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CHOPS 3: The Sinta Quartet Method

CHOPS 3: The Sinta Quartet Method

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Printed Edition
Composer:Graser, Dan & Stern, Zachary
Publisher Ref:Conway
Chops 3 is the first book of its kind to give saxophone quartets – from a beginning level to advanced collegiate study – a complete guide to rehearsal techniques, warm-ups, and fundamentals, enabling the highest level of chamber music study.

Price: £39.95
Publisher:Conway Publications
Year of Issue:2021
Chops 3: The Sinta Quartet Method continues the mission of its 2 predecessors to modernize and update the fundamental areas of saxophone performance and study. This volume focuses entirely on the chamber music fundamentals needed to have a successful saxophone quartet experience and to develop effective rehearsal strategies. Of course, the bulk of your time in rehearsal will be spent on repertoire; however, the addition of warm-ups and fundamentals to the start – and perhaps end – of each rehearsal will allow for greater efficiency in achieving a unified approach to your music.
Saxophone quartet can be the most rewarding music-making you have during your studies as it focuses your attention on blend, intonation, group cohesiveness, and the shared formulation of an interpretation with friends and colleagues. However, it also likely requires that you practice on an instrument with which you’re not as familiar as your primary saxophone. Thus, some suggestions for getting acquainted with your new instrument’s tendencies are given at the outset. Doing some diligent individual work on making your quartet instrument as precisely practiced as your primary instrument will make for much more enjoyable rehearsals.
The main areas of focus for the ensemble exercises are intonation, cueing, uniformity, and blend. Knowing how to properly adjust each note of a chord is an important skill to develop aurally, as is the skill of reading a score and quickly deciphering which member of the chord you’re playing. As such, all exercises are written in full transposed score. Even if you are not yet familiar with transpositions, start with some of the “concert pitch” to saxophone pitch relationships you do know, and build from there while learning to read from a score. Since saxophone music requires that at some point, every member or occasionally the entire group cue together, cueing exercises focusing on developing this skill are included both individually and also in tandem with the aforementioned intonation exercises. Uniformity and Blend are the final areas and though frequently used interchangeably, they are specified here. Uniformity exercises focus on performing moving lines, articulating, using vibrato, beginning and releasing notes, and changing dynamics as a group. Blend exercises focus on timbre specifically and matching tone color across registers and instruments. As you can imagine, the two are linked but at various stages groups often find they need to focus. These exercises allow for that specific type of focus.
• Resources for developing awareness of your specific quartet instrument
• Full Score notation for all exercises
• A getting started chapter for young and new groups to make the most of their first rehearsals.
• Advanced and fun exercises for intonation, cueing, uniformity, and blend.
• Musical examples as a culminating study for all of the aforementioned areas.
By working with this volume, both students and quartet coaches will be able to employ an arsenal of exercises designed to address the most basic and the most advanced issues of saxophone chamber music. Upon completion the ensemble will have gained the ability to read from a transposed score as well as greater aural awareness of their timbre, intonation, chord qualities, and fundamentals impacting blend and uniformity. Through careful application of these exercises rehearsals will become much more fun and engaging, and performances will become much more cohesive and, as a result, more powerful.

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