Shows

ATS Classroom Concert Series

The arts have been put on the back burner in most school curriculums. With ever dwindling resources, students are truly fortunate if they get the exposure needed to develop an appreciation for the arts. Especially with regard to music, most children are exposed to the insipid pop genres broadcast on commercial radio, and network and cable television, rather than the rich and diverse spectrum of music and art that actually exists today.
We believe that our 40 + year career as performing songwriters – on both mainstream and grass roots levels – is a relevant and unique teaching tool.

The Classroom Concert Series is an intimate edu-tainment event for all school-age children. We share aspects of our career, including the business of music and the historical interconnections of American popular music. We also demonstrate basic songwriting and performing techniques, intermingled with extensive Q & A sessions and live, in classroom performances.
Aztec Two-Step is honored to present this edu-tainment program to help promote the arts to school-age children.

Objectives

We offer a child and curriculum-friendly presentation during which we:

  • Suggest the short and long-term benefits of playing a musical instrument:  stay in school, study, and PRACTICE!
  • Discuss songwriting techniques for our many songs that are appropriate for kids of all ages, such as: Rabbit in the Moon, The Ballad of Humpty Dumpty & Cinderella, On the Road, Bakin', Living in America, Dance, Dancers All, Shanty Town, Johnny's an Angel, Days of Horses, Dad Came Home
  • Point out the origins and inspiration for the previously noted songs to help children connect with our lyrics - or inspire them to write their own!
  • Provide a synopsis of legendary American songwriters and poets, including Stephen Foster, Irving Berlin, Woody Guthrie, Allen Ginsberg, and Bob Dylan.
  • Encourage children to realize that their personal experiences are rich resources for expressing their creativity in words, music, fine art, dance, etc.
  • Note that creative inspirations can also be drawn from many diverse sources, not just personal experience.
  • Reference performing techniques and touch on D.I.Y. (do it yourself) CD recording, manufacturing and website promotions, for students with career aspirations in music.
  • Present the ways our partnership enabled us to evolve and grow both individually and as a band.
  • Emphasize the rewards of collaboration and cooperation, in and out of the arts. Teamwork!
  • Mention how effort applied to ambition has brought us rewarding moments, such as performing with Bruce Springsteen, Bill Cosby and The Beach Boys!

Testimonials

“Aztec Two-Step’s performance at the Elizabeth Shelton School was both inspirational and entertaining to the children. Between songs, they spoke candidly about creativity and self-expression through songwriting and music. Neal and Rex encouraged the children to ask questions which they answered with honesty, patience and humor. It was a testament to their music when the children spontaneously clapped along to their songs and gathered around at the end of their performance to ask additional questions.”

Nicki Kirk & Helen Smith
Cultural Arts Committee
Elizabeth Shelton School
Shelton, CT

“Your school program was entertaining, informative, accessible and fun for all. Your musicianship and professionalism paired flawlessly with your easy rapport with the children. I think you have much to offer in this field. Again, bravo, and thanks!”

Cheryl O’Brien
PTO/PTA
Shelton, CT

“In this age of instant and fleeting stardom, you showed my students what it means to be truly talented artists who have stood the test of time. I know that they were not only entertained by your discussions and performances, but “enlightened” (which is the buzz word flying through my classroom) and forever changed – especially those students who had preconceived notions about “getting it all" without giving it all. To them you are "real” and I know the impressions you made in my classroom will last a lifetime. Thank you for touching their creative side. We truly enjoyed your time here and can't wait for the next full moon to appear - we will be looking for that rabbit!”

Julie Caruso
Vocal Music Director
Durgee Junior High School
Baldwinsville, NY


Rex's Classroom Concert Series

Classroom Concerts are attention-grabbing “edu-tainment” programs for all school-age children. Rex Fowler, lead singer and principal songwriter of the renowned folk/rock duo Aztec Two-Step, offers a variety of workshops created to inspire kids’ interest in the arts. Innovative topics such as Fractured Fairytales & Folk Songs, Songs from the Stratosphere, and A History of American Songsmiths serve as fun educational forays into enchanted lands of learning. By intermingling elements of science, folklore, poetry and song with historical interconnections, Rex aims at instilling a greater appreciation for the arts in young people so they can ultimately express and explore their own unique creativity.

Fractured Fairytales & Folk Songs (Grades K-5)

Fractured Fairytales & Folk Songs is designed to introduce children to the playful side of words through storytelling and song. Though thoroughly entertaining, the greater intention here is to open up and expand the whimsical side of each child’s unique imagination. Rex juxtaposes a cappella style camp songs (There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly/The Harlem Goat) and curriculum-appropriate original songs (The Ballad of Humpty Dumpty & Cinderella/Calico Man), with masterful songwriters such as Stephen Foster (Oh! Susanna), Woody Guthrie (The Car Song), John Lennon & Paul McCartney (All Together Now), Paul Simon (Punky’s Dilemma), Neil Young (I Am A Child), Kenny Loggins (House At Pooh Corner) and many others. This highly energetic and interactive performance, peppered throughout with props, hand clapping and sing-a-longs, is sure to sound a positive chord with young school-age children.

Songs from the Stratosphere (Grades 4-8)

The Songs from the Stratosphere program features selected songs that connect to basic science studies. Rex borrows Simon & Garfunkel’s Cloudy and uses many of his own catchy originals such as Cosmos Lady, Stargazers, Rabbit In The Moon, and The Rain Song to enhance and teach science related topics. Starting with the elements closest to earth, these songs will act as a conduit by introducing a range of subjects beginning with atmospheric layering - then moving upward and outward to cloud structures, rain, moon cycles, the solar system, stars and finally, the cosmos. Additionally, this program offers an introduction to two pioneers of science and astronomy; Copernicus and Galileo. Rex will utilize curriculum related resources such as visual props and charts that relate to each science topic. Besides basic science skills, students learn that creative inspirations can be drawn from many diverse sources, not just personal experiences.

A History of American Songsmiths (Grades K-12)

Rex Fowler is spiritually descended from a long line of American songsmiths. Stephen Foster, considered the “trunk of the tree” of American music, became our nation’s first great songwriter by drawing upon, then stitching together, the music of European settlers and African slaves. In this workshop Rex will bring students on an incredible historical journey by demonstrating how Stephen Foster’s songs influenced other great American songsmiths such as Irving Berlin, Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, and Bob Dylan. Rex will help students gain a firsthand knowledge of how music has evolved from our country’s early beginnings. This hallmark workshop also features sing-a-longs and a synopsis of the legendary American songsmiths who influenced Rex’s songwriting and who continue to influence and shape the fabric of today’s popular music.

Rex's Classroom Concert Series

Classroom Concerts are attention-grabbing “edu-tainment” programs for all school-age children. Rex Fowler, lead singer and principal songwriter of the renowned folk/rock duo Aztec Two-Step, offers a variety of workshops created to inspire kids’ interest in the arts. Innovative topics such as Fractured Fairytales & Folk Songs, Songs from the Stratosphere, and A History of American Songsmiths serve as fun educational forays into enchanted lands of learning. By intermingling elements of science, folklore, poetry and song with historical interconnections, Rex aims at instilling a greater appreciation for the arts in young people so they can ultimately express and explore their own unique creativity.

Fractured Fairytales & Folk Songs (Grades K-5)

Fractured Fairytales & Folk Songs is designed to introduce children to the playful side of words through storytelling and song. Though thoroughly entertaining, the greater intention here is to open up and expand the whimsical side of each child’s unique imagination. Rex juxtaposes a cappella style camp songs (There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly/The Harlem Goat) and curriculum-appropriate original songs (The Ballad of Humpty Dumpty & Cinderella/Calico Man), with masterful songwriters such as Stephen Foster (Oh! Susanna), Woody Guthrie (The Car Song), John Lennon & Paul McCartney (All Together Now), Paul Simon (Punky’s Dilemma), Neil Young (I Am A Child), Kenny Loggins (House At Pooh Corner) and many others. This highly energetic and interactive performance, peppered throughout with props, hand clapping and sing-a-longs, is sure to sound a positive chord with young school-age children.

Songs from the Stratosphere (Grades 4-8)

The Songs from the Stratosphere program features selected songs that connect to basic science studies. Rex borrows Simon & Garfunkel’s Cloudy and uses many of his own catchy originals such as Cosmos Lady, Stargazers, Rabbit In The Moon, and The Rain Song to enhance and teach science related topics. Starting with the elements closest to earth, these songs will act as a conduit by introducing a range of subjects beginning with atmospheric layering - then moving upward and outward to cloud structures, rain, moon cycles, the solar system, stars and finally, the cosmos. Additionally, this program offers an introduction to two pioneers of science and astronomy; Copernicus and Galileo. Rex will utilize curriculum related resources such as visual props and charts that relate to each science topic. Besides basic science skills, students learn that creative inspirations can be drawn from many diverse sources, not just personal experiences.

A History of American Songsmiths (Grades K-12)

Rex Fowler is spiritually descended from a long line of American songsmiths. Stephen Foster, considered the “trunk of the tree” of American music, became our nation’s first great songwriter by drawing upon, then stitching together, the music of European settlers and African slaves. In this workshop Rex will bring students on an incredible historical journey by demonstrating how Stephen Foster’s songs influenced other great American songsmiths such as Irving Berlin, Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, and Bob Dylan. Rex will help students gain a firsthand knowledge of how music has evolved from our country’s early beginnings. This hallmark workshop also features sing-a-longs and a synopsis of the legendary American songsmiths who influenced Rex’s songwriting and who continue to influence and shape the fabric of today’s popular music.