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Suggested Reading

1. Rehearsal Rooms

Struggling to improve the acoustics in your band room? Check out how the Medan Band did it.

2. Concerned about playing swing music properly?

Check out my guidelines

3. Ear training exercises for bands

Unlike piano players, ear training is essential for wind band performers. But how many band directors bother to give their bands suitable exercises?

4. Intonation problems

While tuning is simple act of adjusting a length of tubing on a wind instrument (often by reference to a single note), intonation is an ongoing process in which a player strives to match the pitch of others in the ensemble during performance. 

5. “Blowing” a wind instrument

A common misconception among wind players is to believe that the air moves through the instrument in order to produce the sound. This is simply not true. 

6. Conducting – suggestions for home practice

The best way for a conductor to improve is in front of a live ensemble. The unfortunate reality, however, is that this is not always possible. Aspiring conductors therefore have little choice but to find other ways of honing their skills.

 

Studying the Score

  

A conductor also needs to be adequately prepared for the task at hand. Inevitably, this implies that a good deal of time should be devoted in advance to the study of the work that is going to be rehearsed. Studying the score involves:

 

  • Identifying the various melodies, including any contrapuntal textures.
  • Analysing the harmonic background of these melodies and relating this to the phrase structure.
  • Pencilling in the phrase structure on the score and marking in breathing places.
  • Analysing the rhythmic pattern of the melodic lines.
  • Studying key relationships.
  • Analysing the basic rhythmic structure of the entire work.
  • Studying the work's intellectual form and content.
  • Studying the work's emotional content.
  • Deciding when and how to resolve rehearsal problems.


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