Jared Steven Destro

King Lear Overture in C minor

9 posts in this topic

Hello all! This is my entry for the summer competition based on a work by Shakespeare. I connected the most with his tragedy King Lear, and so I wrote a large orchestral piece about it, with various moments from the play annotated (corresponding to the music). Enjoy!

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Sorry, these big orchestral pieces take some time to listen to carefully.

King Lear is one of my favourite tragedys by Shakespeare. Tha somber intro has taken me straightly to the somber landscapes I imagine in this work (I have in mind a russian film version, black and white). The presto describes exactly what you mean (the rage of Lear), wonderful; like the part V...

Well, it's a great work. I like the programatic exposition you make, it really reminds the tragedy (if one knows about it). And if not, is a beautiful piece.

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This is a pretty stark contrast to the other orchestral entry by Marc. Larger in size, but I think it's way more straightforward. You chose some heavy tragic material, so the orchestral forces make sense. The beginning is definitely my favorite part. I'm a sucker for slow brooding intros.

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I'm especially delighted that you choose to write an orchestral overture/tone poem, just as I did. Interestingly, the similarities seem to end right there - since when it comes to orchestration, your choices were quite different. Granted, writing for orchestra is always a dauting task for all but the most skilled composers, yet you seem to be at home with a Mozart-sized ensemble (with the tuba as the sole "newcomer") to demonstrate your musical storytelling abilities. There's so much fury at some passages of the piece, one can't help but feel intimidated by King Lear's growing insanity.

Congrats for a very nice achievement!

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I do like how this piece sounds very much. And I don't want to sound negative because the piece really is nice, but things like string slurs and how fast they can play in the faster sections are kind of an issue if it were to ever be transferred over to a live performance.

But that's just small stuff. The opening really got me engrossed and hearing the motions of it was really great!

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This is another entry that frightens me. Fantastic work. You have perfectly captured the various emotions in the different parts of your work - a few motives reminded me of your Inferno Suite.

Off-topic: I saw your birthdate on your profile (happy bday for tomorrow, by the way) - I'm sure you'll become something terrific in the next few years, if you already are at this stage now. We are 3 months apart, and it seems to me your compositional style is far more mature than mine.

The game is on, this is going to be an interesting competition. Good luck to you Jared !

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1 hour ago, Marc O'Callaghan said:

This is another entry that frightens me. Fantastic work. You have perfectly captured the various emotions in the different parts of your work - a few motives reminded me of your Inferno Suite.

Off-topic: I saw your birthdate on your profile (happy bday for tomorrow, by the way) - I'm sure you'll become something terrific in the next few years, if you already are at this stage now. We are 3 months apart, and it seems to me your compositional style is far more mature than mine.

The game is on, this is going to be an interesting competition. Good luck to you Jared !

 

Thank you everyone for the comments, and thank you so much Marc for the birthday wishes. That's very nice!

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Great work! The introduction is my favorite section -- very tragic and engaging, reminding me a bit of Wagner's 'Prelude and Liebestod' to Tristan and Isolde. Once the piece really gets going, the contrast of the bombastic primary motif with the quick, almost jittery subordinate theme creates a lot of interest.

The only decision I am questioning is the Picardy third at the end; the obvious comparison would be to Beethoven's Fifth Symphony (also in C minor, as it happens). I think that maybe, for a work that had been so delightfully dark throughout its body, the major chord conclusion was a bit out of place. Others may disagree.

That criticism is relatively small, though; I really admire your work on the whole and think this piece in particular is a fantastic overture. Well done.

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4 minutes ago, Noah Brode said:

Great work! The introduction is my favorite section -- very tragic and engaging, reminding me a bit of Wagner's 'Prelude and Liebestod' to Tristan and Isolde. Once the piece really gets going, the contrast of the bombastic primary motif with the quick, almost jittery subordinate theme creates a lot of interest.

The only decision I am questioning is the Picardy third at the end; the obvious comparison would be to Beethoven's Fifth Symphony (also in C minor, as it happens). I think that maybe, for a work that had been so delightfully dark throughout its body, the major chord conclusion was a bit out of place. Others may disagree.

That criticism is relatively small, though; I really admire your work on the whole and think this piece in particular is a fantastic overture. Well done.

 

Thank you for the comment! I thought about the Picardy third because of how the tragedy ends; although there is a lot of death and uncertainty brought to Lear's through the actions of his daughters, I see it as though all the evil has left the kingdom, and even though it's uncertain as to what will happen, I feel as though there is harm thought could've been done is over with and gone.

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