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Andrea Ramsey on Her Newly Commissioned Work, “But a Flint Holds Fire” in Support of the Flint Water Crisis

September 26, 2016 -

I was recently introduced to an article on the Michigan ACDA website (editor, Jed Scott). It was an interview with composer Andrea Ramsey about her recently commissioned work, “But a Flint Holds Fire.” The piece was composed for a Chorus America consortium project and is part of an effort to raise awareness

Several times over the past few months, issues of pitch-matching have come up - sometimes troublesome, challenging issues of finding "something to do" for enthusiastic students who can't sing in tune. I had a situation like that, some years back. This particular student, now leading a military men's choral ensemble, replied: "I'm honored to be used as an example in your teaching! I think one of the techniques that helped me understand pitch the most, when I was still not hitting the right notes, was matching the piano to whatever pitch I was singing. I'd try to keep a single pitch in my voice, which isn't hard to do, and then hit keys one by one on the piano until I felt the resonance, which is quite distinct. Once I comprehended that sensation in my ear, I could set it a goal to match my voice to the piano, instead of the other way around. I hope that helps." ... See MoreSee Less

2 hours ago

Betsy Baeskens Giri, Kathea Yarnell and 1 other like this

Betsy Baeskens GiriHelen Kemp writes of exactly this technique in "Of Primary Importance," the section for helping students who do not match pitch. The student sings a note, and the teacher matches it, rather than the other way around. I have used this with good results many times.

10 minutes ago   ·  1
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Laurie Betts HughesYes!!! This has worked with students: they lead the pitch matching-- I match them, and piano matches them, and they keep a staff paper with "their notes" (dated) that we build upon over time. Works well.

9 minutes ago   ·  1
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