Thursday, March 7, 2019

Sharing Our Secrets: Phrasing and Expression, ASTA 2019

I am really pleased to have the opportunity to present today at ASTA 2019 with my dear friends Dr. Rebecca Macleod and Jim Palmer.  We will be in the Sandia/Santa Ana Room at 1:00 PM on Thursday, March 7. In our session, Sharing Our Secrets: Phrasing and Expression, we will share tips and secrets that promote musical expression and nuance with your school orchestra. Topics will include a variety of approaches to identifying phrase structure, playing with different tone colors, grouping notes with speech patterns, executing rubato, and engaging students in functional listening.  Exercises that promote musical sensitivity and student independence will be demonstrated. Attendees are certain to enjoy and gain from the panel interaction with students and each other.  We are pleased to be working with Rebecca Simons and the La Cueva High School Camerata from Albuquerque, New Mexico as our demo group.  There is nothing like working with kids to demonstrate the skills of working with kids!

As for my part of the session, I will be utilizing the string orchestra arrangement of Slane (Be Thou My Vision), arranged by Percy Hall.  It is not a super-difficult arrangement, but there are many opportunities for interesting phrasing and expression embedded within the piece.  I will be focusing some of the best tips and strategies for phrasing and expression that I have developed over the years.

These will include:

Approach Arrive Depart

Note Grouping and Speech Patterns

The Importance of a Unified Downbeat

Pick up your instrument and play

Standing rehearsal

Concepts growing from the word "Dynamic"

The Roller Coaster

Finding Your Unique Voice and Perspective as a Director: Push/Pull


The Chorale and Breathing

and others

I will expand on these more in coming days. For now, I look forward to seeing you this afternoon!

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