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  1. 2 likes
    No, it's not. This is arguably the most key concept in stochastic and aleatoric music. In an abstract sense, there isn't even such a thing as total indeterminacy. Consider the meaning of the term - the absence of determinants of any kind. In order to achieve that, the work may not be explicitly presented as music, or any other kind of art form, it must not be presented by anyone to anyone, it must not bear any sort of title or have any ideological connotations, it must contain only random data unfettered by any limitations of medium, or of time and space. It cannot even be a work in general, because that already determines a great deal. Really, it is ridiculous to even acknowledge the idea of total indeterminacy, to attempt to realize it is impossible. So what's the logical conclusion? That nothing is totally indeterminant and "indeterminacy" really refers to level of freedom in the composer's hands. Therefore, you can have things which are more or less indeterminant, and you can control said indeterminacy. This is a key concept in stochastic and aleatoric music, and it is crucial what parameters you decide to leave to chance or performance whim - if you leave everything up to chance or do not take the process seriously you are engaging in a mundane type of compositional masturbation which is all too common with aleatoric types. In practical terms, both highly indeterminant music and highly determinant music is devoid of meaningful information - there is either too much or too little information and it becomes static and lifeless.
  2. 1 like
    The name of the piece.... Sometimes it's something I feel when writing. Also, this sonority, in which there is no distinct pitches, makes me think about it as if somebody tries to go out... Weird! This piece goes with another one I'm finishing (Labyrinth 2), quite different, but also with a peculiar sound.
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    Hey folks, This is my first attempt at composing for choir. It's obviously not a full-scale piece. It's meant for use as a short prelude. I would love some tips on how to spice up the piano part without disrupting the peaceful nature of the piece. Thanks! P.S. I know you all prefer MP3 to MIDI so sorry about that :/ How Lovely is Thy Dwelling Place MIDI.mid
  4. 1 like
    Hey guys and girls, I just wanted to ask for your opinions on my latest work "Seemanns Mär". The score is not quite finished yet so I´m just asking for your opinion based on what you are hearing. Thank you in advance! https://soundcloud.com/jan-winkelberger/seemanns-mar JPW
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    Hello, I'm new on this forum and I think I've found a great place to share my hobby! I wish you will like my compositions and that I can find help to get better and better. I will do my best to help the other composers as much as I can as well! Here is my last music name "Maybe This Is The End?" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vd6dOODp68o Waiting for your review guys :) !
  7. 1 like
    I saw the contour of the line and treated it as kind of a rhythmic and tonal cascade. Hopefully didn't throw you off too much! Hm... perhaps marking it with legato or pseudo markings would make that a bit more clear. When I see that, I have the mindset of making as big a change to highlight the difference.
  8. 1 like
    Happy you liked it! :) I actually wasn't allowed to use pitched percussion beyond timpani so I had to make do.
  9. 1 like
    Hi Noah, The revised score is a much easier read. Nice job on the revision. Only thing I see is that your Piccolo isn't transposing down an octave correctly in spots.
  10. 1 like
    :( :( :( I hope it comes out okay in the end, Austenite!
  11. 1 like
    Hi Kmshna; One exercise I used to do a lot to improve arranging, is write out a detailed analysis of songs for myself. I started with graph paper and drew in a line. for every instrument that might start and stop, more wave if the part got busier, larger if the part got louder etc. You can make up your own icons, for different ideas.. you soon create a vocabulary for yourself. Find other songs that have ideas you want to incorporate, I had to listen to a lot of ballads with drums to get the feel of what a good drummer can do.. I did this for every instrument.. Then used colored felt tip pens when motifs, melodies were repeated on each track.. I eventually created a singing bunch of symbols... Sometimes I would notate the melody.. But other times just teach them the melody.. Then I would mark it up with felt tip pens, to symbolize, soft whisper, crescendo the energy or melody up/down.. staccato notes, long held out notes little steps for several notes on a vowel to move etc. I too can get too busy with multiple interweaving of parts, I love to do it. But got complaints.. I think the brain can take up to 4 - 6 different melodic parts at once, then it becomes to confusing, and the listener loses interest. If the parts are closely related, more can happen,, and it can get very interweaving, if it goes back to be simpler too.. all of this depends of the style or music and your particular skills.. Yes, time and practice, and an instant playback medium.. you play it, and hear it back right away.. I quite often play pieces all nite when I go to bed.. So I hear them a lot of times before I fall asleep.. Also just play and repeat while sitting around listening.. I make up a mental list, and then fix the issues.. Something may sound great the first bunch of listenings but by the 40th,, just sound like some extra stuck in, or it serves no musical need. I would often scour the internet for good midi arrangements, or even buy some. I would lay them up in Logic Pro's score Editor, to get a visual sense of what they had done.. Even though this piece didn't have much in common with my piece.. It was a great visual aid, the in the build up and resolution of musical density.. Eventually I took some online courses at Berklee music.. Great but expensive.. There are free courses on line. Coursera.org is one. there are others. These will not curtail your creativity, contrary to what self taught musicians might tell you.. They are tools. You then decide when to use that tool, or modify it to suit your needs. But the point is you know of it, and what it can add to your musical abilities.. Keep up the great work..
  12. 1 like
    (I think) At M15 we have the string section (minus the D.B.) play a quarter note slurred to an eighth. The chords start as a EbM chord, then transition to an Fm/D chord. Personally, I'd switch the 1st & 2nd Violins to add a consistency of rank, but that's preference and no one really cares (including a lot of famous composers) lol However, those two chords play pp and staccato their last note of that measure. Because of playback it'd play more of a mf sound, rather a true pp. Even though they play alone, a pp still wouldn't be heard as closely due to the louder section play a couple measures before. Either a crescendo from a p, or mp would be sufficient to carry. Finale, Sibelius, Musescore and a lot of other playback machines don't follow their dynamics to the instruments and capabilities, but rather the MIDI file that could be cleanly stuck on. One of the better VS libraries to come out solely for notation software that is being sold right now is Noteperformer for Sibelius. Anyways, dynamics are really loose to an actual orchestra. They're not intensely followed, but providing close dynamics allows a smoother rehearsal for any performer and gives the sense that an individual does not need to wait for a conductor/director to give them their articulations and dynamics themselves.
  13. 1 like
    There's not much to say about this piece, it is a three-part fugue with modest pretensions in that sweetest of keys, D minor. Like my canons the primary material is derived from encoded names in mod-7 form with free accidentals.
  14. 1 like
    I agree completely. This starts off with tons of potential, but then doesn't develop. I recommend taking that great first idea and manipulating it so it changes into something else. Play with variations on that idea for a while, practice developing it, changing keys and meters and rhythms. Try to take us on a journey, one with more than just one color.
  15. 1 like
    It's lovely! m. 5, Bb vs. B m. 64, Bb vs. B, also a very abrupt transition into the next kind of rhythmic section. Your syncopations are nice, but should be notated differently... dotted rhythms should not over extend the middle of the bar or internal phrase. Could do with some more chord changes along with some really nice peaks and valleys. All of it kind of stays within the same dynamic, atmospheric, and harmonic language, and I think branching out could help. In terms of moving, this would be a good time to modulate (either by half step or submediant), if you wanted to, and the rhythmic idea you transitioned into can the basis of this new section. It has a lot of potential! Good luck
  16. 1 like
    Awesome chords in the beginning! After a while though, the F# in the F major chord became a lot more annoying then blended, especially since it isn't a passing tone. The middle section could use some more expansive chords and texture development, since it really doesn't sound that "epic", simply loud. This problem with too similar sections persists for the rest of the piece. It just needs more, in my opinion. I want to be attached and fall in love with the journey and I'm not really getting a sense of that here.
  17. 1 like
    Hi Noah, I think it's not so much stylistic as technical and notation differences. Unfortunately, while there are tons of materials written on the conventions for orchestra, there is comparatively little on conventions for concert band. As a conductor, I see frustratingly little standardization in things like score layouts. For example, I've seen the bassoon in three different spots in different scores! Anyway, for the saxophones, I don't think it's necessary to add a soprano since that instrument is not consistently available. It'd probably make more sense to bring things down an octave in some spots and realize they're going to be prominent in others.
  18. 1 like
    Hi Noah, Nicely done! I love the story and they way the musical textures track with it. Also, very nice use of the colors of the wind ensemble for variety. A couple of cautions about the saxophones: Alto and tenor saxes above more than two ledger lines above the staff (transposed) project a lot. This can be fine in a solo passage, but high saxophones can dominate tutti textures (and not in a good way). Also, note that intonation in that register for saxes is problematic as they tend to go sharp trying to maintain the compression needed for those notes. Finally, there are conventions for wind bands that are different from orchestral writing. Some comments on band-specific things in the score: General 1. When possible, favor flat keys over sharps. Db and Gb are highly preferrable to C# and F# for a band, and even Cb can be easier to read than B if you use a lot of E#s and B#s. Remember that the transposing instruments in a band universally add sharps, so a key signature that starts with sharps gets gnarly pretty fast. 2. Check the spelling of your lines after transposing. A line in all sharps in concert pitch will start producing double sharps when transposed. Instrument-specific 1. The piccolo is notated with a standard treble clef. The octave transposition is assumed. Using the transposing treble clef may introduce a question as to which octave the part should be played in. 2. The current practice is to group all double reeds together from high to low, so Bassoons would go immediately below Oboes. This makes it clearer for the conductor to distinguish WW families by sight. 3. Bass Clarinet is always in treble clef, written up M9 from concert pitch. Bass clef is no longer routinely taught to bass clarinetists, even in universities. 4. Trumpets go above Horns in a wind ensemble score (opposite from orchestra). This arranges the brass from high to low. 5. Trumpets are always in Bb. Many wind band trumpet players will not even own a C Trumpet. 6. Horns are always in treble clef, regardless of ledger lines. 7. When you get the opportunity to perform this, please provide both treble clef (in Bb, up M9) and bass clef (concert pitch) Euphonium parts. The players will thank you! 8. The key of the Tuba should not be specified. Most wind ensemble tuba players will be playing a BBb, since that provides the largest sound to support the band. Some will use an oversized Eb to do the same thing, but it's not something to count on. CC and F tubas are rarer in bands since they are harder to tune with the Bb brass (trumpets, trombones, and euphonium). 9. Always write ledger lines below the staff for the tubas in their parts. It is acceptable to use 8vb in a score to minimize ledger lines. The transposing bass clef should not be used for this purpose. 10. You might get something unexpected when writing x noteheads for the Snare Drum. Some drummers will see that an assume it's on the rim. (If there was a specific effect for the x noteheads, I didn't see it called out.) 11. Snare and Bass Drum can share a 5-line percussion staff. Place bass drum in the first space, stems down; place snare drum in the third space, stems up. This is a common convention dating from the Sousa era.
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    I'm just starting out on this forum also forgive me if I am not familiar with any customs towards how to approach giving comments/feedback. I love the playfulness of the piece during just the first part of the piece (around 2:30). I also enjoy the obvious tension chosen to show an intimacy of two young/fresh lovers in the very opening where the richer middle section of the strings play out. There are a few spots where the dynamics blend well through playback, but wouldn't make much sense during a performance. Also, this is quite the raunchy story in variation two (which is obviously appropriate to explain the steps of the variation but still). Hope I helped in some sort of way
  21. 1 like
    Uhhhh sure. That's fine. I'll give the other people who've posted here already the time and chance to edit their stuff if necessary too.
  22. 1 like
    I feel like I'm being beamed onto an alien ship! This is some very satisfying, very trippy music. I just closed my eyes and let it wash over me. You took me on a little journey. Well done!
  23. 1 like
    Really beautiful scenery in your music. You use the orchestra very well. I love the colors you use, and the changes in rhythm throughout the entire piece. At times heroic and inspiring, other times mysterious and breathy. You totally captured the silly militarism of Munchausen. I also love the klezmer that occasionally pops up. My favorite vignette was "The Snowy Village". It really sets the right mood, reminds me a bit of Scheherazade. Well done all around!
  24. 1 like
    Very nice, I really enjoyed listening to this. For me at least, it was hard to follow the discrete elements of the story in the first half (the sections to my ear sounded pretty similar in content) but was far clearer in the second half starting with the Baron's stint in the Russian army. Great choice of subject which to my knowledge, I'm not aware of other examples even though the subject certainly makes a great basis for a musical setting.
  25. 1 like
    I kind of mean this, but more in reference to your vertical sections, rather than your horizontal melodies. It feels segmented, if that makes more sense. It feels like each section does its own thing, then moves on in a very short span of time, which is jarring to the listener. You can hear the tone noticeably change. The melodies are so ranged in the beginning that you would almost have to incorporate pitch sets to make "motivic" as it stands, so don't worry so much about that. I do think you hurry to the next idea though, but not because you're taking too long, but because you're not giving enough time.
  26. 1 like
    I think that this work is much modern that it seems to be. What makes it sound (to me) like baroque-classic is the lack of dynamic contrasts and the, not always, but often presence of 8's and 16's... I mean, variation in the pattern with rests or other techniques. In fact it's the same MOnarcheon told you before. Anyvay, it's very nice!
  27. 1 like
    In addition to fishyfry's comments, I would say that the sections could use some more meat in them. It's thematic, yes, but that doesn't mean that the sections need to be underdeveloped. Each one has promise, and I'd like to see you go further with those. Transitions and connective fibers might also help. Atmosphere shifts are very powerful but lose their impact when done without explanation too many times. Your timbre and tone shifts between sections don't connect the piece enough for me. 3:51 was way too awkward harmonically for me... that might need fixing. Harmonic treatment was quite nice for not knowing what to do... tip: establishing a tonic and dancing around the defining tones with perfect intervals is a great way to stay ambiguous. Cheers!
  28. 1 like
    So I've been gone for, like, 5 years. I'm back with a new piece that I finished late last year. I've been working on it for a long while but finally got it finished and sent out to competitions, which I promptly lost. :D Keeping the losing streak alive! Have a listen and let me know what you think. Program Notes After taking a trip to Istanbul a few years ago I was greatly moved by the culture and people of the massive city and inspired to write this piece. It follows in a long line of “ethnic” capriccios such as Tchaikovsky’s Capriccio Italien and Rimsky-Korsakov’s Capriccio Espagnol. It takes the famous elements of Islamic and Middle Eastern music such as maqam scales and unusual time signatures, and puts them in the Western framework of the orchestra. Much like the city itself, this piece bridges east and west. The capriccio is divided into four sections, with fragments of the same theme being woven throughout: The Introduction, depicting the Azan, or call to prayer. It is often heard echoing throughout the city for miles as the various mosques intone the call. Ottoman Empire influence is heard in the march depicting the goings-on around Tokapi Palace, the home of the Sultan. Janissary Bands and Ottoman military drills echo out a humorous and grandiose march. Next the more reverent side of the city is depicted with Byzantine Chants in the Hagia Sophia, one of the oldest and largest churches, then mosques, in the world. Scattered throughout is various Islamic intonations as if heard from the Blue Mosque a block away, considered one of the most impressive mosques in the world. Finally, we go to the Bazaars and streets of Istanbul, where bands play a unique blend of Eastern European and Middle Eastern music. Asymmetrical time signatures and non-western scales come together for the final dance. Score attached. Rendering on Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/tokkemon/istanbul-kapricyosu-istanbul-capriccio
  29. 1 like
    I think it very well done for a first attempt.. You have some very nice things going on.. My personal opinion would be , to soften the snare drum, it draws too much attention to itself. Or perhaps use the stick sound of the snare.. Built the drums like you did some of the different parts.. Start drums a bit simpler.. maybe kick alone for 2-4 bars, then stick, less busy pattern for a couple of bars, then full on. A simpler tom roll. excellent drum stop at end.. On 4th listen now.. I love the interweaving of parts. yes good work..
  30. 1 like
    Oh my...I have to say your choice of instruments and where they appear are unique in a really good way. I like the general melody and the way you use your brass instruments were good too. I think ending the piece on the same drum rhythm can be worked on a bit more. But overall I loved it.
  31. 1 like
    I like it, but I don't connect with it. It sounds like it'd be a great way to show off your skills to a crowd or some friends, but there's no main idea to latch on to and remember. The melodic content that exists in there is very under-used and undeveloped. If the listener can't ascribe meaning to some easily recognizable melodic or harmonic motif, they can't really feel anything for your composition. That makes the name misleading, since there's no tension or drama to justify such an angsty title. I do hope I'm not being too rough with you. I did enjoy it, but in the same way I'd enjoy fireworks and that's okay. Just think of a better title to reflect the razzle-dazzle of the actual music.
  32. 1 like
    I. Probably better to not loop the ostinato so much before the melody comes in. I'd smooth your transitions as well; a lot of them strike me as sudden, despite the effort you put in to make them continuous. The end is abrupt to me also and doesn't does lead into itself. This also reminds me of a war victory theme than a fantasy title screen. Good orchestration though! You know how to layer voices. II. There's a lot of sections for it to be used as accompaniment music, though in fairness I don't know your game. Also good orchestration, but your use of chromatics could be smoother in build sections.
  33. 1 like
    Hi luderart, In an attempt to focus more on the site and innovations, I'm going to suspend the writing challenge. However, I will keep my promise and review this piece as well as post a recording of it later for you. It's a very nice sounding piece, but quite safe. It all stays within the confines of a pretty lower range and doesn't develop into the higher up. Which would be fine, I just would have liked something a little more complex if it were to stay in that range as a sort of rhythmic or timbral development. On the whole, bowing use is pretty good with nice jumps and tonal fluidity. I'll have something for you in the next week or so, hopefully.
  34. 1 like
    Good suggestions. Let me address them. New pieces, please. Not previously written. Up to 2. This is not a competition, it's a challenge. It's my job as a reviewer on this site to review pieces to the best of my ability. It's also an implied judging requirement, to let contestants know the reason one piece was picked over the other.
  35. 1 like
    Not bad for a first try in the slightest! You did a very intuitive compositional technique of making the repeated chord progression less obvious by adding things into the texture, which was a great move. However, I would still suggest you change the chord progression in the beginning a little more. You did a really good job in the latter half, but a little more variation in the beginning would be a nice change of pace. This is a personal thing, but I like for things to resolve in the end... you ending on a bII chord works very well, but feels incomplete. You don't have to resolve it to the minor one chord if you don't want. The counterpoint (or multiple melodic lines at once) was actually quite well done. However, it gets very cluttered and tones start to cross each other on the staff. This opens the very convoluted subject of "voice leading" which you'll get more of a sense of as you go along, but with such a large number of things going on at once, the direction or flow of the piece can be stifled a little bit. Just things to think about. Keep up the good work!
  36. 1 like
    I wrote the music for this student film about two years ago now. Not exactly minimalism, but I was required to adhere to very minimalistic composition guidelines.
  37. 1 like
    It's generally very nice. Be careful about how you work your dissonances and crossed voices. Measure 26 stood out to me as bizarre, since you resolved, off beat, to a dissonance. Measure 10 features the biggest problem of crossed voices. The problem with triplets is that it's very easy to accidentally miss over a weird passing tone in your listening. I'd encourage you to go back and look through your piece, and see if notes conflict with each other. Notation stuff: m. 21 - Make sure you use the proper way to do syncopations, with the tied over third beat. This looks intimidating to performers. All - Engraving is a bit sloppy. Move some things around. m. 13 - I'd add two up bows on the quarter note triplet to have everything start down. m. 25 - Too long a bows. Split it up. All - Bowing issues. Not as bad as m. 25, but you need to split up these bowings better. m. 46 - Last note should be a dotted half. It was quite pleasant to listen to. Cheers!
  38. 1 like
    Sorry for taking sooooooooo long to answer this, but my master's degree duties are driving me crazy. I just can't say enough... Well, as for the winner... @fishyfry Congratulations!!! Your piece is extraordinary! I surely will include it in my repertoire. I also plan to record it, but it may take like an eternity, as I'm really busy at the university. Maybe on April, my (theoretical) "vacation". I'd also like to mention @Monarcheon's Sketch No. 136, especially the second movement (which I could play without all the difficulties of the other movements). I really liked some parts of it, and I may give it a further try later on. Thank all you guys for the entries. And sorry again for my long absence. I may remain absent from the site for quite a long time, maybe up to next year's first semester. Wish me luck o/
  39. 1 like
    I don't remember if I posted this here before or on another web site, sorry. I've always loved Herrmann's music, so concise, so striking. Never a wasted note. So this sounds a little bit Psycho, but not. The Titles sequence is only 1:30 long so the challenge was to forecast the mood of the film in that time. The Birds has no score, so I used it as an exercise in scoring and I wrote about 60 minutes of music for the hour and a half film. But Universal Pictures took it off youtube. They didn't complain about the title sequence, though, so I left it up. Haha
  40. 1 like
    Thanks Martim for the constructive feedback, it's good to know other composer's opinion (pro or not): it will me help rework the piece.
  41. 1 like
    Actually measures 14-17 make sense to me as a transition moment to initiate the measure 18, but measure 13 just seems as not the best way to be written. Im not a pro in fact, Im just giving my opinion as a listener!
  42. 1 like
    Hey, awesome! Listening time... :) Besides the clashing notes mentioned and that you have fixed, it's a nice motive. The rondo structure doesn't really bother me, BUT you have a choice here... 1) keep the structure as is and choose strategic places to develop the motives or 2) develop the structure and leave the motives unchanged Keeping that in mind as you write will help to strengthen the weak sections, almost like constructing a floor or a wall--find the weak places and think strategically about how you can strengthen them. I just listened to Winter and Lente one after the other and it feels nice, so both sections compliment each other to my ears. That's definitely cool. Keep working on the details, this is good work! Gustav Johnson
  43. 1 like
    Hi all, I received some interesting feedback on my Melody for piano ''Winter''. One of the comments was by @Gustav Johnson. He encouraged me to compose a suite based on the seasons (Dutch: Seizoenen). The Suite is called Piano Suite ''Seizoenen.'' The Winter is the first movement and can be found here: http://www.youngcomposers.com/t34743/melody-for-piano-winter/#play.The Lente (Spring) is the second movement. I tried to imitate typical Spring elements, such as whistling birds and animals that wake up from hibernation. Feedback would be very nice! Kind regards, Maarten
  44. 1 like
    Pleasant. 1. I would make your modulation back to F# a little more clear. 2. In the second measure of every main phrase, the pseudo-chromaticism is off-putting, since the process begins as such, but becomes diatonic by the end of the bar, normally it's the other way around (tip to make something not chromatic sound chromatic), but I can kind of see the V - I approach. Maybe look into it. It's overall quite good. Pop songs aren't this short though. :)
  45. 1 like
    I am glad you like the music! Of course you can say that the music does not sound like Spring for you. I think every person has his own associations and feelings with music. Music is very personal. This piece is about my Spring associations and feelings. Some people can easily recognise the Spring and some don't. Comparing Maestro Shostakovich's work with this composition is a great compliment to me. Thank you!
  46. 1 like
    Hello, First of all, this is indeed a very good work. Very deep melody, a well constructed harmonic progression. But I have to say that sometimes the music loses some clarity. I dont know if it was on purpose, so I would like to hear from you. I give you an example: measures 10-11 vs. 13 Best regards!
  47. 1 like
    Hi Maarten, If you're getting multiple composers telling you they want to hear more development in your music, take it as a compliment. We want you to explore your ideas because we're interested in seeing where they go.
  48. 1 like
    There is a danger in listening too often to the same piece while it is in progress or immediately after it's completed. The closer we are to our music, the more inclined we are to like it simply because it's familiar. One of the things I've built into my own composition process is a waiting period after I complete the first draft of a piece to gain a measure of objectivity on it before beginning to edit. Regarding the ease of the harmonic transition between into m. 24, half diminished 7th chords are more dissonant than minor 7th chords. So, despite being the correct function for the spot, it will not make the transition sound any easier. Your progression immediately before also implies at least three different keys before landing the listener in D major. It's a very nicely written piece of harmonic deception, by the way. Now, to the more philosophical subjects... On the subject of recapitulations, development and recapitulation is different in concept from simple ABA form because development has consequences. In the simplest sonata form, the development features enough harmonic instability to solidify the tonic key such that both subjects are stated in the tonic key instead of in separate keys. The first movement of Eine Kleine Nachtmusik is a good example of this. The development does not go terribly far afield form the thematic material and the main subjects is restated nearly verbatim while the second subject is modified to work in the home key. In more complex sonata forms, the creative ideas from the development actually change the nature of the recapitulation. In another Mozart work, Symphony No. 40 in G minor, the development section is designed to fake the listener into thinking they're hearing the recapitulation. The entire development is about deception. So what does Mozart do when it's time for the actual recap? He brings the violins ahead of the lower strings, making the real recap look like yet another fake. It's really hip writing. The recap does its job of returning the listen "home" musically, but it carries forward the idea of the development. Beethoven, being more strongly driven by expressive desires over form, was more aggressive in bending recapitulations to fit the narrative context. In his 5th Symphony, the recap of the first movement is orchestrated very differently from its original appearance, carrying over elements from the development in the background. The orchestration is lighter and perhaps even more "tired". There is a reflective little soliloquy in the oboe at one point. These changes feel like a consequence of the development, which portrays a person weakening the face of fate. In the fourth movement, Beethoven wants the recap of the A theme to feel very much the same as it did the first time, like a bright, victorious fanfare bringing light to the darkness. So, not only does he recap it verbatim, he precedes it by quoting the last portion of the third movement so the fanfare has the same dark, foggy texture to contrast against. Structurally, it boils down to this: the bigger the difference between the subject and its development, the bigger the consequence that has to be dealt with in the recapitulation. Keep that in mind as you're studying classical works. On the question of making music for the listeners vs. you personally, it's a balancing act every composer has to grapple with. The challenge of communicating through music is finding the right metaphors and language to make ourselves understood to our desired audience. Sometimes, the thing that totally makes sense to us as composers doesn't work for an audience. The question then becomes whether you as the composer like that thing enough to stick to it or whether it makes sense look for another solution. It's a judgement call each and every time. When it comes to finding out what works and what doesn't, this forum is a great resource. Not only will folks tell you, but they're fellow composers and can tell you why. Finally, nothing says you have to go back and revise this piece. I believe it was Tom Petty who said that projects are never completed, only abandoned. We grow as composers by tackling new ideas and writing new pieces.
  49. 1 like
    For my sketches project, I asked friends to give me material for inspiration. The following poem was one of the responses and I adapted in the best I could into piano form. The space between my bones and the air feels too big In this speculum there are only shards of shame to pierce me and to compress me Until I can fit the mold of perfection With each failure I can feel the whirlpool churning me up and spitting me back into its grave In this casket I will be filled with the balm of perfection To decrease the difference between me and that unattainable god Drinking life and purging sustenance to keep running away and to become the master of failure, until I can control my own flesh In my vortex of thoughts all that are left are dismembered memories of those battles I’ve waged And never won I have sacrificed my organs and veins to the gods above for achievement And still can never win This stalemate for perfection has left my skin rubbed raw with obsession Scrubbing away the blemishes that go as deep as my numerous sins The scars etched in my mind no longer leave any terrain whole My temple demolished in my quest for flawlessness And these lifelines in my palms are fading too fast for me to bring back my heart I’m trapped in a prison of desperation Of escaping from failure but into the fire of evolutionary relentless times I am bound by serrated bindings of always trying to be better, to be the best For the sake of my hell I am evaporating for wisdom So that my fortune can bring me back to my cavern of dead dreams waterlogged with failure I am tired Of praying to the enlightened And hoping for brilliance And shaving off life to make me more clever I am too flawed to please this jury of mirrors And I am exhausted from running into the looking glass and seeing too much and yet not enough I have put labels on happiness and deemed them unimportant Chosen discipline as my scythe to carve out my smile This shroud I have decided upon is my emaciated love Devoid of imagination for the cruel shape of perfection High expectations have created a ladder that extends past the limits of the universe And too many rungs are broken for me to claw my way up And I’m too afraid of the fall that would shatter the safety of at least being above the sea of despair I am clinging to splinters and twigs of ideal If only I could scald away the fear of mediocrity Expunge the masochist and assuage the fragments that might lead to happiness From before the paralysiss of not being good enough rooted me, Deer in the headlights, Frozen in the icy pursuit of perfection.
  50. 1 like
    A lot of really harshly clashing tones that don't resolve all throughout this piece. Examples: :11, poor resolution of higher voice tones. :15, poor resolution of higher voice tones. :17, this would be okay if it shot off to something else but it doesn't... it goes right back to the same atmosphere. :23, clarinet A# is a bad resolving tone. One needs to understand regular classicism to understand neoclassicism, there's just a lot of modulations, rather than a proper sustained line through the whole thing. Prokofiev's Classical Symphony is a must for you to listen to. There's also a lot of repeated material which does get tiring after a little bit. Think of it like a rondo where the A theme is there and comes back, but isn't overwhelming.