After The Pandemic, What?
The simple answer, VIDEO.
People want to see us play. Some go to concerts, some stay home, but most people listen mostly or partially with their eyes. They want to see us in the act of creation and doing something that most of the time is not edited or sidelined.
Just go to YouTube, and look for your favorite musician, and they are likely there. Or look up your favorite piece of music, it is probably there. Lookup a teacher on your instrument or style of music and it is definitely there.
I went to YouTube and entered Brahms and Clarinet, and I stopped counting at 30 entries. Just one example. There are some more challenging entries that may have only one video file. However, I think you get the idea. And that is but one of many video sites that have music videos that you can see. These sites are so ubiquitous that I don’t have any idea of how many are available.
With the idea of video editing, plenty of what you see is sidelined (the musicians pretend to play, along with their pre-recorded music). But by the same token, there is plenty of live performed, videotaped performances.
The videotape performances are where you can tell, like the opening of the Rite of Spring by Stravinsky, where a musician might have to sweat a bit on their first note. Some people like that. The feeling of a Porsche going full bore down an icy mountain road. You can see the performer emote or react to the music as it is played.
In the commercial area to include television, and motion pictures, many if not most of the composers are so adept at the synthesizer, and its many sounds, that they pretty much write the whole score and then send it via email to a few soloists that add their part to be sent back to the composer to get a more “real” feeling to the music. Will this be the future after the pandemic? We all hope not, but many composers have found that this is an easier way to create products and not have to deal with the personalities of 80 musicians in one room.
Perhaps you have seen a split-screen with one person playing multiple parts. This technique existed before the pandemic but rapidly became a way for musicians to express themselves and get their musical message to the public. And that is even with the knowledge that they had to learn both audio recording, and video recording, and the editing of both disciplines. Or hire someone to do it for them.
It seems this is a mandatory addition to be added to teaching music, theater, and even video art.
Schools have always been a few years behind in adding new subject matter to the curriculum, simply because the teachers and administrators are so busy with their jobs, they don’t have time to experiment with new techniques. I will say that a few colleges have this type of study but not nearly enough. In addition, many young people are learning on their own with their adeptness on the computer from a very young age. So how early should these types of study begin?
So, many of you with positions in the music performance arena will not have to deal with the idea of recording yourself with both audio and video. However, those musicians not ensconced with a position in a group of some kind or as a soloist will benefit from the new techniques for learning, performing, and educating.
I have found that despite the frustrations of starting at the beginning of strange new techniques to help myself, there is a big payoff to having the knowledge.
As a musician for over 50 years, and feeling mostly comfortable on my instruments, the frustration is more about the time it takes to learn alien programs, than the intent of learning something new and making mistakes like a beginner again. It doesn’t have to take the place of practicing but can enhance practicing just by taking a little time to add something new.
Give it some thought. Are you willing to take on a new challenge that will enhance your music (you will listen and see differently), or do you want to stay where you are, doing what you are doing, at the speed you are doing it?
I guarantee you, that the extra hour or two it takes to add new skills is worth the enhancement to your understanding.
I learned or should I say am learning, from private teachers, as at my age school seems a bit difficult, and private lessons give much more information in an hour than a school class can give simply by how many students need their questions answered.
I hope you will embrace this change that is bound to become more of the norm in the years to come.
And by the way, you can see my most recent videos on YouTube:
This is an interview with Ken McCarthy and the Jazz on the Tube Podcast about my career.
This is a homemade video that I filmed and edited, on Starting Music, which is for those thinking about starting a music study, young and older students, and teachers. Also included is the idea of the importance of piano as part of music study.
A Closing Thought
A Bit of Business
Please go to https://iclassical-academy.com/online-course-collections-music-career/ and look at, and consider, purchasing my 9 video series on Business and Music. While you are there take a look at the many fabulous instructors that are available to you. There is a lot to be learned on this site especially if you plan a career in music.
Also, please go to www.mikevaccaro2.bandcamp.com where I will now be selling my 9 CDs in various styles. You can audition all of the music in its complete form (not 20-second snippets) and purchase by download or by purchasing the CD directly from me if you prefer. If you like it, please buy it since you get to hear complete tracks.
Until next time:REMEMBER:
Always be happy with where you are at, while you are trying to get to where you want to be.