Orchestral conducting technique: Incorrect patterns

A correct pattern has to guarantee to EVERY single beat of the bar a character of independence and neutrality;

the conductor  will  then  group them together again to produce the sound he wants and   to create the musical continuity.  The patterns we have been discussing,  guarantee a basic neutrality due to the fact that  the same identical gesture  is repeated at  the various points of the musical structure.

Unfortunately, we often see patterns which have not got these characteristics : I must say, to my  great surprise that ,   I have seen  some of the best orchestras in the world,  (who can generally perform  without paying  too much attention to the conductor ),  unconsciously reflect  these negative traits.

Among the patterns of the staccato (many schools ignore the difference between pattern for staccato and legato) this is certainly the most popular , and unfortunately it is found in almost all of the handbooks   and videos available on youtube

 

 

 

apparently it gives the impression of being very clear, actually  in reality it provides a very  a confusing indication  of tempo.

THE GREAT DEFECT OF THIS PATTERN  IS THE ABSOLUTE LACK OF IMPACT AT THE  DIFFERENT POINTS ON THE IMAGINARY SURFACE,

therefore the eye of the musician engaged in reading his/her part does not detect  the beats because  in reality they are actually missing. They are there, but only  at the level of the conductor’s mental intention, their externalisation is not as evident as one would like to believe (the players  generally unconsciously correct this gap).

it is interesting to understand how the eye of the musician engaged in reading the score perceives gestures

Here you can see the 4 pattern in a famous passage

Because of this a wrong pattern can cause imbalances during perfomance , which happens in the following video

 

Next annual course in Italy, Palermo/Rome November’18 – June’19 in collaboration with  Opera in Rome Symphony Orchestra

 

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