We’ve just been to a proper concert for the first time in ages – a string quartet performance of Vivaldi/ Four Seasons and some other pieces. Very enjoyable.
Anyway, whilst enjoying the recital, I was wondering why classical musicians always use sheet music, yet a rock band / jazz band / etc always play from memory ?
My first thought was that classical was more complex and so more difficult to memorise, but thinking about it, surely something by Coltrane is just a complex as something by Mr Bach ? So is it that a rock / jazz outfit would heavily rehearse a particular set – but then a classical ensemble have played these pieces many many times ?
The only thing I can think is that classical is expected to be more “precise” in that each instrument is only part of the overall piece and can’t afford to improvise in any way. But then again a guitar is only part of the overall pieces.
So do they really just read note by note and play or is there some memory also ? Is the sheet music just for show in that the audience expects it to be there as it always has been………
Like a say, a dumb question from a non musician (my musical ability extends to pressing the play button on my CD player).