Concert Critique Assignment Questions
Choose one of the following videos of a full-length concert:
1. Sting, Live at Durham Castle
2. Andrea Bocelli, Live in Concert
3. Above and Beyond Accoustic
4. A Tribute to Burt Bacharach at the White House
5. Pioneer Day Concert with the King’s Singers
6. Dvořák’s “New World” Symphony
After watching the entire concert write a 3-5 page concert critique following the criteria below. Be sure to use accurate musical terms to describe the music as much as possible.
Your concert critique should be 3-5 pages long, double-spaced. It should contain five paragraphs that describe the following aspects of the recorded concert you viewed this semester:
I. Who are the performers? Give the title of the concert and write something about the performers. Is it an orchestra? A choir? An ensemble? Solo artists? Why did you choose to view this particular performance? Tell as much as you know about the musicians that performed – are they professionals? Students? Teachers? How long have they been performing? Etc.
II. Describe the music that was performed on the concert. Use the musical characteristics that we have been learning in class. What genre is the music (opera aria? Jazz song? Standard tune? Solo instrument piece? Symphony?)
What style period was the music written in? What was the tempo, dynamics, texture, etc. Sometimes the music in a concert will be only one genre. Sometimes there will be several genres performed. Attach the program to your critique, and then refer to the titles in the program. For example: “Autumn Leaves” was performed by a small instrumental ensemble (guitar, bass, percussion). It is a standard contemporary tune. The tempo was a moderately slow ballad. It had a very mellow sound…
III. Tell how well you think the performers interpreted the music that was on the concert. Were the singers in tune? Did the piano player play musically and rhythmically? Do you think the performers communicated the music as it was meant to be communicated by the composer?
IV. Tell which pieces or part of the concert was most moving or enjoyable for you. If you didn’t enjoy the concert very much, tell why you didn’t enjoy it. What could have been better? Be as specific as you can when expressing your opinion of the performance – don’t just write generalities like “It was nice” or “it made me feel like dancing”. Tell why the music made you feel like dancing. Write about why you particularly enjoyed that part of the concert.
V. Conclude your critique by summing up the performance and telling us if you would go to hear these performers again – or would invite your friends or family to hear this performance/performers.
A rubric is available for this assignment and can be found under the Progress drop down menu under Rubrics.