New Music Ensemble Direction Course

The 12-week E-Course in Music Ensemble Direction, from Brendan Breslin, is for teachers and directors of instrumental groups and/or choirs who wish to develop their conducting skills, communication through body and language, and oversight of ensembles through goals, repertoire and other enhancing elements. The course has a practical application for school and instrumental teachers whether involved in conducting or not, as well as community ensemble leaders.

The course will include live and written components, as well as analysis through live lessons (online access required) and uploaded practice videos. The participants will develop an understanding of score analysis, repertoire and integral elements of ensemble instruments and voices.

The course will focus on the key skills for direction of any ensemble including the technique required for clear communicative conducting, analyzing and interpreting repertoire, general knowledge of the instruments and/or voices within the ensemble, and general practical applications such as strategy, rehearsal/venue considerations, evaluation, dealing with anxiety, and arranging music.

On completion of the course, participants will have a greater understanding of the various elements involved in music rehearsal and performance and will have crafted core values in leadership, positive reinforcement and motivation. Participants can expect to have developed a skill set and understanding for what is most important before, during and after music performance.

Includes modules on Conducting, Musical Language & Form, Instrument / Voice Knowledge, Arranging, Rehearsal & Performance Strategy, Presentation.

The course materials will be accessed via the RIAM Teaching & Learning Network website. Registered participants will receive a code to access the course materials at the beginning of September 2017.

Course dates: 11th September 2017 – 3rd December 2017

Closing date for registering: 28th August 2017


  • An e-mail address and internet access,
  • ability to read music, experience with an ensemble or ensemble repertoire is preferable.
  • Participants will be expected to make themselves available on the 3rd of December 2017 to attend the Royal Irish Academy of Music to direct a performing ensemble. This element is compulsory. This will include a rehearsal of a set work and Viva Voce based on this.

Award for course: Participants who complete the course will receive a certificate of completion.

For more information, please contact: or

or click this link to register for the course: Music Ensemble Direction E-Course.