An Orchestra without a Conductor? Inconceivable!
The Olin Conductorless Orchestra (OCO) - an ensemble, minus conductor - features instrumentalists in leadership, communicative, and collaborative roles. Dedicated to orchestral performance in the concerted spirit of chamber music, the orchestra forges individual participation, active listening, and group-motivation into performances that have established it as the only conductorless orchestra composed of engineers - in the world!
Since its Fall 2002 inception, OCO has been a Project-Based Learning (PBL) course where students operate the classroom, and the professor contributes as guide-on-the-side, coach, and re-orchestrator of works chosen by the group. In helping to run rehearsals, students develop leadership, teamwork, and communication skills in a large team environment. With an essentially flat hierarchy that incorporates an ever-evolving sense of culture and cooperation as a working ensemble, OCO functions as a team of musicians - regardless of position - comprising students, faculty, and external guests, all dedicated to making good music with intensity, camaraderie, excitement, and humor.