What’s Working: Clinton Wind Ensemble

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CLINTON, Miss. (WJTV) – From French Horns to Bassoons, getting the entire Clinton Wind Ensemble in tune has gotten a “little” easier with the help of technology.

The teens are using an app called Tonal Energy and the Arrows are hitting all right notes.

Between falling flat and sounding sharp, sits the rarified air of perfect pitch.

Achieving that sound requires a very good ear.

It turns out that apps can help, too.

The entire Clinton Wind Ensemble can see how they sound on a large screen that hangs in the band room.

Kevin Welborn is the Director of Bands at Clinton High School.

He says, “I feel like it teaches them more because it involves them looking at the tuner, as opposed to me looking at the tuner and telling them what’s happening.”

Sophomore Gina Hunsinger plays the euphonium. She adds, “Really helps us to understand our own ears, with other people, and understand how we play our instrument, so we can play the music better.”

The tech can even work on the most complex of instruments.

Sophomore Cole Tucker plays the French Horn. He says, “Well because the French Horn has a lot of different slides and stuff, it’s very hard to tune, but the program definitely helps. It’s easier to tune in general and makes it sound better.”

The Clinton Band has filled trophy cases with its awards.

The current edition is about 170 members strong.

The app can be downloaded to a smartphone for a small fee, $3.00 or $5.00.

Gina Hunsinger says, “I use it every time I practice.”

When things are sounding as they should, a green smiley face appears in the middle of the screen.

WJTV’s Andrew Harrison asked Cole Tucker, “Do you like it when you see the green smiley face?”

Cole answered, “Absolutely, it makes me feel good about myself.”

And that’s something we can all smile about.

The apps started popping up about five or six years ago, Clinton started using it this year.

Tonal Energy also helps the students make the proper adjustments during a performance to maintain the proper pitch.

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