Date of Award

Spring 5-2014

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)



Committee Chair

Jay Dean

Committee Chair Department


Committee Member 2

Joseph Brumbeloe

Committee Member 2 Department


Committee Member 3

Gregory Fuller

Committee Member 3 Department


Committee Member 4

Edward Hafer

Committee Member 4 Department


Committee Member 5

Steven Moser

Committee Member 5 Department



This work is a reference guide for the solving of major conducting gestural issues in Beethoven’s first eight symphonies. The most common major gestural issues encountered in conducting Beethoven’s symphonies include tempo modulations, fermati, hypermetric conducting, and cueing in rapid succession. The methods and criteria used for solving each of these issues are addressed in separate chapters devoted to each of these major gestural issues. A following chapter is devoted to the solving of less complicated issues including starting movements, gradual tempo changes, nonmodulatory sudden tempo changes, and showing dynamics and sforzandi.

Each symphony is given its own chapter where each movement is analyzed for its specific gestural issues. In each movement’s analysis, every type of major gestural issue is given its own section where the locations of each issue are presented. As necessary, each instance of the issue being addressed receives its own specific suggested solution and, when needed, a description of its physical and mental execution. Multiple instances of a gestural issue are addressed together when they allow for the same solution. Solutions to addressed gestural issues are often presented in the form tables. Musical examples from the score are presented in the text as necessary, but a full score for each addressed work is required for reference and complete understanding of the text.

iii In some cases, multiple possible solutions may be presented for a gestural issue in order to avoid the researcher’s personal musical interpretations so that this text may be useful to as many conducting teachers and students as possible. The solutions to the gestural problems discussed are simply suggestions. The reader is free to arrive at different conclusions than this author to solving the gestural issues presented considering one’s own musical interpretations and ideas on technique. However, the general methods and criteria used in arriving at the presented solutions should aid the reader in discovering one’s own solutions. A summary of the researcher’s findings is presented after the eight symphonies are analyzed. In the appendix, there is an index of the locations of the major gestural issues in Beethoven’s first eight symphonies.