Listen on –
This weeks episode of the podcast is a wonderful interview with my former high school band director Terry Rush. He was the band director at Pius X, Lincoln High (when I was with him), Lincoln Southwest, and has done an incredible amount of clinics and guest teaching all around the state of Nebraska.
This episode was really fun for me to do. To get to come back after all these years and get to ask a person I have a great deal of respect for some questions that are important to me now is an opportunity that I greatly cherish. Here are some take away’s from my time with Mr. Rush (he says I can call him Terry, but it’s so weird)
Music Teachers Are Special
We spoke for quite awhile about how the relationship between a music teacher and a student is very different than the rest of a students’ education. While they have different teachers each year for most of their time in school, they will see their music teachers each day for 3-4 years.
It’s very clear Mr. Rush doesn’t take the responsibility placed on him as an educator lightly. He knows part of his job is to teach music, but another huge part is to encourage each student to grow into who they are to become. Spending years with each student provides the opportunity to get to know their strengths and weaknesses, allowing the music teacher to play a major role in their lives.
Learning What Not To Do
Mr. Rush spoke about how much of his life’s philosphy was shaped not only by some important positive role models, but he learned a lot from negative role models as well. He discusses how a lack of passion and involvement from music teachers in his early life instilled the passion he now has for music education. He wanted to be a part of the younger generation receiving instruction that he didn’t get.
Stand For Something
Something I’ve noticed from my time in high school and beyond, one of Mr. Rush’s strongest attritubes is his conviction. He stands up for what he believes in, and will vocally support the causes that ring most true. As a music student, we could sense this, and we knew we had an advocate. I’m a big believer that his vulnerability and conviction play a big role in the trust he was able to build with his students.
Mr. Rush has had such a huge impact in the lives of so many people, including me. I hope this episode can be an encouragement to all people, but especially younger band directors. The difference you can make is real, and Mr. Rush is evidence that it is worth the time and effort invested in these young students.
Here’s a Spotify playlist of music Mr. Rush likes to listen to:
Make sure to share this episode with family and friends that would enjoy it!
Until next time,