Now that my AMusTCL exam is over, I’ve collated all the useful links to essays and analysis I’ve found throughout the course of my preparations. Over time, I hope to provide links and book recommendations for the sections I didn’t do as well, along with a series of posts to give some better guidance on preparing for the exam.
Section A – Lutheran Chorale
Tom Pankhurst’s Chorale Guide – Straightforward, step-by-step method for completing chorale-based tasks. Work through all the worksheets and you’ll be on your way to full marks.
JSBChorales.net – Most of Bach’s chorales are online at this site. It’s really important to get a feel for how the original chorales look and sound and this site has plenty of mp3s and MIDI files to help non-pianists listen to the music.
Section A – Orchestration
I’ve yet to find much about this one, but a good knowledge of instruments is key.
Section A – Popular Song
Music Arrangers Page – A blog all about arranging for popular music. Not all of it is relevant, but it’s worth looking through the articles and applying the ideas to your own practice.
Section B – Schubert Symphony No 5 in Bb
Topic list blog post
This was definitely the trickiest section to prepare for. However, plenty of work on identifying chords and musical features is important in gaining the more straightforward marks on part b.
Scott Foglesong – Scott Foglesong works for the San Fransisco Conservatory of Music, and he’s put up a fantastic essay analysing Schubert’s Symphony no 5 in Bb. Saved me a lot of time doing the formal analysis, so I can concentrate on the thematic issues.
Section C – Musicals
Topic list blog post
The best way to approach this section is to watch as many of the musicals as possible. Lots of these are available on Netflix and LoveFIlm, and you can also find various versions on YouTube.
“Inside” series from New Line Theatre – there doesn’t seem to be an index page, but the link will take you to the search which brings up most of the pages. There are articles on Chicago, and Jesus Christ Superstar
Sweeney Todd: an analysis of the dramatic and musical structure – Someone has very kindly put up their entire PhD thesis on this particular show, with detailed analysis on several of the key songs.
Michael Bennett’s A Chorus LIne 101 – Three pages analysing the songs and structure of the show.
A Chorus Line: Does it Abide By Equity? – Ok, not strictly speaking useful for the exam, but a really interesting read! (link is to a PDF)
Have you taken an AMusTCL? What resources did you find useful? Post them below.