Making Music

Making Music

JOHN T. PARTINGTON
Copyright Date: 1995
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt7zt186
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  • Book Info
    Making Music
    Book Description:

    Making music by John T. Partington.

    eISBN: 978-0-7735-8379-5
    Subjects: Music

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. [i]-[vi])
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. [vii]-[x])
  3. PART I ORIENTATION
    • CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION
      (pp. 3-14)

      I decided to write this book because I was bursting to broadcast what a number of professional musicians had told me about how they enable themselves to perform. I believe that their personal knowledge and collective wisdom, recorded in these pages, will be of value to students of music, teachers, coaches, performers, patrons, audience members, CD listeners, and almost anyone interested in understanding more about what the world-renowned tuba player and teacher, Arnold Jacobs, has termed the “mentallies” of making music.

      My original purpose in interviewing these performers was to satisfy certain research requirements for funding by the Social Sciences...

    • CHAPTER TWO BACKGROUND AND CAREER DEVELOPMENT
      (pp. 15-62)

      The main parts of this book illustrate how professional orchestral musicians enable themselves to make music. But what empowered these individuals to become music-makers? What personal, pedagogical, and experiential factors were involved in their development? This chapter attempts to provide answers by reference to how the performers themselves have described their own development. Their retrospective reports are organized into three sections. The first section covers predisposing factors and personal dispositions in their early life. The second section includes their experiences with music teachers. Finally, in the third section you will learn about how they viewed their development throughout their professional...

  4. PART II PERFORMANCE PREPARATION
    • CHAPTER THREE LEARNING AND ARTISTIC PREPARATION
      (pp. 65-104)

      This chapter includes a great deal of important material about learning and performance preparation. So much, in fact, that a preview may be helpful.

      Consider the following three excerpts from performer’s self-reports. The first suggests that the approach to learning depends on the material, and that both technical and artistic preparation are necessary and may occur simultaneously. The second excerpt illustrates the highly personal, re-creative conceptual processes involved in learning orchestral repenoire. And, finally, the third passage highlights the central role of imagination, personal intention, and a dramatic orientation toward performance preparation.

      Violin B It is virtually impossible to say...

    • CHAPTER FOUR PRACTICING
      (pp. 105-116)

      The purpose of this chapter is to provide an opportunity for you to read and think about how professional musicians have described their practicing. But before getting into the details, consider the following self-reports, which represent fundamental axioms about practicing:

      Piano A Playing is a compulsive necessity for me. So when I can’t practice I get bitchy and irritable. For me, to stay in shape and to play is as important as it is to eat and sleep.

      Flute A Some people just practice over and over, but it is how well you practice that is important.

      The well-spring of...

    • CHAPTER FIVE PRE-CONCERT PREPARATION
      (pp. 117-136)

      Following the lengthy period of learning and practicing, and just prior to the performance, a particular stage of preparation is evident in the self-reports of most of these performers. During these one or two days, performers are deeply immersed in the music and engaged in preparing themselves physically and mentally, so as to perform at their best.

      Viola B (Conductor) In terms of readying myself to actually perform, all through my twenties I was constantly experimenting to find what worked for me. Now my routines are almost unconscious. If I know that I haven’t been able to do something …...

  5. PART III PERFORMING
    • CHAPTER SIX IDEAL PERFORMING STATES
      (pp. 139-164)

      Orchestral performers in general, and principal players in particular, face awesome concentration and emotional demands. All members of the orchestra must be cognizant of, and faithful to the intentions of the composer, as well as being open and responsive to the intentions, actions, and emotions of other players, and especially of the conductor. In addition to these demands, principal players face the challenging dual role of orchestral performer on the one hand, and section leader and soloist on the other. As section leader, he or she must be particularly in touch with, and provide direction to his or her instrumental...

    • CHAPTER SEVEN DISTRESS MANAGEMENT
      (pp. 165-190)

      This chapter will discuss and illustrate how performers manage to cope with the distress of becoming distracted and anxious during performance.

      The terms “distracted” and “anxious,” used in reference to states of mind in performance, have much the same meaning and implications. This is evident in the following self-reports:

      Trumpet A While playing you can bedistractedby being in the future, like when a difficult note is coming up, or in the past, by thinking about how well that last note sounded, or about the mistake you just made. To control this I must be in a continuous state...

    • CHAPTER EIGHT TRANSCENDENT PERFORMANCE
      (pp. 191-216)

      Orchestral performers experience very special moments when they are making music. These moments are not unlike the reported experience of jazz musicians when they are “in the groove,” or of athletes when they are “in sync” or “in the zone.” The experience also seems similar to the “flow” and “peak identity” phenomenon, which has been reported by a variety of people during and following their most memorable and challenging achievements.

      The first section of this chapter will illustrate how these moving moments are described by performers. Because these joyous experiences play a central role in a performer’s satisfaction and motivation,...