Monday, April 25, 2011

Rehearsal Techniques

Today we discussed some interesting scenarios regarding brass ensemble challenges. That led to the creation of a "Top Ten" list of rehearsal techniques. Here is what we came up with:

1. Group warm up (scales, chords, chorales)
2. Recording and immediate playback
3. Simply and clarify the music (slower tempos, staccato version, remove melody)
4. Rehearse with an amplified metronome
5. Conceptualize a uniform group tone
6. Score study (everyone gets a copy, study individually, write in cues)
7. Sing and conduct (great when fatigued)
8. Group listening (to recordings of group and to reference recordings)
9. Research (historical background, composer information)
10. Comparitive playing (motifs, fugue themes, articulation and phrase checking)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Listening Session - 4/20/11

Wednesday morning, we had a group listening presentation, and Kate played for us a recording of Leonard Bernstein's Prelude, Fugue, and Riffs. Check out the video below of Bernstein himself conducting (from memory):

I played two selections from Meridian Arts Ensemble's recording called "Ear Mind I". They were Tom Pierson's Brass Quintet, which was commissioned by MAE, and their arrangement of Franz Zappa's Lumpy Gravy.