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Conductors face a multitude of hurdles as they strive to obtain a foothold in the professional world. Once they have attained a position, there are obstacles both on and off the podium to keeping that position as well as advancing in the profession. Founding conductor of the Cleveland Pops Orchestra, pedagogue, and frequent guest conductor for both pops and classical concerts, Carl Topilow is in a unique position to help conductors navigate their careers.
The Orchestral Conductor’s Career Handbook takes readers through the step-by-step process of establishing a career in orchestral conducting. Through his experiences with professional, pops, conservatory, community, youth, summer festival, opera and ballet orchestras, Topilow provides practical tips for conductors of any orchestra type and at any level of their development. Filled with personal stories from Topilow’s career, the handbook provides insights on an array of topics, including applying for conducting programs and conducting positions, connecting with audiences, developing interpersonal relations within the orchestra family, starting your own orchestra, interacting with donors, and beyond. It also presents fresh ideas for programming, rehearsing, and approaches to standard repertoire pieces.
Carl Topilow has enjoyed an eclectic career holding music director positions with several orchestras including the National Repertory Orchestra (NRO), Firelands Symphony Orchestra (FSO), and founding conductor of the Cleveland Pops Orchestra (CPO). He also served as conductor and director of the orchestral program and instructor for the master’s program in orchestral conducting at the Cleveland Institute of Music (CIM). He was named faculty emeritus upon his retirement from that position.
Chapter 1: Getting Started
Chapter 2: Finding a School with the Right Program for You
Chapter 3: The Next Steps
Chapter 4: How to Win a Job---and Keep It!
Chapter 5: Thoughts on Programming
Chapter 6: The Rehearsal
Chapter 7: Pops Concerts
Chapter 8: Guest Conducting
Chapter 9: Music Director Roles with Different Types of Orchestras
Chapter 10: The Audition – For the Auditioner and the Auditionee
Chapter 11: Regarding Interpretation
Chapter 12: On the Podium Clarity
Chapter 13: Practical Repertoire Suggestions for Select Standard Repertoire Pieces
Chapter 14: Coda
Appendix 1: Carl’s Definition of Conducting and Needed Qualities
Appendix 2: Carl’s Cliches and Tenets
Appendix 3: Pops Programs and Themes
Appendix 4: Programming
Appendix 5: Cue Sheet Samples
Appendix 6: Transcriptions, Arrangements, and Orchestrations
Appendix 7: Syllabus and Repertoire for Beginning Conducting Class
Here is an important addition to the already large catalog of books devoted to conducting. Carl Topilow examines everything you always needed to know about the profession, especially when it comes to finding your career path. With examples from his own life as well as general observations, this is a must-read for conductors in waiting.
This book represents Topilow's more than 40 years as a conductor, educator, and music director. It is a compendium of extraordinary worth and bountiful information, packed with practical, focused information and written with clarity and knowledge, for both aspiring conductors and those of us looking for more hints on how to handle certain challenges in the standard classical and pop repertoire. Enjoy!
A conducting primer of unprecedented breadth, this book draws from maestro Carl Topilow’s own extraordinary life in music with honesty and humor, charting a course for a profession in conducting for the young musician. The book expresses both the practical and the profound in a well-organized text glowing with Topilow's positive energy and great humanity.
Carl Topilow takes us behind the scenes with sage advice for conductors of all ages in this comprehensive guide. Highlighted by engaging stories drawn from his decades of experience conducting concerts all over the world, this book is a must read for all aspiring conductors!
Carl Topilow’s book has everything for an aspiring conductor. His experience is remarkable and his ability to express so many aspects of the conducting world is clear and complete. This book is a must-read for anyone thinking of pursuing a career in conducting or those who are curious of what a conductor does.
Carl Topilow’s candid, earnest, and thorough description of the business of conducting answers most of the practical and conceptual questions that a conducting student or a young conductor might have. This book promises to be a formidable teaching tool for conducting programs.
This book is filled with great advice for aspiring conductors in different stages of their careers. Carl Topilow shares his infinite knowledge acquired through his stellar experiences as professional conductor and pedagogue.
Carl Topilow offers a thoughtful insight into the unique journey of a conductor, drawing on decades of personal experiences and relevant anecdotes. This handbook provides a comprehensive guide full of practical information that covers all the basics in detail and more—a useful tool for anyone interested in pursuing a career in conducting!
CIM - Elgar Violin Concerto
Firelands – Academic Festival Overture