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TitleofPiece:AveMaria

ConductorsName:SabrinaGutwilik

EnsembleName:HighSchoolMixedChoir

Composer/Arranger:IgorStravinsky

GradeofPiece:912

LearningGoals:
WhatLearnerswill
Beabletodo(behavioral):Bytheendofthemonth,studentsintheMixedChoirwillbe
abletoperformStravinskys(second)settingofAveMariawhileincorporatingavariety
ofmusicalskillswithasuccessrateof80%.
Understand(cognitive):StudentswillinterpretAveMariaasmedievalplainchantby
comparingandcontrastingittoStravinskyssettingofthechant.
Encounter(experiential):StudentswillsingStravinskyssettingofAveMariainastyle
similartothatofthechantafterhavingidentifiedmusicalfactorsofthechant.
Constructmeaning(constructivist):Studentswillrealizethesimilarmusicalelementsof
boththeplainchant,AveMaria,andStravinskyssettingofAveMaria,andapplythose
thattheyheardinthechanttoStravinskyspiece,allwhiledemonstratingtruemusical
intentandahighlevelofmusicianship.
TechnicalSkills:

Breathcontrol
Phrasing
Textstress
Verytextdriven
Latindiction
Balanceofvoiceparts
Intonation(consonancesanddissonances)
Tone(belcantosinging)

MusicalConcepts:

Acknowledgingconsonancesanddissonancesappropriately(alto/tenor)
Leapsinthetenor

Challengingrhythms

EmpoweringMusicianship:

Connectingtexttomusic
Stylisticintegrity
Understandingchantasitrelatestothepiece
Process:

Partner:Haveeachsectionwithinthechoirbreakupintotheirownseparategroups
(sop,alto,ten,bass)anddiscusstheissuesofthepiecewithintheirindividualsections.
Theappointedsectionleadercanhelpfacilitatediscussionifheorshesochooses,but
mustbefairinlettingotherssharetheirideasaswell.Everyoneintheclassroomshould
berepresentedasequals.Assumingthateveryonealreadyknowstheirnotes,the
questionsposedwillbe:whatcanyoudotobecomebetterasasection?Whatareyour
strengths,yourweaknesses?Eachsectionwillstandinacircleandsingthepartona
neutralsyllable(dooordi,whicheverthesectionasawholefeelsmostcomfortablewith)
thattheyfirstfeelmostcomfortablewith,theonethattheytrulyfeeltheyhaveconquered
asasection(note:thiscanrangeanywherefromasinglephrasetoanentirepageof
music).Then,theywillsingthepartthattheyfeelleastcomfortablewith.Thiswillhelp
themtopracticeandrealizevulnerabilityasmusiciansandperformers,andwill,
hopefully,leadthemtorealizetheirartisticpotential,becausethereisalwaysroomfor
artisticgrowth.Finally,theywilltelltheclasswhattheythoughttheydidwellinthe
goodsection,andwhattheyspecificallyfelttheyneededtoworkonintheneeds
improvementsection.Theteachercangiveconstructivefeedbackifheorshefeelsit
necessarytostudentsartisticgrowth.Thepointofthisprocessistoencouragethatitis
okaytomakemistakes,aslongastheywillbecorrected,andtoshowthateveryonehas
similarstrugglesasamusician;moreimportantly,withinthepieceitself,manywillshare
similardifficultsectionsorsectionstheyfeeltheyaregoodat.
Present:
1. TheteacherwillplayaplainchantsettingofAveMariafromthemedievalera.
Theywilldiscussthethingstheywantstudentstolistenfor(harmony,texture,
phrasing,etc).
2. Theteacherwill,directlyafter,playarecordingofGabrieliConsort&Players
singingStravinskyssettingofAveMaria.Again,studentsshouldlistenforallthe
samemusicalelements.

3. Studentswillcompareandcontrasteach.Theyshouldconsiderthefollowing
questions:whatmakestheplainchantsosimple?WhatmakesStravinskyspiece
morecomplex?HowisthechantevidentinStravinskyspiece?Howdohis
compositionalchoicesandelementsofthechantintertwinewithinthepiece?
4. Theteacherwillprovideatranslationofthetextandhavestudentswriteitinto
theirscores.
5. Theteacherwillrunthroughabrief(3min.)warmupthatsomehowpertainsto
thepiece(regardingrhythm,phrasingandtessitura).Anyissuesregardingtone
andbreathsupportwillalsobeaddressedthroughoutrehearsalsbyincorporating
warmupsandsequencestobettertheseskills.
6. Theteacherwillhavethestudentsrehearsethepartsofthemusictheyfeelthey
havetroublewith,startingwiththemostdifficultfirst,endingatthesimplest.
Thisway,thestudentswillapproachthesimplerpartswithmuchmoreeaseand
lessapprehension.Thiswillgobacktothepartnersection,aspartsrehearsed
shouldbethoseidentifiedearlierbyeachsectionofthechoir.
7. Foranysectionthatisrhythmicallychallenging,studentswillspeaktheirparts
usingKodlysrhythmsyllables.Forsectionsthatprovideissueswithintonation,
studentswillsingpartsondooandtheteacherwillhavethemstoponcertain
chordsthatmaynotbetuningcorrectly.Theteacherwillencourageconstant
listeningandattentiontoallothervoicepartsintheensemble.
8. TheteacherwilldemonstratehowtheLatintextshouldbepronounced.Theywill
explainthecorrectionformationofvowelsforeachword.Studentswillnow
speakthetextinrhythmfortheentirepiece(thiscanbedoneovertime).Forone
rehearsal,theteachercanfocusononesectionofthetexttostart.
9. Studentswillindicatewheretheybelieveeachwordisstressedbycirclingthe
stressedsyllableofeachword,orleavingitaloneifitisunstressed.Theteacher
willaskthemwhichwords/syllablestheybelievearestressed.Theywillrehearse
thetextinrhythm,nowspeakingwiththetextstresses.Theywillalsoindicate
dynamicsandphrasing(macro,micro)byevaluatingwherethephrasegoesand
thelevelofdynamicsappropriateforeach.Theteacherwillaskthemthesethings,
again.Thestudentswillnowspeakthetextinrhythmwhileincorporating
phrasing,textstressanddynamics.
10. Thestudentswillcontinuetoworktowardssingingontextwithgood
pronunciation,intonation,phrasing,dynamics,andmanyaspectsofmusicality.
Personalize:Again,haveeachsectionbreakupintotheirseparategroups.Thistime,
theywillcompletethesametaskastheyhadinthepartnersection,buttheywill
incorporatethetextofAveMaria.Theywillsingthetwosectionstheypreviously
performed,nowonthetext,notaneutralsyllable.Theywillacknowledgethemusical

elementspreviouslydiscussedintheplainchantofAveMaria,andexplainhowthey
incorporatedthemintotheirsinging.Theywillalsoshowsensitivitytothetextstress,
phrasing,breathsupport,tone,andintonationasitappliestothepiece.Aftertheysingthe
twosectionsontextfortheclass,theclasswilltellthemiftheysuccessfullyincorporated
theelementsoftheplainchantintotheirsinging,oriftheyneedtoworkonit/addcertain
things.Then,intheirsections,studentswillbreakupintosmallergroups(duosortrios)
andcomposertheirownplainchantofAveMaria.Thisshouldconsistofasinglemelodic
linewithvariedcontours(note:theyalreadyknow/understandthedefinitionof
contour).Eachpersoninthesmallgroupwillcompose46measuresofplainchant,and
theneachwillputtheirstogethertoformonecohesiveplainchantsong.Ineachsection,
therewillbe56differentsettingsofplainchant.
Perform:Attheendofthemarkingperiod,studentswillperformafulllengthconcertof
differentrepertoire,includingStravinskysAveMaria.Theywillalsoperformtheirnew
settingsofplainchantinfrontoftheclassasanenrichmentactivity(butthisshouldalso
befun!).
Assessment:
Formative:Throughoutthemonth,theteacherwillexaminestudentprogressbynoting
mistakesorproblemspotsinrehearsals,howthegroupworkstogether,levelsofenergy,
andoverallinterestlevelofthestudents.Sectionalscanbearrangedwheresectionleaders
leadwithfeedbackfromtheteacher.Therewillbefrequentdiscussionsofoverall
musicalprogresswithintheclassroom,makingsurethatthegoalsofthepieceand
performancearebeingmet.
Summative:Thestudentswilldemonstratetheirdeeperunderstandingofperformance
aspectsofStravinskysAveMariabyimplementingmusicalintegrity,highlevelsof
musicianshipandincorporatingelementsofchantintheirfinalconcertperformanceof
thepiece.
Integrative:Iwillcollecteachsmallgroupsnewplainchantcompositionandreview
theirunderstandingoftheconceptsofchantandhowtheyapplytoStravinskysAve
Maria.Iwillalsohavethemwritedownthreewordsthatdescribehowtheirchantshould
besung,oranythingaboutchantingeneral.Thiswilltelltheteacherifheorshewasable
togetstudentstounderstandchantandhowitsapplicabletoStravinskyspiece.This
willprovidefurtherunderstandingofwhetherornotstudentsaremasteringthemusical
andperformanceconcepts.