Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2011-2012 (archived)

Module MUSI40490: Bandmaster Recital

Department: Music

MUSI40490: Bandmaster Recital

Type Tied Level 4 Credits 90 Availability Available in 2011/12 Module Cap None.


  • None.


  • Issues in Performance Practice.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • The introduction of this module forms a key strategic development of the taught MA in Performance in order to address the special interests of students applying from the Brass Band community. This module will appeal to a large number of prospective students and enhance the existing Centre for Brass Band Studies. The aims are:
  • To develop students’ understanding of music and the role of the musician.
  • To develop students’ skills in analyzing, interpreting and performing music.
  • To build on students’ existing skills and experience gained in the brass band community in the theory and practice of conducting.
  • To build on students’ existing skills and experience in the theory and practice of brass band instrumental playing.
  • To build on students’ existing skills and experience in the theory and practice of brass band arranging.
  • To develop students’ knowledge and understanding of the performance of music, with particular focus on their specialist field of brass bands.


  • Lectures, workshops and discussions on related subjects.
  • Written assignments, research and score study.
  • Instrumental playing with theoretical study.
  • Conducting training and practice.
  • Arranging, orchestrating and transcribing for brass band.
  • Study of a wide range of performance subjects and issues drawn from the following topics: repertory, programming, presentation, style, interpretation and performance within the context of competitions.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • By the end of this course students should be able to:
  • 1. Critically assess their own music-making, and the performances of others;
  • 2. Understand concepts and articulate ideas pertaining to the creation and performance of music;
  • 3. Formulate and put into practice the standards required in the preparation and interpretation of musical scores at a professional level;
  • 4. Formulate and effectively articulate musical ideas;
  • 5. Deliver and present performances, both as conductor and as instrumentalist;
  • 6. Organise and motivate themselves and groups of performers of which they form a part;
Subject-specific Skills:
  • 7. Articulate and demonstrate the acquisition of advanced skills in the preparation and performance of musical scores, both as conductor and as instrumentalist;
  • 8. Arrange and score music in a wide variety of styles for brass and percussion to a publishable level;
  • 9. Demonstrate a coherent knowledge of musicological scholarship pertinent to the interpretation and performance of musical works;
Key Skills:
  • 10. Perform as conductors and instrumentalists at an advanced level of technique and understanding;
  • 11. Show awareness of, and sensitivity to, stylistic approaches;
  • 12. Arrive at coherent and sensitive interpretations of musical works, informed by current scholarship;
  • 13. Communicate these interpretations effectively to an ensemble in rehearsal, and to an audience in performance;
  • 14. Show initiative in searching for new repertoire;
  • 15. Critically assess their own performance, and constructively assess those of others;
  • 16. Demonstrate the ability to deploy problem-solving skills in music-making;
  • 17. Read and prepare scores, plan and lead rehearsals, and convey creative intentions interactively through gestures and verbal communication.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • The student will attend weekly classes in a combination of lectures, workshops and masterclasses. The mode of teaching is a combination of lectures, group tutorials and individual supervision with formative exercises with feedback. (LOs 1-6) On-line group discussions and one-to-one email correspondence will be a feature of the module taking into account the special situations of the students who will be living away from Durham. (LOs 1-9) Students will work towards a final examination concert and a portfolio of arrangements. (LOs 10-17).

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Tutorials 16 7/7/2 1 hour 16
Seminars 7 Distributed across the 3 terms 1 hour 7
Instrumental lessons 7 Distributed across the 3 terms 1 hour 7
Preparation and Reading 870

Summative Assessment

Component: Conducting Component Weighting: 33%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Practical A performance of set works in concert situation of 20 minutes duration 75% Yes
Written A marked up score with a written rationale of 1,000 words 25% Yes
Component: Instrumental Playing Component Weighting: 33%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Practical A performance of set works in concert situation of 15 minutes duration 75% yes
Written A 1,000 word essay on the set works 25% Yes
Component: Arranging Component Weighting: 34%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Portfolio A portfolio of arrangements, transcriptions and orchestrations for brass band is to be submitted in September with an accompanying description and rationale (1,000 words) 100% Yes

Formative Assessment:

Weekly assignments with feedback.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University