Accordo - Chamber Music String Ensemble

Objectives: Accordo is a group of close friends from both the Minnesota Orchestra and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra who play chamber music with each other. Aside from performing classical music together, they also are involved in unique projects, such as scoring silent movies. In this activity, you will create a musical score to Charlie Chaplin’s movie, “The Piano”.

Tools/Resources: MN Original video clip, Charlie Chaplin’s “The Piano”, ipad or tablet, Garageband or similar app, headphones, pencil and paper


  1. Watch the segment and discuss:

    a. Why would playing be friends be different than playing with the regular orchestra? Why do you think the members of Accordo enjoy it so much?

    b. What is important to remember when scoring a movie? Reacting quickly to scenes and changes is mentioned…what else? Why?

    c. What is the role of a musical score in a movie? Why is it important? How does it add to the movie?

  2. Create musical score:

    a. Watch the Charlie Chaplin movie without sound and without writing anything down.

    b. Watch it again, but this time, take note of scene changes. You only need to score 2 minutes, what two minutes do you want to score?

    i. Think about the action, characters, setting, or emotions happening in your scene. How could music help enhance the movie?

    c. Using the tablet or iPad with Garageband or similar app, create a simple musical score for your scene.

    i. If necessary, write down the scene into a storyboard layout, with notes of when certain events happen and how the music should change.

    d. Share you finished musical score!

To Top