When the what and the how is gone, get back to why
In a world where rehearsals are online, performances are on hold and the future is uncertain, what are our ensembles for?
Why your ensemble is like a house plant
If we thought of our ensembles as plants, we might find it a lot easier to tend to their needs and understand our responsibilities.
Back to rehearsals: Setting expectations and trusting in your process
Spinning your wheels because you're still in holiday mode? Frantic because you have an important performance soon? Learn three strategies to replace short term thinking with long range development that will make your ensemble better.
Conducting Success in 2020: How to ditch old conducting habits, and make new ones
Do you have a bad conducting habit that's been annoying you for a long time? That thing that you remember once for 3 seconds when you're on the podium, then then next time you think of it is an hour later? Here's how to solve that problem, for good.
How to recover from a bad rehearsal
Sometimes things just don't go according to plan. We can write the best lesson objectives, have the highest hopes and the most open heart and it can still fall to pieces. Those days when nothing is working. Suddenly it's like the last five rehearsals didn't happen and you're back to square one. The musicians are restless and all the attention is anywhere but on the task at hand. How do we respond to this and come out better, rather than broken?
Why Can’t the Students Pick Their Own Music?
I received this question from a colleague at the end of her tether, wondering what she should tell parents who were hounding her, and students who wanted to play endless concerts of Harry Potter, Star Wars, Pharell Williams and Beyonce. "We like that music, why can’t we play it in band?"
Why does my band look sloppy onstage?
You’re at festival with your band and as you walk onstage you wonder: why Ethan in the 3rd clarinets is shuffling his music around? why are the trombones always the last to stand for the conductor? why did the percussionist just drop something? why does Emily always wear white socks with black pants and shoes?