Category Archives: Guidelines

Chamber Music Workshop Guidelines

Welcome to our weekly coached chamber music program.  This post contains the information you need to prepare and get maximum enjoyment and benefit from your experience.  Your playing partners will thank you.

Examine the 12-week schedule

We’ll send you a PDF of the 12-week schedule.  You can also find it here.

  • Make note of your scheduled playing dates on your own calendar.
  • If you have an interest in preparing something for performance, or simply want to delve deeply into a piece of music, check to see whether (a) you’ve been assigned to a group that meets on more than one occasion; or (b) you’ve been assigned to a configuration (e.g. Baroque Trio) on more than one occasion, but with changes to the personnel of the group.
Communicate with the other players in your assigned group by email before you meet.

(We’ll provide you with a contact list.)

  • Is your group meeting just once or on multiple occasions?
  • Will you be playing through the whole piece or concentrating on one or two movements?
  • Which edition are you playing from?
  • Does anyone need a part?
  • Who is already familiar with the piece?
Obtain the music you are playing.
  • If you don’t own it, look for it on www.imslp.org (Petrucci Music Library).  If the music is in the public domain, you’re likely to find it there and you can download and print your part.
  • Pencil in your measure numbers if they’re not preprinted.  It’s highly likely that members of your group will be playing from different editions, so rehearsal letters may be absent or inconsistent.  Having measure numbers will greatly improve your experience and cut down on much wasted search time.  For a guide on best practices in measure counting, consult this handy page on the website of the Chamber Music Conference of the East.
Read through the music at home
  • Even if you can’t find time to learn your part thoroughly, avoid sight-reading at the coached session.  Your playing partners will appreciate it, as will you!
When you arrive
  • Come to the right place. Here’s where to find us.
  • Park on the street if our lot is full.  Street parking on San Anselmo Avenue or Belle Avenue is unrestricted on Sundays.
  • Come early. Playing at a 10:00 am workshop starts at 10:00, so please arrive at least 10 minutes earlier to unpack and get set up.
  • Find the storage area. Since playing space can be tight, we designate one room each week where you should put cases and coats.
When you finish
  • Feel free to continue playing without your coach.
  • Arrange chamber music dates outside the school.  Part of our job is to help you find each other.
  • And check out the offerings at MH Bread & Butter, the neighborhood bakery across the street.  There’s always an excellent lunch, bread, and pastries.  Not cheap, but worth it.