More ‘no reading allowed’ reply on SD blog…

@Allison said,”Nowhere could I find “reader” defined as someone performing music, and there’s a very good reason why. It’s simply not an accepted use of the word. In fact, to use that word to describe orchestral musicians really makes it sound like you are disparaging them–is that something you are doing consciously? It does seem to be a recurring theme with you.

Honestly, if you think that the word “reader” aptly describes what an orchestral player does, then I don’t think you fully understand orchestral playing, no matter how many reviews you’ve read.”

Hopefully we are in agreement that I did not invent the term, and that others use it, whether you agree with that usage or not?

Tell me then, if you are not improvising, what is it you are doing?

Here is a definition of the musical use of the term ‘reading’…


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the action or practice of a person who reads.

Speech. the oral interpretation of written language.

the interpretation given in the performance of a dramatic part,musical composition, etc.: an interesting reading of Beethoven’s 5thSymphony.

the extent to which a person has read; literary knowledge: aman of wide reading.

matter read or for reading: a novel that makes good reading.
With all due respect, I completely support your finding and using vocabulary that works for you.  Nevertheless, nothing you have said is persuasive to my changing my position, for this is a term and understanding that works for me.  It is also something I do.
Who doesn’t love to curl up by the fire in complete silence and read a good score?  Who doesn’t want to immerse themselves in it and absorb its every detail until it plays in one’s head?  That is what I do.  That works for me.
You also seem to be jumping to a conclusion that I am speaking in a negative manner about orchestral players.  Who else could perform on demand day and night under all circumstances in a manner with which the composer would not only be comfortable, but perhaps even pleased?



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