This chapter examines the musical practices and procedures of choruses such as the famous Gay Men’s Chorus within the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer) communities of the United States and Europe, and more specifically the discourse in and around them. It focuses on choral pedagogy as it is found in such ensembles and communities, drawing on the literature and first-hand accounts from singers, conductors and audience members, and examines what they uniquely value in their singing. Specific questions include: what is a good sound for an early MTF (male to female) transgender singer? Is it good to have female tenors in your ensemble, and if so, how many? How does the meaning of a song change for singers and audience when sung by a group of 250 gay men? How does that inflect the way in which that song should be taught to the singers? In short, is there a queer choral pedagogy?
Many of the societal injustices historically perpetrated against persons with disabilities are well known: educational segregation, inaccessible public buildings and programs, and lack of employment opportunities. Less obvious and rarely acknowledged are issues related to the social integration of persons with disabilities and the resulting educational implications. Students with disabilities who are socially accepted and well assimilated into their school and are more likely to graduate and to secure employment. Indicators of social inequities are often subtle and overlooked, thus making teachers powerless to facilitate classroom interactions that contribute to the well-being and educational success of students with disabilities. The ability to embrace diversity in all its facets and to advance social justice requires that educators (1) understand disability culture and its place within the majority culture, (2) recognize stereotypic and stigmatizing views of persons with disability, and (3) create socially and musically inclusive environments for students with disabilities.
When considering teaching and conducting diverse populations in community choirs, one must begin with discussions of the phenomenon itself: a description of the term, a brief history of adult singing ensembles in the United States, and an exploration into the many types of community choirs and issues such as age, gender, exclusivity, purpose, and goals. Examined research on these issues is organized into large topics such as adult learning theories (music literacy and learning styles) and adult physiological concerns (untrained adult singers’ vocal mechanisms and aging voice issues). Personal identity growth or creation as individual musicians must be taken into account, as well as social implications of ensemble identity (among group members and by external community members). Finally motivation for joining and remaining in community choirs will be part of this chapter. That necessary phenomenon is examined through lenses such as choral repertoire preference, social needs, and personal goals fulfillment.
Kari K. Veblen
This article examines current research and practice in formal, nonformal, and informal learning for adult music students. In a formal setting, the teacher controls the materials, pacing, and interactions in a structured environment. Nonformal learning practices involve systematic and deliberate but less regulated pursuits that occur outside of educational structures. Informal practices comprise aspects of knowledge and skill acquisition that are largely experiential.
This article considers the influence of the National Society for the Study of Education Yearbook, Basic Concepts in Music Education (1958), on the actions of music teachers. The Yearbook strongly influenced emerging scholars working towards a doctorate in music education and searching for substantive ideas that would support their own contributions to their chosen vocation. Research-based efforts in music education have fostered impressive growth in further theory, but had little impact on school programs and practices. Several conditions in music education that support the separation of theory from practice are discussed.
Hermione Ruck Keene and Lucy Green
Music summer schools in the United Kingdom offer a holiday context for “serious leisure” for amateurs, and high-level tuition for aspiring professionals. The majority exist in distinct spaces for either the vocational or avocational musician; Dartington International Summer School is anomalous in that it is attended by amateur, aspiring professional and professional musicians. Theories of leisure as symbol, play, and the other, and Bahktin’s theory of the “carnivalesque” are used in this chapter as lenses to view participant experience. Mantie’s concept of the learner-participant dichotomy sheds light on the clashes and complementarity arising from the differing intentions of the participants. The chapter discusses how the leisure-learning context of the summer school impacts on participants’ musical identity, and can serve both to challenge and reinforce hierarchical status relationships between vocational and avocational musicians.
It seems that many concert programs are presented without enough concern for the overall flow, purpose, and direction of the choral performance itself. Often, many wonderful selections are included, but rarely do they truly work together in tandem or with enough significant diversity and color changes to warrant the audiences complete attention. Several unique models for programming at all levels are discussed. Questions are raised concerning choral programming tendencies (from Psalm choral settings to mixed meter music to Carmina Burana) and how the building of varied repertoires and unorthodox pairings can assist true success. In this age of diminishing crowds, fiscal resources, and rehearsal time, our ability to creatively weave the material to capture our singers and our audiences at the same time is extremely critical. Finally, we touch upon engaging the audience from the moment the ensemble takes the stage until the final ovation.
Abigale D'Amore and Gareth Dylan Smith
The chapter discusses the centrality of music making to the lives of young people, framing teenagers’ out-of-school music making and attendant identity realization as leisure activities. It presents arguments for including in school music classrooms the music that students enjoy outside of school. It describes Musical Futures, an approach to informal music learning developed from understanding how popular musicians learn and adopting these practices for the music classroom. Citing examples of nationwide research on Musical Futures from secondary schools in England, the chapter balances benefits and challenges of adopting the approach, and considers implications of a focus in school on the process rather than the product of music making. The authors argue that framing and aspiring to music making as leisure through this particular pedagogical approach could stand to benefit students, teachers, schools, and society.
Samuel Leong, Pamela Burnard, Neryl Jeanneret, Bo Wah Leung, and Carole Waugh
This article presents six case studies from England, Australia, and Hong Kong, which illustrate the different ways creativity in music is defined and assessed by teachers and learners in various educational contexts. It considers the influence of educational policies on the assessment of musical creativity. It also examines the key features of music creativity assessment in order to draw parallels between various contexts. The article concludes with a discussion of the implications for classroom practice.
This essay examines how undergraduate composition teachers assess growth in their students’ work, and shows how assessment frameworks (such as rubrics) can be useful for college composition students and professors alike. The essay presents interviews with university composition faculty to establish the assessment strategies generally used in lessons. Next, it looks critically at existing frameworks and assessment philosophies, considering their strengths and shortcomings for departments whose students are growing ever more diverse in musical style and voice. Finally, it considers the composer’s task of designing an assessment framework for his or her studio, including areas of concern and possible starting points for organization.