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Maestro Mark Gibson Unveils An Upbeat Conducting Compendium

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.”

thebeatstopshereGibson’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.

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Story by CCM Graduate Student Alexandra Doyle

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A tanguero performance in Buenos Aries. Photo provided by Kristin Wendland.

Tracing Tangueros: Alumna Co-Authors First English Study on Argentine Tango Music

During her first trip to Argentina over the holidays in 2000 Kristin Wendland (MM Composition, 1982) began exploring the complex relationship between dance and music in the Argentine tango. The interest she developed in the subject during that brief trip has blossomed into what can surely be called expertise. Wendland and her co-author, Kacey Link, just completed the first English-language foundational study on the tango, called Tracing Tangueros: Argentine Tango Instrumental Music.

Argentine Tango Ensemble Concert at Schwartz Center. Photo provided by Kristin Wendland.

Argentine Tango Ensemble Concert at Schwartz Center. Photo provided by Kristin Wendland.

After that initial trip to Argentina, Wendland began the research alone and returned to Buenos Aires for seven months in 2005 as a Fulbright Scholar.

“In that time, I absorbed many elements of Argentine culture, especially the music, through attending countless concerts and getting to know tango musicians,” Wendland said.

Those tango musicians are the tangueros mentioned in the title. Anyone with an expertise in tango, especially a tango musician or dancer, is a tanguero, or aficionado. After essentially becoming a tanguero herself, Wendland shared her knowledge in an article published in the College Music Symposium in 2007 titled “The Allure of Tango: Grafting Traditional Performance Practice and Style onto Art-Tangos.”

That same year, Wendland was invited to direct the College Music Society’s Tango Institute, where she met Kacey Link. They began to work together at the conference and eventually developed their ideas on tango into a book proposal. It took more than four years for that proposal to materialize into Tracing Tangueros, which was published by Oxford University Press in March.

Wendland has balanced the role of researcher and author while teaching as a senior lecturer at Emory University in Atlanta, where she coaches the Emory Tango Ensemble and teaches courses in Argentine tango, among other subjects.

Tracing Tangueros covers not only how to perform and interpret tangos authentically but also the genre’s historical development and guidelines to composing or arranging tangos. The book is supplemented by an extensive companion website, which includes musical recordings and videos that demonstrate tango performance practices. It is being sold in hardcover and ebook editions through the Oxford University Press.

“Kacey and I saw a need to write this book, since many musicians outside of Argentina are interested in playing tango music but really don’t know how to interpret it stylistically,” Wendland said.

“We hope it will give practicing musicians and scholars a solid stylistic basis to study, play, arrange and compose the music, while giving a more general reader an understanding of its history. We also hope it will lay the groundwork for future tango studies.”
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Story by CCM graduate student Alexandra Doyle

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After Making the Transition from the Theatre to the Courtroom, Alumnus Darrell Miller Prepares his First Book on ‘The 16th Minute of Fame’

CCM alumnus Darrell D. Miller.

Alumnus Darrell Miller took the lessons he learned at CCM and used them to become one of the world’s leading entertainment attorneys.

CCM alumnus Darrell D. Miller (BFA, 1985) has worked with some of the biggest names in music, television and film … but probably not in the capacity that is typically expected of musical theatre graduates.

After completing his studies at Cincinnati’s School for Creative and Performing Arts (SCPA), Miller came to CCM intent on pursuing a career in voice performance and musical theatre. Early professional experience with the Civic Light Opera (CLO) in Pittsburgh left Miller well-poised for success on Broadway.

Miller graduated from UC with honors in 1985. Tours with several national production companies followed, along with a lead role in the jazz opera Leo and an international tour of the musical The Princess and the Pea, before Miller decided to take his career in a slightly different direction.

In 1990, Miller received his Juris Doctor from the Georgetown University Law Center, and he has gone on to become one of the world’s leading entertainment attorneys, working in film, television, theatre and digital media.

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In Honor of Valentine’s Day, CCM Library Shares a Heart-Shaped Book for Lovers

Le Chansonnier Cordiforme is perhaps the most beautiful of all surviving music manuscripts.

Le Chansonnier Cordiforme is perhaps the most beautiful of all surviving music manuscripts.

In honor of St. Valentine’s Day this Friday, the CCM Library and the UC Archives and Rare Books Library present an item from the Rare Books Collection, Le Chansonnier Cordiforme, or Chansonnier de Jean de Montchenu.

The original manuscript dates from the 1470s and is owned by the Bibliothèque de France (Ms. Occ. Rothschild 2973). The UC Libraries’ copy is a facsimile of the original, bound in red velvet and created by Vicent García Editores of Valencia, Spain in 2007.

Le Chansonnier Cordiforme is perhaps the most beautiful of all surviving music manuscripts. Its first owner was the French nobleman Jean de Montchenu (d. 1497), who commissioned the work. It was compiled during the 1470s and contains 43 songs from the preceding thirty years by Guillaume Dufay, Gilles de Binchois, Johannes Ockeghem, Antoine Busnoys and other contemporary composers.

The entire manuscript was performed by the Consort of Musicke in 1980, the recordings of which are held in the CCM Library.

You can learn more about this remarkable manuscript by visiting LiBlog, the blog of the University of Cincinnati Libraries!

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CCM Professor’s Book, ‘The Symphonic Repertoire – Vol. 1,’ Was a Decade in the Making

CCM Professor of Musicology Mary Sue Morrow.

CCM Professor of Musicology Mary Sue Morrow.

For the last 10 years, CCM professor Mary Sue Morrow has dedicated herself to completing her late mentor’s series of books.

Weighing in at nearly 900 pages, the Symphonic Repertoire – Volume I may be the first of its kind. Other literature on the 18th century symphony just skims the surface of the era.

“We looked at symphonies by many different composers,” says Morrow. “Mozart and Haydn were not the only symphony composers in the 18th century.” The massive volume includes essays by Morrow and her co-editor, Bathia Churgin, and 20 other scholars.

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