Saturday, May 31, 2008

Conductors do make a difference

I've just finished watching Nodame Cantabile this early morning. Watched until 3+ am. :p Aside from the very very nice classical music throughout the whole show, there is another important take-away from the show. Conductors do matter.

Conductors bring life to the music, and this person is responsible for controlling the orchestra, and ensuring that they played together, in a manner that they want.

Coming from playing solo guitar, I enjoy playing in an ensemble because of this very reason. I'm sort of fascinated that you can put a group of guitars together, and you can make music that you can never duplicate on a solo guitar.

Not only do you need to play in time, you will need to know how your part fit in to the overall music. Just by looking at the part notes, it's not really possible that you can figure out how your part fits in to the music. The conductor knows, through the understanding of the composer, the era, and of course the conductor score (Yes, I still know nuts about composers and era. :p).

There was also a section in the show that sort of shows conducting can be done through playing. That means the person conducting is doing it by playing the pulse of the music. Quite interesting... I wonder if this can be applied to the sheep song. Hmm...

Anyway, the conducting looks quite good in the show, especially towards the end. Looking at the conducting, it also brings back memories of a certain performance I've seen in the Esplanade on a certain Sunday. The conductor for that performance was basically, in my opinion, making a fool of himself. I have no idea you can conduct music by acting like a snake, and doing stupid movements, that at times do not even sync with the orchestra.

Many times during the 1 hour performance, I really wanted to laugh out loud. What is most surprising is that some people in the hall are actually giving standing ovation for this kind of conducting.

I guess the maturity of the Singapore audience needs leveling up too.

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