Approved by Faculty Senate
New Course Proposal: Piano Ensemble, MUS 233
A. Course Description
1. Catalog Description
This course is designed to give students an opportunity to acquire ensemble
experience in piano. Students will be a part of a variety of ensemble combinations, with
the Instructor acting as coach and coordinator. Repertory is selected to acquaint the
student with representative literature from all periods. Membership is open to all
qualified students of the university. Prerequisite: audition and permission of instructor.
This course may be repeated for credit. This course may be applied toward the Fine and
Performing Arts University Studies Program Requirements.
2. Statement of the major focus and objectives of the course
This course fulfills the requirements for the Fine and Performing Arts category of
the University Studies Program by including learning activities that promote students'
a. explore the language, skills, and materials of an artistic discipline;
b. use the methods of an arts practitioner to actively engage in creative processes or
c. understand the cultural and gender contexts of artistic expression; and
d. engage in reflective analysis of their own art work or interpretive performance.
3. Course outline of the major topics and subtopics: (letters in
parentheses refer to the University Studies Program Fine and Performing Arts Outcomes
1. Improving listening skills (a, b, d).
2. Developing positive ways to interact with others in creating a final musical product
(a, c, d).
3. Improving rhythm skills (a, b, d).
4. Improving technical piano skills. (a, b).
5. Learning and practicing effective rehearsal techniques (a, b, d).
6. Improving sight reading ability (a, b).
7. Understanding the cultural, gender, and historical contexts of works performed (c).
8. Engaging in reflective analysis of the ensemble's performance (d).
9. Expanding knowledge of keyboard literature. (a, c)
10. Learning to read different styles of musical scores. (a, b)
4. Basic instructional plan and methods utilized.
Students will meet with instructor/coach in small ensembles approximately three
times per semester. Students will participate in one piano ensemble repertoire class per
month. Repertoire classes will include ensembles performing with group reflective analysis
and critique and discussions of the musics history, cultural, and gender contexts.
5. Course requirements (papers, lab work, projects, etc.) and means of
1. Students must attend classes/rehearsals as scheduled. Attendance is of importance
both in terms of individual progress and of responsibility toward ones ensemble
partner. Students will receive a monthly schedule for individual ensemble work with the
Instructor. Once a month the class will meet as a group, which each time will feature one
aspect of the ensemble experience. (USP Outcomes a, b, c, and d)
2. Outside practice by individual students of assigned ensemble pieces. (USP Outcomes
a, b, and d)
3. Ensemble groups are expected to rehearse outside of class/coaching sessions. (USP
Outcomes a, b, and d)
4. All students must perform in the Piano Ensemble Recital as scheduled each semester.
(USP Outcomes a, b, and d)
Evaluation will be based upon:
Attendance and Participation.
Adequate preparation of ensemble repertoire.
Participation in discussions during repertoire classes indicative of reflective
analysis of performance and understanding of the cultural, historic, and gender contexts
of the works performed and/or discussed.
6. Textbook(s) or alternatives:
Music will be provided by instructor. Repertoire will be selected from a variety of
styles and periods.
7. List of references and bibliography:
Georgii, Walter. Klaviermusik. Zurich-Freiburg: Atlantis Verlag, 1950.
Gordon, Stewart. A History of Keyboard Literature: Music for the Piano and its Forerunners.
New York: Schirmer Books. London: Prentice Hall International, 1996.
Hinson, Maurice. Music for More Than One Piano: An Annotated Guide. Bloomington:
Indiana University Press, 1983.
McGraw, Cameron. Piano Duet Repertoire: Music Originally Written for One Piano, Four
Hands. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1981.
Weekley, Dallas and Nancy Arganbright. The Piano Duet: A Learning Guide. San
Diego: Neil A. Kjos Music Company, 1996.
Clavier. The Instrumentalist Publishing Company.
Keys: Piano Music Magazine. The Instrumentalist Publishing Company.
This course contributes to the departments curriculum by providing a small
ensemble performing option for pianists which is not currently available. The licensure
for vocal music has a requirement for small ensemble experience. We have ensembles
available for voice, orchestral, and band instruments, but very little available for
pianists. Vocal music education majors whose main performing medium is piano have very few
options for fulfilling this particular licensure requirement.
This also benefits the Winona Experience Studies Program at Winona State by providing a
course the fulfills the outcomes for the Fine and Performing Arts category of the Arts and
Sciences Core. There is room for approximately twenty students in this course. While two
or three of these students may be vocal music education majors, most of them will not be
music majors and will be able to use the credits for their University Studies program. The
music department must often turn down students outside of the music department with piano
background who would like to continue taking lessons because the applied studios have only
enough room to service music majors and minors. This course would provide an opportunity
for some of these students to continue playing piano with the guidance of an instructor.
This course does not increase or decrease the total credits required by a major or
minor in any other department. No notification is required.
D. "G" Courses
E. General Education (University Studies) Course Proposals
Please see attached University Studies Course Proposal materials.
University Studies Course Approval
Department or Program: Music
Course Number: 233
Number of Credits 1 S.H.
Course Title: Piano Ensemble
This course is designed to give students an opportunity to acquire ensemble experience
in piano and to learn the enjoyment of participation in chamber music. Students will be a
part of a variety of ensemble combinations, with the Instructor acting as coach and
coordinator. Repertory is selected to acquaint the student with representative literature
from all periods. Membership is open to all qualified students of the university.
Prerequisite: audition and permission of instructor. This course may be repeated for
This is an existing course that has previously been approved by A2C2: No (A new
course proposal is being submitted in conjunction with this University Studies proposal.)
Department Contact Person for this Course: Cathy Schmidt
USP Outcome a: explore the language, skills, and materials of an artistic discipline.
In this course the students explore the language, skills, and materials of music
through developing listening skills, rhythmic skills, piano technique, and music sight
reading skills. Students become acquainted with keyboard literature representing a variety
of styles and improve their ability to read different styles of musical scores as well as
perform in ensemble with others.
USP Outcome b: use the methods of an arts practitioner to actively engage in creative
processes or interpretive performances.
In Piano Ensemble, students are actively engaged in interpretive performances of varied
repertoire in several different ensemble combinations (duets, trios, etc.) in the context
of both rehearsal and performance. Students explore the processes through which a
performer interprets or expresses a composer's work.
USP Outcome c: understand the cultural and gender contexts of artistic
Students in this ensemble course explore the cultural and gender aspects of musical
expression through both performing and hearing others perform works by women composers and
by male composers of diverse cultural and regional backgrounds. Background information
regarding these composers and the cultural contexts of the music are discussed in piano
ensemble repertoire classes.
USP Outcome d: engage in reflective analysis of their own artwork or interpretive
performance and respond to the works of others.
Reflective analysis of their own and their partners performances is inherent in
the nature of both the coaching sessions and ensemble practice sessions. Students need to
match styles of playing and expression and that requires intense reflective analysis of
their own and each others playing. Monthly piano ensemble repertoire classes provide
the opportunity for group reflective analysis of the ensembles that are performing for the