Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Festival Feedback, Please

The Newfound Music Festival, which had its final concert this past Saturday night, involved more than 100 performers this year, if you include the 4 evening concerts, the student performers concert, and the performance of Terry Riley's "In C" that took place Thursday at 9 AM. We also had 12 presentations on that Thursday, the list of which was posted in my previous blog.

If you figure that everyone involved spent a number of hours preparing for their various performances and presentations, and add in the administrative hours spent planning the event, you could estimate that perhaps over 1000 hours were spent on this year's festival…

All of which begs the question: Do you think the festival is a worthwhile endeavor?

And, while I am at it, here are a few more questions; answer as many or as few as you wish:
  • What concerts did you attend?
  • What did you think of them?
  • What Thursday events did you attend, and what did you think of those you attended?
  • How do you feel about being required to attend some of the Thursday presentations or evening concerts?
  • Would you have attended as many presentations and recitals if you had not been required to do so?
  • Do you have any ideas as to how we could get more students to take in festival events without making them required?
  • Make a rough estimate of the percentage of the students at the School of Music who did not attend any of the Thursday presentations, and/or who attended only one of them.
  • Do you have any suggestions for things you'd like to see/hear at future festivals, or things that you feel could be improved?


Jill A. said...

Because of other commitments and courses outside of the music school I wasn't able to attend as much of the Festival as I wouldhave liked but I highly enjoyed the things I did see.
My favorite event was the "In C" workshop (which i talk about on my blog) i also attended the chamber orchestra's open rehearsal, along with friday night's concert celebrating clifford crawley's 80th birthday. I also liked getting the chance to have experienced composition class with Larysa, it was nice to have another perspective.
I think the festival is a great idea and I know I have highly enjoyed attending it these past few years. Every year offers something new and interesting, and more of the students should take advantage of the opportuity that is offers!

Jon Rowsell said...

I thought the festival this year was great! I attended the Friday and Saturday night concerts as well as a handful of seminars and lectures on thursday. I always really enjoy the evening concerts of Newfound Music for two principle reasons and this year was no exception. Firstly, the variety of music being performed in terms of style and instrumentation is really diverse. This makes every concert soooooooo entertaining. These are the only conerts during the year that offer such great variety. Secondly, the combining of faculty and student performers is nice. It's cool to see students and teachers alike coming together to put off a great show. Clearly I'm not the only one who thinks so since both nights boasted a nearly full house!

Michael Bramble said...

I agree with the In C being a favourite. It was so much fun, and such a joy to play the piece, especially in the morning. It just started the day off on a cheerful and bright note!
The other thing I would like to mention is the Cliff Crawley concert. The 80th Birthday Celebration concert that Newfound Music put on for him easily places in my top 3 concerts I have ever attended so far. Sharing the category (that I can think of) is the Quartet for the End of Time lecture-recital with Dr. Gordon, and Michael Capon's farewell organ recital in Fredericton. It was a truly heart-warming concert full of such fascinating music and very talented musicians. What a great concert!

Kim Codner said...

1) I attended "In C", the panel discussion afterwards about creativity in the classroom, the "interface" spatial music presentation, dr godin's composing for concert band, and the friday night and saturday night concerts. (I would have attended wednesday and thursday but i teach at those times).

My favorite was the "interface" spatial music workshop with Dr Bendza and Rich Blenkinsopp. And I also liked Dr. Godin's presentation about concert band. It will help alot with our next composition project.

I'd say 60% of students who were not required to be at the events were not there. I don't really know how many. It's just an estimate. Most of those are older students who aren't required to attend and feel as if it's a "day off" from music school courses.

To attract more people to the concerts I think maybe there could be a workshop on how to compose music in simple steps or something that would attract those and let people participate and learn at the same time. Maybe that's a dorky solution though... who knows?


Bus said...

Better late then never I guess. I've been looking back on the past semester and this year's New Found Music festival definitely stands out as my favorite of the 4 New Found festivals I've attended in these last 4 years. In C was one of the coolest pieces of music I have ever experienced and working with Larysa was incredibly helpful. Her piece for Chernobyl was absolutely incredible.

Melissa B. said...

I never got to attend much of the festival at all.
Between being very ill and the snow storm the only thing I got to see was the concert I was in!

I remember festivals from before though, and they were always helpful and entertaining. I really enjoy the concerts that are put off. It's great to see everyone (not just faculty and other artists) getting up on stage and presenting fantastic music.

I think we're very lucky to have this at our university. Hopefully it will continue to grow.

Jenn Vail said...

I think we're very lucky to have a festival like this! "In C" is a great piece, and I think it can even be introduced to high school students to explore this type of music - I am a firm believer in letting students explore their own musical ideas and also in promoting an improvisatory learning environment for students. This can even act as a lead-in or sample work for students to base their own compositions on. Have your students write their own variations of this piece - why not use it in a high school band setting?. It can act as a reinforcement of transposing instruments, you can set guidelines for using different rhythms so students show they can write them, show that they understand them...the possibilities are endless!

The concerts that come with this festival are great too - what a treat!

Marlon Dlouhy said...

If music is what you love, then go ahead and study it. There are a lot of music schools out there and one of them is for you. What's great about these schools is they showcase the talents of their students by performing in public places. It's advisable to let children learn about music if it is truly their passion.