This is a review on our own level 5 HND show and how we can improve for next time. The gig was performed twice in the college theatre both on the same day. The show consists of jazz standards and improvisation, mainly from sheet music. Im going to be talking about the good and bad points of the gigs that were played and how to improve for next time.
Variety of songs and genres
Choice of style the songs were played in
The first good point was audience feedback. This is a good point because everyone who played the show all got positive feedback from the audience and off different people. People from the audience has people come up to them after the show and said how they haven’t heard anything like it before and how much they all enjoyed it. We also got feedback on how is wasn’t just all one style so it kept the audience entertained and they felt like the show didn’t drag on. I think getting audience feedback is really important. This is because they were the people who we were presenting our music to and they were there, to support their family members and friends who were in the show. I personally think the show was a success purely because of the feedback we got given and how the audience enjoyed watching us.
The next good point was the variety of songs, genres and styles. It is important to have a variety, unless there’s a specific concept to the show. Variety made the show more interesting to watch and kept people occupied. Its good because sometimes a whole show that lacks variety, can seem to drag on a bit for the people watching. But with variety, the audience see something new each song. If our show didn’t have variety, we wouldn’t have got as much positive feedback from the audience. The show would have dragged on a lot for everyone. Our show included loads of different genres. The genres included anime metal style soundtrack songs, solo bass, solo guitar, jazz fusion, jazz with a band, jazz with a two piece, blues, classical, crazy experimental mash ups and even a song that is based around a speech. This made all the songs sound different from eachother, therefore more enjoyable to watch. I think the song choice was really good for the show. For example, the last song at the show we created involved thomas the tank engine. The audience weren’t expecting that at all. The song was mixed with crazy noises and was completely different to all the other songs within the show.
Improvisational feel could have been better
The amp layout wasn’t right, the bass amp should have been near the snare drum
Sound from the monitors wasn’t good
Intros and ending needed to be tighter (giant steps ending was good)
Mr pc intro needed to start with a groove
The first bad point was minor mistakes. This is a minor bad point because the songs in the show needed to sound well rehearsed and professional for the audience to watch and enjoy. Although the mistakes weren’t major, they were still noticeable with the players and the audience. The main reason for these mistakes were because of lack of rehearsals for the show. I think the problem with lack of rehearsals was because of the lack of rehearsal space and time free to rehearse when the space is free.
The next bad point was that the improvisational feel could have been better. This relates to the minor mistakes because of not enough rehearsal. More rehearsals would have made the song and the improvisation fit better together. Also the improvisation in the pieces would have been more structured to fit with the songs with more flow. Good improvisation in songs are great because it makes the song more structured and also breaks down the song with either musical/technical playing.
Another bad point was the amp layout on the night. This is because the bass amp was closer to the low pitched floor toms and bass drum. Placing the bass amp on the snare and high-hat side would have been better for the sound. When the bass amp was on the floor tom side of the kit, then all the low frequencies would be on that one side and will create a bad sound of too much bass frequencies. But if the bass amp was on the snare drum and high-hat side the frequencies would have been more evenly placed, so you would be able to hear all the amps, vocals and drums more clear during the show. Next time the whole group needs to make sure to take with the people setting up the stage about where we want the amps to be placed for a better sound.
The next bad point was the sound from the monitors. This is because the sound through the monitors on the live show completely changed from when we played in the soundcheck. At the live show, i couldn’t hear myself clearly and neither did most of the performers. To improve for next time i think we should have a longer sound check so the performances can be performed with the band being able to hear themselves and each other clearly, so the performance will be better overall. Also another problem was the lighting. The lighting wasn’t planned much and seemed to be randomly changed during performances. I felt that during Mr pc was alright and very standard. Everybody could be seen by the audience clearly and the performers were able to see what they were doing too. But during Giant steps the lighting was very dark and had random blasts of lights irrelevant to the feel of the song in my opinion. During that performance i couldn’t see my fret board too well and had to concentrate on where i was placing my fingers. Also another bad thing about the dark lighting that was a problem on a few of the tracks, other than they couldn’t what they were playing was, The photos produced from those tracks weren’t very good because of it being too dark to actually get a decent picture.
Intros and endings needed to be tighter. This goes back to lack of rehearsals, this is because the songs weren’t rehearsed enough for the groups to properly get the intros and endings nailed down tight. For next i think that more rehearsal time and space will make most of the bad points of this show better for the next show we down. For example, for Mr pc, the into could have been better, if we as a group worked on a good intro and ending for the song. I think the song should have started with a groove to get the correct feel for the song. The ending of songs is one of the most important parts of a song, because it is the last part of the song the audience will hear at the time. So if your ending is bad it will effect how the audience actually feel about the song as a whole. To improve this we need more rehearsal space and time, but to also discuss and look at different intro and ending techniques used in other songs that will fit the song we are performing.
Overall, i thought the show was really good and the audience enjoyed the songs and the song variety. But lack of rehearsals is the main thing to make all the improvements for the next show better. i think there were more good points than major bad point about the show, but theres things such as the lighting and the sound quality that also need improving on.