Saturday, November 13

Tony Thornton

Westminster's November 13 Saturday Seminars will offer practical insights for choral conductors, classroom music teachers and performing artists.

The Dynamic Choral Rehearsal: Part 1

The roles and responsibilities of the conductor vary from organization to organization, yet it involves much more than mere “hand waving.” The main responsibility of the conductor is to inspire the chorus to musical greatness in the rehearsals and performance. Tony Thornton, Director of Choral Activities at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, will lead this exciting two-part seminar, which will explore the various rehearsal, vocal, and conducting techniques that are essential to creating a dynamic choral rehearsal. Seminar participants will leave the workshop with practical skill-building exercises and resources that are appropriate for all levels of development.
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Stop or I’ll Say Stop Again: A Critical Pedagogy Look at Classroom Management
This seminar will provide elementary music teachers with a practical resource for implementing an effective classroom management plan.  A no-nonsense, good-humored approach to the most common classroom management problems will be offered and illustrated through anecdotes from the clinician’s own experiences and those of her colleagues. Drawing from the tenants of Critical Pedagogy for Music Education, and on 15 years of classroom music teaching in a variety of settings, Amanda Clarfield Newell will speak to the needs of all teachers who struggle to find ways to reach the students in their music classes including ways to promote a positive classroom climate while empowering students to make good choices.
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Optimum Performance Techniques: An Interactive Presentation
This seminar, presented by Margret Elson, is in three parts. The morning session is devoted to learning and practicing the principles described in her book, Passionate Practice: The Musician’s Guide to Learning, Memorizing and Performing.  This guide to optimum performance includes simple, concrete steps to incorporate mental, physical and technical ease into practicing. Learning, memorizing and performing are thereby enhanced, and performance anxiety ameliorated.  Participants will practice as they learn in a casual, upbeat atmosphere.

The afternoon will be a problem-solving clinic where individual musical problems that any participant wishes to discuss will be addressed.  The seminar closes with a master class.
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