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Old 05-18-2012, 08:57 AM
Hotspur Hotspur is offline
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Originally Posted by Bob1131 View Post
Therefore, a good musician must consider the end product and any self expression must be limited to the boundaries of the whole.
But this is true of almost any piece. Even the most intensely improvised music is almost always limited in some ways by the boundaries of the piece. Whether you're talking about a key center or a series of modal choices or something else - an improvisation where an individual musician is free to ignore the constraints of what everyone else is doing is very rare indeed.

In an orchestral situation, you are more limited than you are in say, a blues jam (eg, you don't have a choice of notes) but the ways in which you are limited are a continuum.

Therefore, even though classical musicians can certainly self express within a performance, I would be hard pressed to say that the ability to self express defines a musician. Does that make sense?
I understand what you're getting at, but I disagree. I doubt there was ever a successful classical musician who didn't have that ability. (In fact, it's often how they get the job!) So rather I think an orchestra is a situation where musicians subsume a whole bunch of their individual expressive capabilities (but not all of them) in service of something bigger.

But that doesn't mean they lack the ability, even in a highly-restricted context.
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