Introduction to Improvisation - Fall 2019 - Dr. Noam Sivan
(THY405-1 FA19)

In recent years, dozens of Curtis students have taken improvisation to improve their playing and musicianship in their solo, chamber, or orchestral careers. The ability to improvise is one of the most essential skills for the performing musician. Among its numerous benefits, improvisation–

• develops confidence in mastering one’s own instrument or voice

• stimulates the imagination and encourages creativity

• builds communicative skills and stage presence in performing for an audience

• combines being present while thinking ahead and develops better time perception

• enhances chamber playing as it requires sensitive listening while improvising

• expands the performer’s expressive range beyond the written notes

• improves musical memory, especially through call and response exercises

No prior experience in improvisation is needed. Participants will develop ensemble interaction, listening while improvising, compositional thinking, harmonic imagination, melodic creativity, textural variety, and awareness to form, exploration, as they learn to improvise on their instruments. We will work on several projects during the semester, covering modal, tonal, and atonal/free styles.