By Cibelle J. Donza
The capital subject of this website is Orchestra Rehearsals.
The main mission here is to observe and do reviews of rehearsals in different contexts in order to analyze and understand the best strategies used by the conductors in the preparation of a program.
Gestural techniques are admittedly very important for communication between the conductor and the musicians, especially during the performance, but performance is only the culmination of the musical preparation, which occurs mainly during rehearsals, and this is a subject that is not always very deep observed during the academic preparation of conducting students.
There are those who believe that this is a skill that should only be developed in practical life, through experience. And there are those who believe (we are in this category!) that this is a skill that can be taught.
Thus, the VIDEOS REVIEW is the main section of this website.
The process of choosing the videos sought to cover a wide variety of contexts, goals, repertoires, expertise, and backgrounds of the different conductors and orchestra, in this way, we have videos of classical, romantic, and modern repertoire rehearsals with professional orchestras and renowned conductors. Videos of youth orchestra rehearsals were also analyzed, as well as videos of young conductors in a competitive situation, analyzing the candidates' development throughout the competition and observing the positive points in those that were best evaluated by the jury and the negative points of those that were negatively assessed. Until now, we covered a total of 840 minutes of rehearsals.
We tried to cover conductors from different generations, backgrounds, countries, nationalities, and genres. Among famous and young people with a potential career.
Finally, the reviews presented here are intended to be the first step within a larger and inexhaustible research project. Where it aims to expand the scope of observed rehearsals, by doing, for example, comparisons between the same conductors in different styles; different conductors in the same style, and also conducting field research to collect data and analyze processes also in live rehearsals, in order to increase understanding in a systematic way.
So, at that moment we only have the vision of one person (me!), but this is intended to be an open space for exchanges between conductors and conducting students from around the world. Therefore, anyone who wants to contribute can also send their review and analyzed video to the contact box. The review will be published with due credit for those who wrote it. Also, the present reviews are in blog format, allowing comments where you can add ideas.
In addition to the review videos, the website features 2 more parts:
3. READINGS SUGGESTIONS => With some suggestions of books, research, and/or academic articles that deal with the subject "rehearsal" and that served as a basis for the reviews.
Although the symphony orchestra is the main focus of analysis here, the readings are not limited to this group. There are also readings that deal with symphonic bands, opera and also, orchestras in a pedagogical environment, with a focus on music education, considering that the number of books and research on the band and the pedagogical environment is much more extensive than for orchestras. But I understand that they can be adapted to the main focus due to their numerous similarities in the process.
I also included reading suggestions in the area of leadership and organizational psychology. Bearing in mind that the main part of the conductor's leadership exercise takes place in the rehearsals, then the sources dealing with this aspect were directed to this context.
Most of the items in this section have been accessed through Internet databases, such as ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global and JSTOR. Many of these resources have been found by searching on indexes such as WorldCat, RILM, Music Periodicals Index, and The Printed Index. When journals or books were not available digitally, they were requested by the Interlibrary Loan, when possible. Others were accessed through the Ithaca College Library.