Senior Winds

November 16-20:

Content: Interval classifications; Fine-tuning in our pieces.

This week, we have done more work on interval identification.  We have practiced identifying the quality (major, minor or perfect) and the distance (number of letter names between two notes, including both notes. e.g. 3rd).  Here is a recap of the information:

Quality:  First determine if an interval is a Perfect interval.  If it is not a Perfect interval, it is either a major or minor.

  • Perfect: An interval that is the distance of a 4th, 5th, or 8th.  Any other interval distance cannot be perfect.
  • Major: Find the major scale that starts on the first note.  If the second note falls in this major scale, it is a major interval.
  • Minor:  If the second note falls one half-step lower than the a major interval, it is a minor interval.

Distance:  Start by counting the first note.  Each line and space after that counts as an additional note.  Count all the way to the second note, including the second note.  Whatever the number is, that is the distance of the interval.  Make sure you count each line and space in between the notes (each letter name counts as one).

Our new interval assignment (in Clavet) will be found here shortly.  Check back soon to find this assignment.  It is also stored in the folder outside the band room.

In addition, we worked The Cave You Fear in full band rehearsal.  This piece needs the most work.  We need to figure out the last half of the piece.  from measure 75 to the end we need lots of work on our notes, rhythms and style.  It sounds very muddy right now, and we need to clean it up.

You also need to practice Christmas at the Circus, Schneewalzer, and Vitae Lux.  It is important that you understand the basics, as well as the fine details in each of these pieces.  Please practice with a metronome, and with the recording of the piece.  The recording can be found under the recordings and documents page for Senior Winds.

November 12 & 13:

We hope you enjoyed the break!  Now comes the final stretch before our concert on Dec. 7th.  Please be working hard on your pieces at home!

This week for seniors, we continued on the discussion from the content of November 2-6.  We did some small group work on our pieces.

November 2 – 6:

Coffeehouse:  Clavet had their Coffeehouse on November 3 this week.  If any students from Clavet have not handed-in their assignment, please hand it in as soon as possible.  October’s assignment is late as of Nov. 4, so it is in your best interest to hand it in quickly.  Report cards are coming!  The new Coffeehouse assignment will be due for the first class of December, as this will be our next coffeehouse class.  The new Coffeehouse assignment is found here in this link.

At our Nov. 3 Coffeehouse, we talked about specific musicians who have had to overcome disabilities to learn and play music.  Here the musicians we looked at:

Discussion questions – What unique challenges have these musicians overcome?  What would it be like to live with a disability and study music?  What it be easier to have been born with a disability and learn a skill, or to learn a skill and become disabled?  Why?

Content: Musical Form

We talked about the structure of music.  Form is how the music is structured.  Some indicators of form include melodies that sound ‘done’ and move on to a new section, as well as repeated melodies.

Here are some musical forms we discussed in class using posts from our Instagram account, pssd_east_music:

Ternary form – ABA form.  There are two main parts of the song.  After the second part, the first part of the song is repeated.

Through-composed form – No repeating melody.  There is no clear or definite end to one melody/section and the beginning of the next melody/section.  There are many different melodies throughout the song.

Binary Form – AB form.  It starts with one topic or melody, but then switches to a different topic or melody.

Sonata-Allegro Form – ABA’ form.  It starts with an Exposition, or beginning melody/argument, and continues on to the Development, where tension is built and another melody related to the first one is introduced.  After the Development, the Recapitulation (Resolution) is a return of the first melody/argument, sometimes with a slight variation to conclude the piece.

There are other forms of pieces, but these are the only four we looked at in-class.

We also analysed our pieces, The Cave You Fear, and Christmas at the Circus to see if these pieces fit into these basic forms.  We found that The Cave You Fear fit under Through-Composed form, but Christmas at the Circus did not fit into any of these form.  We had to make our own form to describe what happens in Christmas at the Circus (ABCA’).

October 26-30:

Happy Halloween!  Enjoy your treats this weekend, and be safe!

This week we reviewed some of our discussion surrounding intervals, as well as began talking about musical form.  You can view comics related to musical form on our Instagram account, pssd_east_music, which we haven been using in-class for discussing material.  In addition, some schools had the opportunity to do some work on iPads.  At some point in the near future, each group will have this same opportunity to use technology.

This week, practice:

The Cave You Fear – especially mm 75 to end

Christmas at the Circus – correct notes and rhythms throughout the piece

Vitae Lux – good tuning, as well as proper notes for the second half.

Schneewalzer and Viva la Vida – Are your articulations and rhythms correct?

REMINDER: Next week is coffeehouse!  Get your coffeehouse assignment done soon!

 

October 19-23:

October 21st is Back to the Future Day!  We don’t use hoverboards for transportation, but we know you would be racing home to practice your instruments if you had one!

At the beginning of the week, our Seniors were still working on our theory assignment from last Friday.  Following these lessons, we introduced ‘Super Slo-Mo Rehearsal’ day!  This week, we focused on learning each individual note in two of our new pieces (Christmas at the Circus and Viva la Vida), having excellent follow-through with articulations and rhythms.  We touched on the topic of balance, and adjusting our own volume to allow the melody to come through.  In your practice at home, focus on providing lots of air support for your articulations to make them bold, crisp and accurate.  For the hard-to-reach notes, don’t fret.  Have confidence and think of approaching them from above the note.  It’s not as hard as you might convince yourself it is.

Work on the theory assignment for next class, as it is due in your next class.

This week in music: 

  • October 14, 1977: Bing Crosby died at the age of 76.
  • October 14, 1990: Famous conductor and composer, Leonard Bernstein, died.  He composed the music for West Side Story, a story inspired by Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.

October 13-16:

Three new pieces of music are finding their way into your folder this week!  These new pieces are: The Cave You Fear, Christmas at the Circus, and Viva la Vida (this recording is the original song by Coldplay).  Work on the notes and rhythms for these pieces, but especially The Cave You Fear.  We are also working on Clapping Music this week in class.  In general, if you are in Grade 8, you are performing Clap1 part.  If you are in Grade 9-12, you are performing the Clap2 part.  Work on these new pieces, as well as Schneewaltzer and Vitae Lux.

There is a new theory assignment for Senior starting Oct. 16.  If you haven’t done this yet in class, it will be coming on Monday and Tuesday.  The assignment includes 2 steps:

  1. Write out an Eb Major Scale.  Remember a major scale follows the template of W-W-H-W-W-W-H
  2. Identify the types of intervals put on the board.  First, designate whether it is Major, Minor or Perfect.  Finally, identify the distance between the two notes (e.g. 3rd, etc.).  The intervals to identify are found below:Interval Identification

In addition, we talked about the Breathing Gym in class.  You can practice breathing exercises with these authors of the Breathing Gym book.  NOTE: If you feel dizzy at any time during these exercises, this is normal.  Please don’t push yourself to the point of exhaustion or fainting!

ABERDEEN BAND:

Since the brass players are in Regina on October 14, you have been given an assignment.  You assignment can be found in this document: Oct. 14th Aberdeen Class Assignments.  Enjoy your Wednesday!

Senior Band Class Recap – November 7-9th

This week in history:

  • Nov 3rd: Composer Steve Reich – Birthday  Video –
  • Nov 5th: The Beatles released their first single “love me do” which went into the UK charts at number 17.  Months later it would go to #1 in the U.S. when released there.  Mash up beatles vs beastie boys
  • Oct 8th: Andrew Lloyd Webers musical, ‘Cats’ started a record breaking 18 year run on Broadway in 1982.    It was Bruno Mars Birthday.

— For Home Practice — All the below was practiced during class this week

  • Steve Reich – Clapping Music – Parts here: Reich.clapping.music (if the ones handed out go missing – surely not!)
  • Vitae Lux
  • Schneewalzer
  • Major/Minor Scales Concert F major, Concert C minor, Concert Bb Minor
  • Concept review:                                                                                                        – Music Eras and History                                                                                           – Intervals – Total Musicianship pg 12 #1  – Review of Intervals here <– Read me!
  • HOMEWORK – OVERDUE – Make sure your fingering charts are handed in by next lesson

NEW CHARTS COMING NEXT WEEK!

Senior Band Class Recap – November 2-6th  

(Spoilers ahead for Colonsay, Allan and Aberdeen!)

Coffee House – Discussion session

Discussions: Documentary: Teaching Yorkshire (clip)

  • How does music affect the Body?
  • How does music affect you?
  • How can music be used and how is it used in society?

Listening: Spectre soundtrack – Sam Smith

Maybe they can get Daniel Craig to lip-sync it!

  • Music in films – Click here!
  • How does music affect what we see and associate with things?
  • Picture some favorite film soundtracks, now image them with a different soundtrack, how would that change how you interpret the scenes.

Homework- Due: November coffee house (1st band day of November)

  1. Documentary Review: Use these two websites as a basis, find and watch a music related documentary and report back on it to class. (1 page summary – See attachment/handout for specifics and guide of how to write your summary below)                    – http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/ – http://www.documentarytube.com/music  or http://youtube.com
  2. Listening Assignment: List 10 of you favourite songs/pieces of music and why you love them.

The full Assignment can be found here –>    Coffee House assignments October 15             or in the designated spot in or outside your bandroom.

Senior Band Class Recap – October 29-November 2nd

Concept review: Circle of 5ths, Minor Scales,  Music Era’s

Practicing: Vitae Lux, Schneewaltzer, into the cave,  Minor Scales

Homework: Fill in fingering charts for next lesson