On Jan. 31, 2014, five conductors from all over North America wrapped a weeklong symposium at Yorkminster Park Baptist Church, having intensely studied for five days under Noel Edison, conductor of the Elora Festival Singers and Toronto Mendelssohn choir.
When it came time to choosing the five conductors, Edison looked at their videos very closely and watched for signs of what he called "conducting DNA."
"I think the first thing is that all gesturing is very natural. It's not awkward, it's not looking like a robot, it's not school teacher-ish ( pantomimes conducting in 4/4 on every beat)—it's like a ballet dancer. And if the expression, the physical expression, and the whole inner musical thinking is connected with the body, then the physical arm and hand gesturing will be very natural.
"Choirs or orchestras sing or play what they see."