what the hell is "positive articulation"?

Posted by: ToriAnais

what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 01:19 AM

I recently had the joyous experience of putting a kid in for an exam when he was a transfer student who had learnt half his program with a different teacher. A teacher who didn't bother correcting fingering or flat fingers or really...anything from what I can tell. Even the scales were just a made up fingering of the students - 1 2 3 4 1 2 4 1 2 3 4 god it was a nightmare.

ANYWAY.

He did ok in the exam considering - a B, but one of the comments I didn't understand. "Needs more positive articulation", or something like that. Is this about the fact that he plays with flat fingers so the notes sometimes run into each other (this is so hard to change!) or something else?
Posted by: Opus_Maximus

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 01:23 AM

Not a very specific comment....what was the context?
Posted by: ToriAnais

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 01:28 AM

It was the comment for one of his pieces in a grade 1 AMEB exam. Unfortunately I can't remember which one as I only got to have a quick glance over the comments.
Posted by: currawong

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 05:50 AM

As someone who's had lots of experience interpreting AMEB exam reports smile I'd say the examiner was saying there wasn't enough attention to phrasing and articulation details like staccato, legato, slurs, accents. Maybe the fingerwork on the whole was a bit sloppy instead of clear.
Posted by: keyboardklutz

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 05:56 AM

I agree with currawong.
Posted by: ToriAnais

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 05:58 AM

Ahhh. I wish they were a bit more specific hey! The comments were very sparse, especially when you consider how much it costs to sit these exams.

One of the comments was "lacking in energy" which made me laugh because i know this kid CAN play the piece very energetically with lots of style but when he's showing off and being arrogant he plays it half heartedly like *man I'm so too good for this piece*, and I bet he played it like that in the exam thinking it would impress the examiner. I told him not to so I'm glad the comments backed me up that it just sounds silly!
Posted by: currawong

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 05:59 AM

Originally Posted By: keyboardklutz
I agree with currawong.
Yay!!!!!!! smile
Posted by: keyboardklutz

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 06:02 AM

I think it's a shame we're not allowed to sit in. I don't see why not, and it would really help. For us it's a formative assessment, for the examiner summative.
Posted by: Morodiene

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 05:23 PM

Originally Posted By: keyboardklutz
I think it's a shame we're not allowed to sit in. I don't see why not, and it would really help. For us it's a formative assessment, for the examiner summative.


that's the one advantage of being my voice students' accompanist: I get to hear how they did rather than try to piece it together from the student's description and the judge's comments. Of course, that means a lot of playing that day for me!
Posted by: currawong

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 08:38 PM

Originally Posted By: Morodiene
that's the one advantage of being my voice students' accompanist: I get to hear how they did rather than try to piece it together from the student's description and the judge's comments.
When I accompany people for exams, the teacher is usually hovering outside the door waiting to ambush me and say "how did he go? what did he do? what was it like?" smile
Posted by: Mrs.A

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 09:24 PM

Mitts Off. I always chuckly when I read your posts and I love your screen name!

I have a judge critique for you too… What the hell does “secure memorization” mean?

Every year I take 20 or so students to a state music audition. It is a large event and a handful of my students inevitably get a particular judge who often writes “secure memorization”. That is it - secure memorization.

Does she mean the student needs to secure the memorization or the memorization IS secure. …

Those students always receive very high marks so I assume she is commenting that it is well memorized.. Why even comment that the piece is memorized. They are being critiqued on so much more than memory.

She is the only one who I have seen make this comment and is always a confusing statement.
Posted by: currawong

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/08/09 11:41 PM

Originally Posted By: Mrs.A
Every year I take 20 or so students to a state music audition. It is a large event and a handful of my students inevitably get a particular judge who often writes “secure memorization”. That is it - secure memorization.
Does she mean the student needs to secure the memorization or the memorization IS secure. …
Ha ha. That's like the road signs which say "WORKMEN DRIVE SLOWLY" or "FALLING ROCKS DO NOT STOP", to mention two which regular appear in my vicinity.
Once my local newspaper was reporting on talks which were going on to come to some agreement about limiting the impact of coal trucks on the roads, and the headline said: "COAL TRUCK TALKS" ... grin
Posted by: keyboardklutz

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/09/09 06:36 AM

Originally Posted By: Morodiene
Originally Posted By: keyboardklutz
I think it's a shame we're not allowed to sit in. I don't see why not, and it would really help. For us it's a formative assessment, for the examiner summative.


that's the one advantage of being my voice students' accompanist: I get to hear how they did rather than try to piece it together from the student's description and the judge's comments. Of course, that means a lot of playing that day for me!
I do that for clarinets, flutes, trumpets, violin and voice (in voice I also accompany the exercise (Dodds pg 7)). It's a real help diagnosing. One of my students in his grade 3 voice acted like a real clown!
Posted by: Minniemay

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/09/09 07:48 PM

I know why parents and teachers aren't allowed into the auditions. It's because, all too often, the judge is accosted, yelled at and even physically threatened when said teacher or parent is upset with the result. Sad, but true.
Posted by: keystring

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/09/09 08:34 PM

Quote:
I know why parents and teachers aren't allowed into the auditions. It's because, all too often, the judge is accosted, yelled at and even physically threatened when said teacher or parent is upset with the result. Sad, but true.

But don't you get the results four weeks later in the mail? confused
Posted by: currawong

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/09/09 09:04 PM

Originally Posted By: keystring
But don't you get the results four weeks later in the mail? confused
Depends on the exam. Here in Oz it's straight away, as you walk out the door.
Posted by: ToriAnais

Re: what the hell is "positive articulation"? - 08/10/09 02:29 AM

Ha ha thanks Mrs A!! "secure memorization" I take to be a compliment. To me it means that not only has the student hit all the right notes in the right order, but they have done so confidently, remembering all dynamics and markings and playing with a musical depth that can only come with being very familiar with a piece.