What makes a good band master?


Can anyone help me please. I have just been asked to take on the roll of bandmaster and was wondering if anyone could give a few tips on doing this successfully. I dont want to come across as a little Hitler but dont want to be a soft touch either. How do you control the troops? What makes a good bandmaster?


Active Member
A good band master is someone who people feel comfortable with talking to so they will inform about their absences etc. Make it clear what the band expects from people in terms of committment and, what to do if you can't make it to rehearsal, what uniform requirements etc.

You need to communicate well with the rest of the band and be consistent. i.e XXX will get annoyed if you moan at them for wearing red socks but don't moan at mr principal. Also if you give apologies at rehearsals do it EVERY REHEARSAL or else people will stop bothering to inform you. Make sure the band knows what your job is and what they can expect from you.

To stop rambling on...just be consistent with what you do so people know what is expected from them!


Supporting Member
There a course i Know of in Telford (dont panic it can be a distance learning couse). Its a city and guilds course for teaching adult education that has been adapted for conductors.
i did it some time ago and found it a great help with handling people and different situations.
Ive just emailed my brother-in law( its a course he developed) for some more info.
as soon as i hear from him ill post something in here.
it should be interesting for others aswell.
:hammer (i like this 1!!!!)


Active Member
A good bandmaster needs to be someone, who doesnt complain at players all the time, but when complaints are needed to be made they are said in a "jest" way.
They also need drive- to urge their band on into climbing higher up the section tables, and need to be selecting music that the entire band enjoy playing.

Hope this helps


I think a good Bandmaster is someone who realises banding is a hobby for most people and it's there to enjoy!!


A good bandmaster has to be just as much a part of the band as the players are. He needs to have the respect of the players as a musician and also as a person. If the band is any good there will be sufficient self discipline that the bandmaster doesn't need to be a "little hitler". But most of all, the bandmaster needs to be himself when conducting. I have spent many years training adults in other things, I have a little experience of conducting, and I played in my first area contest in 1971. I believe that teaching and conducting are intimately intertwined. The bandmasters job is to help the players achieve their musical goals, it is primarily a job of teaching. It is also about identifying peoples limits and helping them to push those limits as far as they are willing and able to push them.


A Good Bandmaster

As well as being consistent, also check yourself for annoying phrases and repeated words. You'd be amazed at what gets on peoples nerves, yeah, and you might not even realise you are doing it, yeah, and then, when you band have switched off and don't listen any more, yeah, you are going to wonder why, yeah?

It is really hard to concentrate on what the musical point the conductor is making if the way they are saying it is annoying you. I'm sure we have all been there, yeah???? :hammer


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