Beginner’s Conducting Class

And here’s the word from the Beginner’s Conducting Class…

Wow. Do I have a lot to learn. This is a real nuts and bolts class taught by both Dr. Jim Jordan and Dr. Giselle Wyers, a Westminster Choir College Alum. A lot of the same material that’s being taught in John’s class is also being touched on here, but in a very basic fashion, which is just what I need. Tocka-Teeka-Tocka-Teeka – yep, much to my surprise, my voice and my movements are not going at the same rate. But that’s the basics…the real work of conducting, I’m learning, is from the inside out.

Heard in class today…

“Conducting begins with the human interaction, not with the patterns.”

“Spend time with yourself – get back to center.” Activities you should engage in include “journaling, sitting under a tree – learn to be quiet and still. Do something for yourself, so that you know (or learn) who you are.”

“Your thought – your decision – is formed when you breathe in.  When the container (the body/mind) is ‘right,’  then the breath will come in, and the gestures you make will be natural and honest.”

“Affirm others daily. Affirm yourself daily.”

“Keep human beings intact. If the sound isn’t right, the first place to look is at yourself – what are you doing to evoke that kind of sound?”

Jim Jordan told us today that he continues to teach Beginning Conducting each semester (and again now during the summer) to keep himself honest. “It’s just like at universities where they have writing programs,” he says. “Everybody wants to teach creative writing, but nobody wants to teach grammar. But realistically, it always returns to the basics.”

Must sign off for now…I have to watch, study and analyze a video of Jim Jordan’s skeleton conducting and make some notes in my workbook. Perhaps this small glass of Puertas Novas (2006) that John just poured for me will help my concentration…



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