Bow control is so important, and the things you learn about it from the staccato stroke carry over to many other bow strokes: detache, accents, marcato, spiccato, hooked bows, loure, etc. Staccato teaches you how to control bow speed and contact point, as well as how to grab and release the string through the bow hair using your fingers. The following video goes into detail about staccato, and is the first of a four part series. I suggest watching the entire series, it is SO good!! Visit Youtube and watch the rest!!
Now for the viola, cello, and bass sections. In Sinfonia, you have to perform spiccato, which is a short stroke that comes off the string using the bow's natural bounce. The next video has excellent practice strategies that you can implement easily at home (we will try them in class too!). Often when we are learning a new concept on our instruments, we combine it with old concepts. This allows us to really concentrate on the new parts while the older parts are on auto pilot. You can also add spiccato to your scales, arpeggios, and thirds. Remember to smile, and happy practicing!!!
This year at Crockett, the Fine Arts team is planning a Winter Showcase on December 11th. All the Fine Arts will be represented as well as all of Crockett's feeder schools including Bedichek and Covington. The Crockett combined Orchestras and Full Orchestra will be performing in the newly refurbished PAC.
We want to sound awesome for all of our guests and represent Crockett with our best possible performance. Everyone must practice daily!! To prepare for this concert, the orchestras will have after school and lunch sectionals and rehearsals starting in November and ending December 11th. The schedule for these rehearsals are as follows.
Basses--Mondays at the beginning of lunch
Violin 2--Mondays 4:30-5:15pm
Cellos--Tuesdays at the beginning of lunch (not Nov. 3)
Violin 1--Tuesdays 4:30-5:15pm (not Nov. 3)
Violas--Wednesdays at the beginning of lunch
Full Orchestra--Thursdays 4:30-5:15pm
Combined Orchestra rehearsals:
Wednesday, December 2nd, 4:30-5:30pm
Tuesday, December 8th, 4:30-5:30pm
If there is a reason to miss rehearsals, students must let me know in writing a minimum of 24 hours in advance and make up the practice with me during lunch on Thursdays or Fridays. Thank you for your support and happy practicing!!
We have started working on two new songs in orchestra to demonstrate some of the skills we've been working on: vibrato and 3rd position shifting. The first piece is All the Pretty Little Horses, arranged by Anne McGinty. The piece is based on an American folk lullaby, with a soft and delicate style meant to sooth the listener into a slumber. Legato bowing combined with phrasing in the long musical lines will develop into a mature sound the piece needs. The following video of this piece is performed by a wind ensemble, but it is musically the best recording I have found.
The next piece, Sinfonia in D, requires shifting and third position fluency, especially for the first violin section. We are reviewing these techniques in class in preparation for performance. If students would like to continue to work on these things at home, I included the Powerpoint we used in class, below.
J.B. Saint-Georges was a French Composer during the late 1700's, or the Classical Era. He composed comic operas, orchestral and chamber music, and songs. The piece we are learning is an overture to one of his comic ballets, "L'amant anonyme." The style is very light and clean, much like Mozart's overtures. Crisp attacks with fast, long bows and impeccable intonation will help create the ringing tone and dynamic without making the music too heavy. Listen to this and other classical music, from composers such as Hadyn and Mozart, to develop an ear for they style as part of your happy practicing!!!