Devon Muhlert

Devon Muhlert

Music teacher from Terrace marks 50 years in industry

Jack of all trades Devon Muhlert celebrates milestone amid COVID-19

A private music teacher based out of Vernon’s Caetani Cultural Centre has reached a career milestone.

Fifty years.

“It’s hart to imagine an arts career of 50 years,” Devon Muhlert said. “But, if you’re self employed, it is possible. You can kiss the gold watch goodbye, though… Few use watches now anyway.”

Muhlert’s career took off in Terrace, B.C., where she worked as an itinerant band teacher. There, she drove between schools to teach students the art of music.

As the first woman music director in British Columbia’s north, Muhlert combined her school bands to create a viable community band which subsequently won awards.

“It’s great when people enrich their lives with music,” Muhlert said. “There are so many health benefits to singing and playing a wind instrument — lung capacity increases, gives you deeper breath, improved mood and a feeling of accomplishing something you may have thought a reach.”

The benefits surpass the physical, though, she said. Especially for some demographics.

“For some at-risk kids, the band or choir was a place they felt accepted and appreciated,” she said. “They could finally build a sense of themselves.”

Muhlert served as the music director for more than 12 choirs including a hand-bell choir. She directed musicals and served as Music Minister for five churches in B.C. and the North West Territories.

On the side, she taught private lessons in voice, flute, saxophone, guitar and songwriting.

But music isn’t her only talent.

Muhlert is also a published author and acclaimed photographer.

She has translated and wrote for the International Choral Bulletin, based in Belgium, for about a decade. She started a portrait, wedding and grad photography studio in NWT and published a book on Sveva Caetani and her family entitled Cadence of Colour in 2017.

In her 50 years in the industry, Muhlert has published more than 200 columns under the title “Devon’s Delusions,” and has penned around 100 original songs — some of which were arranged for choir.

The Okanagan Arts Award Literary winner said she’s also delved into fine arts with painting and collage.

With four grandchildren, she realized they had no real concept of what Nana actually did all day which inspired Muhlert to create a book to show them.

That’s when it hit her — it’s been 50 long years.

“When COVID-19 changed everything, the singing and playing also stopped,” she said. “But nothing keeps an artist down for long.

“There’s always hope — and solos.”

For more information, visit devonicity.ca.

READ MORE: Vernon venue amps up the Roster with indoor Spikeball, league

READ MORE: Telling Caetani’s story


@caitleerach
Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Music

Just Posted

“Skeena,” by John Hudson and Paul Hanslow is one of five fonts in the running to become the default for Microsoft systems and Office programs. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Font named after Skeena River could become the next Microsoft default

One of the five new fonts will replace Calibri, which has been Microsoft’s default since 2007

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

A vial of AstraZeneca vaccine is seen at a mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic in Calgary, Alta., Thursday, April 22, 2021. Dr. Ben Chan remembers hearing the preliminary reports back in March of blood clots appearing in a handful of European recipients of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Science on COVID, VITT constantly changing: A look at how doctors keep up

While VITT can represent challenges as a novel disorder, blood clots themselves are not new

Poached trees that were taken recently on Vancouver Island in the Mount Prevost area near Cowichan, B.C. are shown on Sunday, May 10, 2021. Big trees, small trees, dead trees, softwoods and hardwoods have all become valuable targets of tree poachers in British Columbia as timber prices hit record levels. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jen Osborne.
Tree poaching from public forests increasing in B.C. as lumber hits record prices

Prices for B.C. softwood lumber reached $1,600 for 1,000 board feet compared with about $300 a year ago

The warm weather means time for a camping trip, or at least an excursion into nature. How much do you know about camps and camping-related facts? (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: Are you ready to go camping?

How many camp and camping-related questions can you answer?

On Friday, May 14 at Meadow Gardens Golf Club in Pitt Meadows, Michael Caan joined a very elite club of golfers who have shot under 60 (Instagram)
Crowds at English Bay were blasted with a large beam of light from an RCMP Air-1 helicopter on Friday, May 14. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marc Grandmaison
Police enlist RCMP helicopter to disperse thousands crowded on Vancouver beach

On Friday night, police were witness to ‘several thousand people staying well into the evening’

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

People shop in Chinatown in Vancouver on Friday, February 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver community leaders call for action following 717% rise in anti-Asian hate crimes

‘The alarming rise of anti-Asian hate in Canada and south of the border shows Asians have not been fully accepted in North America,’ says Carol Lee

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
Body of UBC professor found on Salt Spring Island, no foul play suspected

Sinikka Elliott taught sociology at the university

Most Read