ChorTeach is ACDA’s online magazine for choral directors and music educators, designed for those who work with amateur singers at all levels. Topics are covered across the range of the choral art. Below are previews of four articles that have been featured in past issues of ChorTeach. You can read and download the full articles here.
Reflections on the Conductor’s Role by Joseph Flummerfelt (Vol. 5, Iss. 2; Winter 2013)
A conductor’s control of dynamics, tempo, and timing between sections and movements is crucial to a successful performance. But if we are not careful, a different type of control can creep in to our approach—control governed by our ego and our fear of being vulnerable with our singers and audiences. This article demonstrates why “conducting is more about connection and far less about controlling” and serves as a reminder to approach music with a composer-centered instead of a conductor-centered mind-set.
Church Choir Directors/Organists: Conducting Gesture and Active Listening in Rehearsals and Worship by Jason Thoms (Vol. 4, Iss. 3; Spring 2012)
Those who hold a position as both church choir director and organist no doubt understand the difficulties of simultaneously assuming these roles. This article offers suggestions for ways to improve conducting gesture while growing the choir as singers and musicians.
The Aging Voice: An Interview with Six Conductors by Mark Lawley (Vol. 2, Iss. 4; Summer 2010)
Written specifically for choral conductors who work with mature adult singers, this insightful article provides a glimpse into the mind of six conductors on topics such as characteristics of the aging voice, psychological effects on singers with a noticeably aging voice, and exercises recommended to improve vocal quality.
An Ear for an Eye: Learning from a Blind Conducting Student by Ian Loeppky (Vol. 2, Iss. 2; Winter 2010)
Proving that “music is first and foremost an auditory experience,” this fascinating article explores what happened when Ian Loeppky taught conducting to a blind student. Certainly the advantages of sight are inarguable, but there is much to be learned about conducting gestures, kinesthetic language, and “feeling” the music from one without this sense.