music.
He also teaches private lessons at his home and at the Scranton Music Academy. The Home School Band is also open to cyberschool students.
“I started reaching out to homeschool over a period of a few weeks and one got in touch,” Stedenfeld stated.
After being invited to do a presentation, he started working with several students from the Wayne County Homeschool in February.
Dave Figura, owner of Brass and Woodwind on Main Street, Honesdale, is also the rental representative for the band.
He also offered the use of the business's basement for the band to practice.
The band currently has a flute player, a violin player, a clarinet player, two saxophone players, three trumpet players, a drummer and a bass guitarist.
“It's a nice balance,” Stedenfeld said. “It's really exciting.”
He added the members come from around the area, including Honesdale, Pleasant Mount and Stroudsburg.
“Right now it's mostly been through word of mouth,” Stedenfeld said about getting the word out. “Homeschools are talking to other homeschools.”
Stedenfeld provides lessons for the Home School Band on a semester basis, which is 13 weeks of instruction. The cost is $195 per semester or $15 a week.
Students receive full band instruction for an hour as well as individual lessons for half an hour each week.
The next semester will begin in January and new members will have the opportunity to sign up.
Beginners can receive lessons and work up to being part of the full band.
“I'm willing to start other programs in Northeast Pennsylvania,” Stedenfeld said.
“If I can get some smaller groups that meet each week and then meet as a larger band, that would be great. I hope to do that.
“I'm willing to work with anyone who wants to work hard and make progress.”
Those interested in lessons or participating in the Home School Band can reach Stedenfeld at (570) 357-2680 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information visit www.pahomeschoolband.com or the band's Facebook page.