Guidelines for students

Designed for high school elective music students or older on band/orchestral instruments, or tuned percussion.

Preliminary discussion
❁What makes a musical score a score? What is the composer indicating? Why is it necessary?
❁What is rhythm? Where else do you see rhythm, other than music?
❁What hierarchies are present when playing in band/orchestra? What does structures/hierarchies does this reflect in society (e.g. a democracy)? Why are these necessary?
❁ This score uses video as an alternative to traditional music notation. Spend some time watching the video score.
❁ Can you see the movement of the video as rhythm?
❁ Can you see the movement of the video as a conductor? How does your conductor tell you to play softly, or loudly?
❁ What about delicately, confidently, or sweetly?
❁ Does it make you think of any notes or melodies?

Let’s try playing it!
❁ Choose one note from concert B, C, E, F, G for each clip (alternate option: use concert B flat pentatonic scale)
❁ Play the rhythms you noticed before on this note. At first, you can do this by changing the articulation, or by using vibrato, tremolo or any other expressive technique you know.
❁ If you thought of any melodies before, you can add these too. Remember to keep it simple and stay within the recommended notes. Focusing on only two or three notes will be easiest.
❁ If you’re playing an instrument that can play multiple notes at once, feel free to add additional notes to form a chord from the suggested notes.
❁ Change the note each time the score loops.
❁ Change the dynamic and character of the note in line with the movements of the plants (they are your conductor!)
❁ Listen to the musicians you are playing with – does your note sound good with theirs? Make some changes if you need to.

Further development:
❁ Try performing the score again – notice how it changes each time you perform it.
❁ Can you listen really hard to the other musicians and form patterns and chords yourselves?
❁ Do you think the sounds you made matched the image? Is the image noisy and brash, or calm and serene? What about your sounds? Think about ways you can alter this.
❁ Which part was the loudest? Which were the softest? Was everyone playing the same dynamic? It's ok if not - maybe you were looking at something different!
❁ Consider how you will repeat or vary your playing as the score continues. Can you remember what note you played last time? What would change if you came back to the same note each time, or didn’t?
❁ Think about how this would change the structure of the piece.
❁ Would anyone like to share a solo performance? How is the experience different if you are playing alone or with a group? Which did you like better?

Final discussions:
❁ What hierarchy do you notice in how this work is structured? How is it different to playing in band/orchestra normally?
❁ What else could be a score? How does this work change what a score is?
❁ Take a look at the reading list section of the website for additional works that look at these ideas.