Write a 600-900 word concert critique

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Give the context (background and general information) for the performance. The most important part of your review should consist of your thoughts and impressions of the entire experience. Explain why you did or did not enjoy the performance. Do not simply write “I liked the performance because the music was pretty.” Instead, explain why you enjoyed performances or did not. Be specific–use composer’s names and specific information. For example:

  • The review should include a brief paragraph on each piece or movement performed. Include the composer, historical notes and your impression. Think: 3-4 sentences on each piece or movement.
  • Did the melodies of the pieces linger in your memory for days afterwards?
  • Could you “tap your toe” to the rhythms?
  • Were you awed by the technical skill of the performers?
  • What is architecture of the performance space?
  • How did the audience react to the performance?
  • Was the printed programs helpful (and why)?
  • Site the printed program as a source.

Also, your review will include, but not be limited to the following points:

A brief historical description of the pieces performed. Include a brief discussion of the composer’s life and career at the time of the composition. Mention each piece performed in the concert. Give your response or impression of the piece. Use musical terms learned in this course in your review.

Other items that you may include in your concert critique may include:

  • When did it premiere? Where? (Historically)
  • Was the premiere a success or a failure?
  • Are the pieces performed considered standard repertory today, or are they obscure?
  • An assessment of the audience’s reaction. (Did people around you fall asleep? Was the audience mesmerized? Was everyone coughing and shuffling, or could you have heard a pin drop because the audience was so taken by the experience?)
  • Did you feel that the performers met the challenges of the piece? (If possible, you might listen to a CD recording or watch a video performance of the piece before the concert. You will then be able to make an accurate and appropriate comparison.)
  • Would you buy a CD of this particular piece? Why or why not?
  • Would you give a copy of this piece as a gift to a friend? Why or why not?

Your reviews will constitute 10% of your final grade. See Class calendar/assignment instructions for dues dates. Remember 600-800 quality words in length.





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