College of Arts Humanities and Social Sciences, Lamont School of Music, Musicology and Ethnomusicology
Orchestra, Conducting, Music
There are a lot of conductors, and every conductor is different. There are as many conducting techniques as well. But one of the most famous approaches in conducting an ensemble, whether a wind ensemble, orchestra, or chorus, is to deliver the beat and expecting the ensemble for an immediate ‘attack’ of the note. An instant reciprocation and reaction at the same exact time as the ‘ictus’ of the conductor. Basically, doing it exactly together. The other notion is that the conductor beating should be beating ahead of time (almost a beat ahead) to give the ensemble some time to prepare and eventually react to the gestures of the one who’s standing on the podium. Esa-Pekka Salonen, the then chief conductor of the LA Philharmonic, is an ambassador of the approach of expecting music on the beat. While Daniele Gatti, the former chief conductor of the Concertgebouw Orchestra, gives the beat ahead and seem to be as effective as the method of Salonen. Both conducting two of the best orchestras in the world. In this annotated bibliography are the resource materials that will serve as important tools, both technical and historical perspectives from the great conductors of the past and the conductors of today, that would help to arrive with the conclusion of which method is actually better to produce a more reactive, pleasant, or particular sound.
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University of Denver, "“For the Orchestra Musicians: Conducting on the Beat Is Effective or Too Late?”" (2022). Musicology and Ethnomusicology: Student Scholarship. 148.