From composer and co-author Chris Bernotas:
“In using Sound Innovations: Ensemble Development for Intermediate Concert Band I have found the variety of exercises to be tremendously beneficial. Every day, I am able to approach specific ensemble concepts with new material. It isn’t the same exercise over and over or simply transposed to a new key. Every exercise is unique. Even when I do repeat an exercise, it is “like new” because I do not find myself having to repeat that “one” exercise that really works, they ALL work! I also find that I can use just one exercise to create a variety of new exercises for my students by adding dynamics, modifying articulations, changing tempo, and the like. I think this variety is unique to Sound Innovations: Ensemble Development for Intermediate Concert Band. The other thing I have found is that the exercises work really well in small group lessons. The technical and musical exercises are fun and interesting, and again, are not just one exercise transposed.
The chorales really speak for themselves, they are truly beautiful! They are more than just functional – they are little musical gems by wonderful composers. Using this book in rehearsals, we have the chance to end our warm-up by making beautiful music with them. The scale chorales are especially useful and flexible; directors can choose who will play the scale and who will play the chorale, making an infinite number of possibilities. Each of these beautiful chorales is a perfect segue to rehearsing the literature for the day.
Sound Innovations: Ensemble Development for Intermediate Concert Band has been an invaluable resource in my band room. The exercises are fresh, innovative and effective. I have heard an amazing transformation from my students as they have grown immensely in their understanding of how to perform as an ensemble. In the past I would have to write these exercises on the board, make a “ditto”, or try to describe them verbally for students. Now, all I have to do is give them the exercise numbers and get to work! And the best part is that I hear them applying these ensemble concepts to our concert literature!
Most importantly, my students really love using these books and so do I!”
About the Book:
Sound Innovations: Ensemble Development for Intermediate Concert Band is a valuable and comprehensive resource for developing your students’ understanding and abilities as ensemble musicians. It covers numerous aspects of individual and ensemble playing – tone quality & breath support, scales & technique, balance & intonation, rhythm reading & meter studies, and ensemble musicianship, and includes more than 70 chorales by some of today’s most renowned concert band composers including Roland Barrett, Andrew Boysen, Ralph Ford, Rossano Galante, Robert Sheldon, Todd Stalter, Randall Standridge, and Michael Story. An assortment of exercises is grouped by key and presented in a variety of intermediate difficulty levels. Where possible, several exercises in the same category are provided to allow variety, while still accomplishing the goals of that specific type of exercise. Many of the exercises and chorales are clearly marked with dynamics, articulations, style, and tempo for students to practice those aspects of performance, while others are intentionally left flexible for the teacher to determine how best to use them in facilitating and addressing the needs and goals of their ensemble. Whether your students are progressing through exercises to better their technical facility, or challenging their musicianship with beautiful chorales, this book can be used after any band method or as a supplement to performance music.
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