Date of Paper/Work


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Leadership (Ed.D.)

Type of Paper/Work



David Rigoni, Douglas Orzolek, Eleni Roulis


Many studies have attempted to determine the characteristics of effective music ensemble teachers through quantitative studies. Using music ensemble teachers themselves as participants, these studies have produced numerical lists lacking context. Furthermore, many studies have ignored the other stakeholders in the rehearsal room; the musicians. The purpose of this study was to determine the characteristics of music ensemble teachers from the perspective of amateur adult musicians in community ensembles through questionnaires and interviews. While participants largely corroborated the findings of previous research, fellowship emerged as a new finding, both in relation to the music ensemble teacher and with other musicians. Interview participants described fellowship as a responsibility of the music ensemble teacher to facilitate and manage. Fellowship between ensemble musicians was described as community building and finding meaning in being part of something bigger than one’s self. Data from interviews was coded and analyzed through two theoretical lenses; constructivism and Lincoln’s theory of myth and ritual. One finding suggested that musicians construct their understanding of what music ensemble teachers should be based on the previous teachers they encounter. The dissonance/consonance with this construct may influence the musician’s participation in ensembles. Music ensemble teachers should understand that setting and establishing routine (ritual) is positive and comforting, but occasionally breaking routine can be equally effective and rewarding. Finally, music ensemble teachers should understand that a ritual involving fellowship is not only worthy of consideration, but also necessary. Facilitating opportunities for fellowship may contribute toward the success and longevity of the ensemble both in terms of musical performance, and member retention.


music, ensemble, teacher, effective, conductor, musician

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This file may be slow to open due to its size. For best results, right-click and select "save as..."

Included in

Education Commons