The Blue Devils & United Sound
United Sound is a school-based instrumental music club for individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities and their typical peers. This peer mentoring program pairs students with special needs and their typical peers in band and orchestra. Serving over 2000 students at 85 schools around the country, United Sound helps teachers to bring meaningful inclusion to their music programs in a simple and sustainable way.
The program is run primarily by an individual school band or orchestra director and a school special education teacher with support from United Sound in the form of specialized training, financial support, and organizational resources. With assistance from student volunteers (Peer Mentors), New Musicians learn to play the instrument of their choice at a personally modified level. Learning first in lesson format and ultimately transitioning to rehearsals with recorded music, the New Musicians learn a piece of music that they will then perform live in concert, once per semester, with their Peer Mentors and a full instrumental support ensemble.
Students who participate in United Sound programs are learning to be musicians. Making music together is a powerful force for learning, growth, friendship and understanding. Music is a language that transcends disability and the relationships formed in this way will truly resonate for all children involved.
Dedicated to promoting social involvement through shared ensemble performance experience, United Sound joins students with and without disabilities to learn and perform in the band or orchestra together.
BDPA is excited to be leading a new partnership with United Sound. This DCI Summer tour will include performances with drum corps and United Sound. Blue Devils will be writing and arranging an original composition that will be learned by the United Sound New Musicians at their perspective schools and then performed alongside the corps at specific encore performances.
Performances and dates are as follows:
- San Bernardino, CA - Blue Devils Western Corps Connection
- Murfreesboro, TN - Blue Devils Masters of the Summer Music Games
June 30, 2019
July 26, 2019
These performance opportunities are incredibly special and important to the entire BDPA organization. We believe these collaborative opportunities will enrich the lives of the Blue Devils, The United Sound New Musicians, as well as those audiences who will experience these remarkable performances. Music is the ultimate connector. We love that we can share our BDWORLD with the United Sound Performers and look forward to many more performances and collaborations to come.
“This is what being a Blue Devil is all about,” remarks CEO, Shaun Gallant. “While many may know our organization as fans of the Blue Devils, all of BDPA is committed to youth development overall. This new partnership with United Sound is another example of how we can influence people with the power of the performing arts. We believe all the performers will make lifelong memories from these remarkable performances and experiences.”
“We are thrilled with this partnership!,” Remarks Executive Director Julie Duty. “With these performances, the Blue Devils are taking a lead role in demonstrating to fans and educators the importance of inclusion and music for every child.”