Come give us a try!
The NYLSO Ensemble-Playing Workshop is a small-group ensemble that began in Spring of 2014. The group is structured to help near-beginner to lower-intermediate level players develop group-playing ensemble and real-time music-reading skills. Most participants come to the Ensemble Workshop having taken lessons, but with little or no previous experience playing in a group. Sessions are held Sundays from 2 to 3 pm, immediately before the regular NYLSO Orchestra rehearsals and are structured to accommodate both NYLSO Orchestra members and non-members. The size of the group varies, with usually between six and twelve participants. An experienced NYLSO member, Ron, serves as group facilitator and helps lead the group, though we do not play with a conductor.
Drop-ins are always welcome, but since this is a skills-building group, consistent participation is encouraged. Cost for the Workshop is $10 per session. If Workshop participants are interested in checking out the full NYLSO Orchestra, but are not sure whether they are ready, they are welcome to sit in on the 3-5p Orchestra rehearsal as observers at no additional cost.
Occasionally, the orchestra and the ensemble will play a shared selection, with both groups working on the same piece of music during a cycle. When this is the case, the Ensemble Workshop participants will occasionally be invited to join the NYLSO Orchestra for the first part of their rehearsal at 3:00 to work on the shared selection together. This way Ensemble participants can have the opportunity to play along with the larger orchestra and experience working with a conductor, as well as to help participants gauge their ongoing readiness to join the full orchestra. Workshop participants are encouraged to join the orchestra as regular members or as drop-ins whenever they feel comfortable with the demands of the more advanced repertoire of the orchestra.
Location: Studio 353
353 W 48th Street
2nd Fl between 8th & 9th Ave
New York, NY
- TTo improve our music reading skills: to advance toward basic sight-reading skills. ·
- To develop ensemble: to learn to listen to the whole group; keep tempo together without a conductor; bow in unison.
- To improve intonation: listen and know when we're off pitch; know whether we're sharp or flat and how to correct.
What it’s not ·
- It’s not a violin, viola, cello, or bass lesson: although we will often explore aspects of technique, we will not be giving instruction. Participants should already know the basics of how to play their instruments.
- It’s not a music lesson: Participants will need basic music reading ability, know the notes and be able to count rhythm.
Who it’s for ·
- Relatively new or returning players who are not sure whether they are ready to join a larger orchestra
- Players who want to improve reading and listening skills, with or without the goal to move into the full NYLSO Orchestra in the future
- Active NYLSO members who want to improve reading and listening skills and/or warm up for 3:00 rehearsal
What we’ll play
- Specially arranged short pieces with a variety of difficulty levels (all easy or moderately easy)
- We will generally focus on three to six pieces each cycle
- New pieces are introduced at the beginning of each cycle
- Generally, one or more of the pieces is a shared selection which both the NYLSO Orchestra and the Ensemble Workshop will both be working on during the same cycle
... and now, our secret weapon for rapid musical growth:
Unlike conventional single-instrument orchestral parts, all our music is arranged showing all four parts—violin 1, violin 2, viola, and cello (like choral music). In addition, there is another unique feature: Each part—not just your part, but all four parts—will be transposed into your clef and range. This way not only can everyone see what each part is playing, but each player, no matter what instrument, can actually play any one of the four parts. (This might seem a little complicated, but trust me, it’s easy to get the hang of.)
Why we do this:
not just their own part—they begin to listen more deeply, and hear not just the notes in their own part but the music as a whole. This, in turn, helps improve intonation, musical cohesion, and rhythm. In addition, it allows us to play in full four-part harmony no matter which instruments are represented on any given day.
We invite you to visit our group and give us a try!
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you think this group might be for you and please pass this on to anyone you think may be interested.