There are a few things that will always be needed in schools. Generally, this might be pens, pencils, rulers and other stationary. But musical essentials can be just as important. These are the most essential items for any school music class.
Regardless of your instrument, skill level or age, a music stand is essential for music. Used in classes and band, performances and rehearsal, a good number of music stands is important to have.
The classroom classic folding music stand is lightweight, portable and easy enough to store for large numbers. Though within years to come there will always be at least one that has had a hard life and ceases to function correctly, at least if my time at school taught me anything! These are usually very affordable, especially when ordering a high quantity for the classroom. I would recommend considering the Rocket Folding Music Stand. they’re a great price, come with a carrying bag and remain durable!
For things such as orchestra, band or performances, something with a bit more authority might be preferable. A heavy duty Orchestral stand would be ideal. The last thing you want in a performance is a folding music stand to not have been fixed tight enough resulting in sheets going everywhere. The Stagg Orchestral Music Stand is robust and has a large desk, perfect for heavier folders of music.
With this, it’s worth considering what you require. For some schools, 30 folding music stands will be perfect. Others might have more specific requirements, from music stand lights to music stand trolleys. Whatever you need, we will have something that should suit.
One thing that Woodwind players will always need is a suitable supply of reeds (short of the considerate Flute players who don’t require any external apparatus to play their instrument).
Every player will have their own preferred reed strength and brand, but as a school you will be focusing on accessibility and affordability in your instrument consumables. Having a good amount of 1.5 and 2.0 strength reeds for standard reed instruments is always advisable as most players will be comfortable with these. Rico reeds are, more often than not, a nice middle-ground brand that Woodwind players will rarely grumble at.
When it comes to double reed instruments, the reeds do get a bit more pricey. If you have Bassoon or Oboe players at your school then it might be advisable to have a spare reed or two on hand, but they aren’t something that you’ll be looking to buy en masse.
Spare strings are important, whether it be for traditional string instruments, or things such as guitars, ukuleles or mandolins. Strings can break at the most inopportune moment. Being prepared with a good stash of spares is always handy.
Plucked or picked string instruments are usually inexpensive when it comes to spare strings. Having good quality yet affordable options for the guitar, bass, ukulele and more. If you’re looking for more quality strings, as far as affordable, yet professional quality strings go, it’s hard to top a brand like D’addario. D’addario have just about every type of string you’ll need available.
Bowed instruments can get a bit more expensive. Though school instruments may not be strung with a Dominant set, there are some good options in the lower price brackets which will do the job perfectly.
Care and Maintenance
An important consumable when dealing with brass instruments, is Valve Oil. Most brass instruments are valve based so will require oiling every so often to ensure they don’t stick. Denis Wick offer a valve oil which includes PTFE particles which ensures very “slippery” lubrication of the valves. Where something like the Rocket Professional Valve Oil is a bit more traditional in its formula.
With this, the tuning slides may need greasing from time to time. Slide grease allows for smooth movement of the tuning slides. Trombone players might require something a bit more specific, such as the Slide-O-Mix Trombone Lubricant which is designed for use on the trombone slide.
Woodwind instruments will nearly all require some cork grease to fit together, or allow the mouthpiece to fit on without too much friction. Key and Rotary oil is always handy to have available also. Using this doesn’t have to be a frequent job, but it’s good to have some for when the time to oil your keys comes!
Bags and Cases
Keeping instruments, along with just about everything else, stored and protected is always important in a school. The best solution to this, is to keep cases, or at least bags, for each instrument.
Keyboard bags are available in multiple sizes and levels of durability. A thinner bag would be find for basic storage and transport, but if you’re dealing with an expensive digital piano you might want something more robust.
Guitars and other plucked string instruments are notorious for getting knocked over. A good padded bag will ensure that this can be prevented as much as possible. Hardcases are great, they’re very protective and often stack nicely. The biggest difference between a standard bag and a hardcase is the price.
Each school will have different needs and requirements, so not every “essential” will be essential. For advice or enquiries, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01283 535333 (opt 1.)