Time: 11:00 - 17:00
Location: Keeley Street
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Course Code: ME827B
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Duration: 2 sessions
Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.
What is the course about?
You will learn to play orchestral music from the standard repertoire in a friendly, supportive atmosphere, with a conductor and professional leader (principal violin). We will focus on following phrasing, listening, and playing effectively together as an ensemble.
There is much more playing for strings than for winds in full orchestral playing. The repertoire will therefore comprise c.35 mins of music for orchestra and c.15 mins for winds alone. The group will split for sectionals for winds and strings to work separately some of the time.
To check availability of places for your instrument and gain authorisation to enrol, email music office Please note that you may be required to play 1st or 2nd and we will advise you on this after you have enrolled. Repertoire for this course (all parts available on Google Classroom in advance):
Schubert Zauberharfe overture D.644 (1820)
Saint-Saëns Suite Op.49 (1863/69)
Donizetti Sinfonia in G minor for winds (1817)
Beach Pastorale for wind quintet in G (1941).
What will we cover?
- how to follow a conductor's beat
- how to play core orchestral repertoire stylishly and accurately
- how to blend your instruments together to make a pleasing orchestral sound
- awareness of balance and intonation.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Follow a conductor
- feel more confident in playing your own part
- feel more confident playing in the ensemble
- be familiar with some core repertoire
- understand orchestral texture.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
You should be at least grade 6 standard on your instrument, reading music confidently and accurately. Technical proficiency is essential as the tutors will not focus on instrumental technique in the course.
As this is an intensive workshop, you will need to learn your instrumental part in advance (unless you are a very good sight-reader!).
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
You will learn in one large group, taught by the conductor, for most of the course. There may be separate short sectional rehearsals for strings and winds, but there are no instrument-specific tutorials. You should prepare your own part in advance, as this is an intensive workshop, and the music is not suitable for sight-reading on the day.
The last part of the course will be an informal performance of all pieces.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Please bring your instrument, a hard copy of your instrumental part, and a pencil and eraser to mark up your part during rehearsal. Parts will be available in advance from your Google Classroom. If you have no access to a printer, contact the Music department to request music to be posted.
Cello & double bass City Lit has 4 cellos and 1 double bass. Please ask in advance if you wish to use one of these instruments during the course, to ensure availability. Large instruments may be stored at City Lit overnight, at your own risk.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Related courses throughout the year include String school (Winter / Easter / Summer), String ensemble, Chamber music: intermediate, Chamber music: advanced, City Lit wind ensemble. See Ensembles for details.
You may also be interested in Music history courses, which range from the general introduction Exploring Classical Music through to specialist courses on all eras and genres of western music.
Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.