The legacy of Choral Director Robert Shaw: Beyond technique to music in communities | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 5, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 1752-6299
  • E-ISSN: 1752-6302


The article examines Choral Director Robert Shaw’s approach and explores whether these innovations constitute a lasting legacy for amateurs and community singers beyond the world of professional choral directors. After a brief biographical overview of Shaw’s contributions and achievements, the author outlines four specific innovations attributed to Shaw and his work with choruses all over the world. The author sang with Shaw for ten years and introduces her own personal notes from musical scores, as well as videos and Shaw’s Dear People letters to describe his preparation and warm up approaches, attention to the spiritual in music, use of metaphorical and imagistic language to teach choirs, and his explicit belief in the power of community in choral singing.


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