For All Teachers

Emotional Symphony

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  1. Have 7-9 players take the stage and take up a formation similar to an orchestra.
  2. Instead of instrument sections such as horns, strings, woodwinds and percussion, have each section be an emotional sound; joy, fear, anger and sadness.
  3. If this is the first time doing this exercise, do a warm up where each section explores the various levels of intensity and volume in each emotion. For example, tittering and giggling moving all the way up to bellowing belly laughs.
  4. One player enter as the conductor and introduces the name of the piece about to be performed. For example, “Summertime” or “ Birthday Party”.
  5. Using hand motions the conductor points to the sections and raises or lowers hands to indicate the intensity and volume of the emotion.
  6. The piece can have blended sounds, crescendos and decrescendos. The conductor can also turn off sections completely by putting their palm up (as if to signal ‘stop’).
  7. Finish by having the conductor silence the orchestra by closing his or her hands.

TIP: Because this can get quite loud, avoid vocal strain by reminding the participants to explore all levels of the emotion, especially the subtler ones.

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