The Instrumentalist

Articles February 2013

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Teaching:
Blending Passion and Humor, Lessons Learned Over a Career in Music
Often a contentious meeting with a parent can take a positive turn. “Rather than talking about who is sitting in which chair, let’s discuss what you child can do to become a better player.”
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Profile:
100th Anniversary: A Morton Gould Salute, Reflections on an Open-Minded Genius
Despite the urging of his publisher, Morton Gould initially resisted writing for bands until he heard a performance of his work by William Revelli and the University of Michigan band. “The Michigan Band’s performance of his piece overwhelmed him, and he was impressed by the bands sensitive and expressive performance. This experience ignited Gould’s life-long interest in bands. During his career Gould composed over 45 works for young and mature wind groups.”
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Teaching:
Theory Conspiracy: Helping Students Find Meaning Inside the Music
After preparing an entire year’s worth of excellent music, Nick Little was always surprised that students did not take great pride in the accomplishment. “I expected my students to have a feeling akin to completing a masterful painting, satisfied and fulfilled, but instead they felt that they had just finished a year’s worth of painting by numbers.” That reaction changed how he taught music.
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String Clinic:
Sightreading Practice
“Although students will often be presented with sightreading excerpts that contain bowings, they may have to make bowing decisions on the spot. As a general rule, down beats and long strings of separate eighth and sixteenth notes should begin with a down bow. Pickups are usually played with an up-bow.”
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Woodwind Clinic:
Woodwind Repairs Directors Can Make And Those That Should Always Go to a Shop
“When considering whether to repair something myself, I first consider how difficult the repair is. If it will take me five minutes or less and is something I can do with the basic tools in my drawer, I will make the repair.”
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Life of Reely:
Section Leader Essays
Over the years, students have made some novel arguments. “You will probably see this essay and automatically deny me the position of section leader, but before you do, just listen to the reasons I want to be section leader. I know you see me goofing around and not being responsible, but I’m going to change.”
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Notes from Northfield:
The Marks of a Good Musician

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