Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

Department

School of Music

First Advisor

Amanda L. Schlegel

Abstract

As the music education profession continues to adapt to the needs of an increasingly pluralistic society, scholars and practitioners have begun to concern themselves with issues of social justice (e.g., equity, diversity, inclusion, or access). For band directors, one way to address such topics is through the purposeful programming of music by underrepresented composers or music that otherwise conveys messages about societal issues. As such, undergraduate music education majors who participate in concert bands might encounter a variety of compositions. Further, given that those ensemble experiences may be a primary factor in preservice music teachers’ commitment to their degree programs—and subsequently to the music education profession—it seems likely that some of the repertoire they study and perform could have a profound impact on their development as musicians, teachers, and people. Those experiences and impacts constitute some of the ways in which preservice music teachers are socialized to the norms, values, and traditions of being a band director.

The purpose of this multiple case study was to determine the extent to which preservice music teachers develop beliefs about concert programming as a function of their experiences in collegiate bands. Specifically, I examined the ways in which students perceive and engage with equity, diversity, inclusion, and other societal discourses in wind band repertoire as well as how such works influence their beliefs and values regarding concert programming. Participants in this study were four preservice music teachers in at least their third year of study in their music education degree programs. All of them had experience in more than one concert band at the university. They had also engaged with numerous works by composers from underrepresented groups or works that otherwise conveyed messages about societal issues. Findings from this study indicated that participants’ engagement with such works strengthened their commitment to (a) equitable programming practices and (b) fostering socially just band experiences in their future careers. Furthermore, findings from this study may be an impetus for band directors at all levels to consider implementing socially just concert programming practices in their careers.

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