Choral Conducting Syllabus - 2004
MUS 4701 - 3 hours credit
MWF 12:30-1:20 pm
Office - Crawford 208
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Seattle Pacific University seeks to be a premier Christian university fully committed to engaging the culture and changing the world by graduating people of competence and character, becoming people of wisdom and modeling grace-filled community.
The Music Department at Seattle Pacific University seeks to help students know themselves, develop their talents and abilities, appreciate their cultural heritage, and integrate their knowledge and skills in a life characterized by Christian faith, wholeness, and service.
Prerequisite: Mus 2700 or equivalent. Presents advanced choral conducting techniques. Class not open to: Freshman, Sophomore.
**Students with disabilities need to contact Disabled Student Services in the Center for Learning to request academic accommodations. Disabled Student Services sends Disability Verification Letters out to all your professors indicating the appropriate accommodations for the classroom based on your disability.
II. GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
Enable the students to:
1. Refine basic conducting skills.
2. Understand the relationship between text and music and how that effects conducting.
3. Communicate expression to a choir through conducting technique using a wide palate of gesture.
4. Achieve accuracy and conservation of motion for effective conducting.
5. Learn techniques to assist a choir in proper tone production.
6. Learn basic terminology which assists in score reading and interpretation.
7. Analyze music in terms of form, harmony, and melody; how analysis relates to the text and conducting technique.
8. Identify problem areas in conducting and discover ways to improve them.
9. Discover ways of going beyond music in performance, creating artistic performance.
10. Gain experience in preparing music for conducting.
11. Identify and learn conducting gesture which may assist a choir in overcoming common choral problems.
III. TEXT and SUPPLIES
A. No text required to buy. Blank Video Tape, labeled with your name.
Suggested additional materials:
McElheran, Brock. Conducting Technique: For Beginners and Professionals. New York: Oxford University Press. 1966.
Decker, Harold A. and Colleen J. Kirk. Choral Conducting; Focus on Communication. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall. 1988.
Robinson, Ray and Winold, Allen. The Choral Experience: Literature, Materials and Methods. NY: Harper's College Press. 1976.
IV. EXPECTATIONS AND GRADING
1. Readings and discussions - as assigned
2. Term Quizzes - These quizzes are on terms that are important to the conductor.
Terms can be found at: CHORAL CONDUCTING TERMS
Other Tempo Related Terms
Terms For Changing Tempo
Terms For Changing Dynamics
Division And Octave Terms
Terms Indicating A Return To Normal
Repeats And Coda Procedures
Pitch Letter Names
Odds 'N Ends
Nomenclature Of Note Values
Terms Related To Strings
Terms Related To Brass
3. Conductor Observations
- During the quarter, each student is to observe two different choral conductors (of which the instructor does not count). Any high school, church, or college conductors would qualify. Observation of performance is preferred, although a rehearsal is acceptable. If any question, ask the instructor. Due by last class period. A summary of each observation is to be written including observed strengths, style, impressions, and what you can learn from other's conducting style.
4. Text Projects - These are as described in handouts. Due dates as assigned.
5. Conducting Experiences -
A. Drills (daily work) during unit on gesture (graded on preparation)
B. Lab work (graded on preparation and improvement/development of conducting skills)
C. Each person is expected to assist and play parts on the piano for each other. This basic skill is essential for the choral conductor.
D. Lab experiences will be assigned choral pieces to be evaluated by a) peers, b) instructor, and c) self using video tape.
In these evaluations, all will be looking for a) strengths, b) areas that have improved, and c) areas that need further work.
E. Each student will critique and evaluate your other's conducting. Each will learn much from observing and comparing.
Please remember that constructive criticism is that from which we learn best.
F. Each student will prepare a Concert Choir piece for conducting.
Each student will conduct Concert Choir in a brief rehearsal of the piece. This will be scheduled in the second half of the term.
This will be evaluated only by the members of the conducting class.
6. Attendance - Excellent attendance is required. One can not acquire classroom information and experience if you are not here. Excessive absences will be penalized. Be punctual, excessive tardiness will be penalized.
7. Personal Evalutation - Each student will complete a personal evaluation of progress made during the term. The evaluation will assess strengths, weaknesses, improvements made and improvements still needed. This is to include a record and a summary of video tape reviews done during the term. An evaluation form will be provided near the end of the term.
8. Final - Final will be a conducting activity and not written. It will be an assigned piece that a student will conduct for the class. It is an extension of the laboratory experience.