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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000758.txt from 2004/10

From: Joseph Wakeling <joseph.wakeling@-----.net>
Subj: Re: [kl] Appealing to the superficial
Date: Mon, 25 Oct 2004 15:04:35 -0400

Adam Michlin wrote:

>> Not necessarily. You can engage in music through a recording in ways
>> you can't in a concert, for example by singing or whistling along
>> with the music. You'd get kicked out if you tried doing that in
>> Carnegie Hall, but with a CD in the private of your own home you can
>> make some interesting musical explorations this way.
>
>
> I really am sorry, but I just can't resist.
>
> So, to be clear, it is OK to sing with or whistle with Mozart but not
> to put a beat to it?
>
> I just want to be sure I understand the rules. =)

The point is, you can "get inside" the music---singing or whistling lets
you explore harmony and melody. You can learn the different musical
lines and how they go together. You can explore rhythms, you can dance
round the room.

Within the privacy of your own home *anything* goes. It might be a
cheap thing like putting a beat to K622. But can just as easily be real
creative exploration.

> So which comes first, their desire to hear Mozart or actually hearing
> Mozart? It doesn't seem like a chicken and egg problem question to me.

It's not. But it seems to me that walking into a classroom and saying
"Today We Will Be Listening To Mozart" probably gets you on a losing
streak to start with, because "Mozart" carries so much baggage with it
(piano lesson torture, for starters). I'd rather start off kids by
giving them all a CD with a wide variety of tracks burned on it,
*without* any documentation (so they couldn't know who they were
listening to). I'd ask them to write down what they think about each
track (stressing that there is no "wrong answer" and that it's OK to say
bad things if they want to, but that what I really want are their honest
thoughts and feelings). Then I'd type up the responses to each track
and put them back in front of the class with names removed, and have a
discussion about the different music based around the (now anonymous)
comments. That would probably point to all sorts of productive
directions the class could take in future, as well as giving clues about
how might be a good idea to help students to appreciate music that maybe
at first sight (or sound) is less appealing.

-- Joe

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