An afternoon of music director master classes are set for Chelsea Studios today, June 25 from 12 to 8 p.m., organized by TheatreMusicDirectors.org and moderated by David J. Hahn (Associate Conductor: On a Clear Day You Can See Forever, Priscilla Queen of the Desert).
Taught by the best and brightest Broadway music directors, this master class series is designed to share best practices for the music director industry in a collegial workshop atmosphere. Purchase tickets to individual classes or buy an all day ticket for a reduced price.
Space is limited, so purchase tickets as soon as possible to guarantee a place. Click here to register.
Conducting from the Piano
Instructor: Joseph Church (Music Director: The Lion King, The Who's Tommy, Associate Conductor: In the Heights; Assistant Conductor: Sister Act)
This class will examine skills and circumstances peculiar to conducting a stage show from the piano, covering both scores written for a piano/conductor and orchestra reductions. The focus will be communicating a maximum of information with a minimum of gesture. Techniques of conducting with the hands, the head, and with breath and facial expression will be demonstrated and analyzed. Issues of audio and video monitoring will also be discussed. The format of the class will be a short lecture, followed by an opportunity for 10-12 attendees to play and conduct for the class, with the instructor's critique.
Time: 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Music Technology for the Theatre - A Guide to What Music Directors Need to Know
Instructor: Jeff Marder (Synth Programmer: Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Newsies, Leap of Faith; Associate Conductor: Guys and Dolls, Priscilla Queen of the Desert; Assistant Conductor: Leap of Faith)
In this workshop we will focus on synthesizer programming and will give an overview of the synth programming technology commonly in use at the present time. Participants will learn the basics of what the various pieces of hardware and software are used for, in addition to gaining a greater understanding of how these things affect the sound of a show. Also covered, but with a lesser emphasis, will be the role of sound design. This workshop is not intended to be a tutorial in the use of these various technologies, but rather a guide to what music directors need to know to effectively interact with the synthesizer programming and sound design in order to facilitate a seamless collaborative process.
Time: 2:30pm - 4:30pm
Styles at Play
Instructor: Sonny Paladino (Music Supervisor: High School Musical (Milan/Italy Tour); Assistant Conductor: Jesus Christ Superstar, Grease)
Musical Theatre today is not what it used to be. For the first 50 years or so music for most American theatre was simple: a beautiful melody, some interesting chord changes, and you were set. The rhythm was decided: either it had a two-feel or it was a sweeping ballad. Today musical theatre music embraces so many different styles of music. So how does one master all these styles? One show we're playing 60's Soul, the next show we're steeped in Disco, next thing you know we're groovin' to salsa, and what's that Hip-Hop!? Styles At Play will help you discover different approaches to getting down to the essential elements of the styles at play within the play. We will look at ways to break down different styles to find what actually makes them groove. After this class you will be prepared for whatever show and whatever style comes your way!
Time: 4:45pm - 6:45pm
Q&A Session with John Miller
A Q&A session with Broadway's busiest music contractor, John Miller (Music Contractor: Newsies, Jersey Boys, Jesus Christ Superstar, Once, Porgy and Bess, Sister Act, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, and Godspell). Introduce yourself and ask John about his experience with music directors on Broadway.
**This session is free and open to the public, but you MUST have a (free) ticket to attend. Tickets are guaranteed to anyone purchasing a full-day ticket to the master classes. All remaining tickets, if any, will be released on June 22nd at 5pm.