Conducting. It’s nothing more than down-left-right-up, telling singers which notes they missed, and preening on stage, right?
Wrong. Oh, so very wrong
. When done correctly, the successful choral conductor melds musicianship, leadership, artistry, and a special intangible something that inspires singers to follow their conductor into the heart of musical and poetic vulnerably. In his article, “Reflections on the Conductors Role
” (North Central Melisma
, Fall 2006), Joseph Flummerfelt, shares a few thoughts on the conductor’s art:
I believe conducting is much more about connection and far less about controlling. To be sure, we strongly influence and, in a certain sense, control the dynamic and energetic properties of the musical line. We clearly set the tempo and determine the timing between sections and movements, etc.
Choral artistry can only emerge when an intimate depth of communication exists between conductor and singer. At the