Teaching Ensemble Online?
Feeling frustrated trying to teach your ensemble to learn individual parts when only one person can play at a time...or there's no performance in sight?Terrified of sinking days into editing a mosaic video or multi-track file?Sick of trying to run rehearsals online where everything is sub-optimal a compromise or a workaround?
What if you could run activities that make the most of online learning
to engage and develop your students
Is this you?
You conductor or lead an ensemble like a choir, band, orchestra, jazz band or string group.
You're rehearsing online, hybrid and/or without instruments.
Then this book is for you!
From Surviving to Thriving
You're in a Zoom rehearsal. Everyone is on mute while one person plays, or maybe there's a backing track. You've been working on the music - a regular ensemble piece - even though there's no actual performance in sight. The communication is slow, you can't really tell who's getting it or not. There's no real musical interaction. The musicians aren't engaged and it's actually making you miss in person rehearsals even more.
This is what surviving looks like. Doing the old thing, in the old way, in a new context where it simply doesn't work.
What if instead we could be thriving in online rehearsals?
You're in a Zoom rehearsal. Everyone is sharing their small group contribution to a larger project. People are in breakout rooms preparing a presentation, or a quiz, or a group composition. People are unmuting and having a go at improvising. People's faces are lighting up at seeing each others' work and achievements. Everyone is working together, collaboratively to make something as a team.
Sound like a normal in person rehearsal? That's because we can choose to lead musical, pedagogically sound activities that get us back to the real reason we do ensembles, just in a different way.
Are you for real?
Yes! I'm Ingrid Martin
and I'm a middle & high school band teacher and youth orchestra (age 16-35) conductor that's been running online rehearsals for 6 months. From the outset, I've been using activities like and including those in the books to transform not only my ensembles, but teaching them to teachers across the globe who are now leading them successfully with their own groups!
Like anything, it takes dedication, courage, experimentation and failure to get better at doing something completely new. But I am thoroughly convinced that now is a time of great opportunity for ensembles to go from merely surviving to thriving.
Since the start of the pandemic I've been delivering online professional development for conductors for:
- The Australian Music Examinations Board (AMEB)
- Melbourne Symphony Orchestra
- Musica Viva Australia
- Australian String Teachers' Association (AUSTA)
You can read more about me and get heaps of free resources at Conducting Artistry
Scroll through the images above for sample pages of the activities, assessment and sharing work, plus more detail on the how and why of the book.
All 110 activities include:
- Detailed description of the activity
- Key to instantly identify activities that do/don't need instruments and that are/aren't collaborative
- How to share or assess work with your school/audience/community
The activities cover:
- 24 Listening Skills activities
- 16 Practicing & Performing Skills activities
- 8 Ensemble Skills activities
- 15 Improvisation/Composition activities
- 8 Critical Thinking & Evaluation Skills activities
- 13 Research Skills activities
- 5 Broadening Listening activities
- 8 Social Outreach activities
- 4 Life-Long Learning activities
- 9 Social Interaction activities