CCM Director of Orchestral Studies Mark Gibson recently released the paperback edition of The Beat Stops Here: Lessons on and off the Podium for Today’s Conductor, which not only discusses conducting techniques but also provides lessons on score study, musical analysis and the many roles of the modern conductor.
“It is part score analysis, part scholarly thoughts on musical matters, part humorous,” Gibson says. “There is something in it for any and every musician.”
This isn’t Gibson’s first time writing a book; he has collaborated with Elizabeth A. H. Green to produce several editions of The Modern Conductor, an essential conducting text. The Beat Stops Here is less of a textbook and more of Gibson’s personal take on the nuances of his craft, and it stems from his blog of the same name.
“I have accumulated a lot of ideas and writings about conducting and music, many going against conventional wisdom, and I just felt I needed to get them out there.”
Gibson’s musical reach extends well beyond CCM. He is currently the Principal Guest Conductor of the Sichuan Conservatory Symphony Orchestra and a guest conductor and consultant with the China National Opera. Prior to arriving at CCM, Gibson served as the principal conductor of the Alabama Symphony, visiting director of orchestral studies at the Eastman School of Music and music director of the New York City Opera National Company, among many other positions.
“Every time I teach — be it in writing, in class, in rehearsal, in lesson, in guest master classes — I learn,” he says. “That is one of the joys and blessings of teaching.”
The Beat Stops Here: Lessons on and off the Podium for Today’s Conductor is published by Oxford University Press and is available on Amazon in paperback for $29.95 or as a Kindle e-book for $19.99. It will be available in hardcover for $99.00 on Thursday, Feb. 23.
Story by CCM Graduate Student Alexandra Doyle