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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Teacher Tuesday: removable score notes

Welcome back to Teacher Tuesday! Today I have a quick tip using one of my favorite tools again: washi tape! I have recently started using it to make notes in my original scores for my choir classes.

I used to make a photocopy of the original score for every song I did with my choirs so that I could write my own notes about things I want to remember to teach, conducting cues I don't want to forget, or changes I make to the original arrangement (usually to simplify for my younger groups). I would use the photocopy with all my notes for rehearsals and then use the original score for performance.

Problem: I sometimes want my notes in the performance too! I will confess, I still get nervous in performances, even after more than 2 decades of performing and almost a decade of teaching and conducting. I need my notes to remember what cues to give, which vocal part to focus on, etc in the performance. I have to use the original score to follow copyright correctly, but I don't want to mark up the originals.

Enter washi tape!

Any time I want to make a note in the score, I just get a piece of washi tape, stick it in, and write over it. When I'm done, or I change my mind, I can take it out without damaging the score. Score! (Sorry, couldn't stop myself from using that pun...) Now I just use my original scores for rehearsals as well. The thicker paper is much easier to use, and I can easily color-code my notes with different color tape (cues in blue, rehearsal notes in yellow etc, or sopranos green, altos red etc), and they are actually easier to read on the tape than they are when I write them straight onto the paper. So many advantages to this system!

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