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Young Composers Music Forum


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fishyfry last won the day on March 26

fishyfry had the most liked content!

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About fishyfry

  • Rank
    Advanced Composer

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  • Gender
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  • Occupation
  • Interests
    Tea, reading, good tv, and music, of course.
  • Favorite Composers
    Beethoven, Stravinsky, Debussy, Mahler, Bach, Prokofiev, Chopin, Haydn, Bernstein
  • My Compositional Styles
    Mostly neo-romantic with some impressionist influences, although I am currently trying out many different styles of composition.
  • Notation Software/Sequencers
  • Instruments Played
    Horn, Piano, Guitar

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  1. Symphony Attempt

    My instinct is yes. Flutes are generally very agile when it comes to leaps. I'm assuming you would want it to be slurred in four 16th note groupings. I don't think that would be a problem at all, but if it's questionable, I'm completely confident it would work if just the first 3 notes of each group was slurred and the fourth tongued. Get a second opinion, ideally from a flutist. I think the best way to start being more deliberate about your instrument choices would just be to educate yourself on orchestration. There are tons of great resources out there. I own Samuel Adler's book The Study of Orchestration, which is such a great resource. It contains lots of wisdom and examples from great composers. Here's a youtube channel with some helpful bits of information, and there are others like it if you look. But the best resources of all are the scores that legendary composers left for us. I would highly recommend taking a look at the scores for some of your favorite pieces, and really studying what kind of choices those composers made and taking some time to think about why they did it and how you can apply their techniques to your own work.
  2. Symphony Attempt

    Hey man. There's a lot to like here, especially for a first orchestral effort! Here are some of my thoughts on the instrumentation, but know I'm no expert and I can't really say anything definitive. M. 14-16: Not sure you need the 2nd oboe doubling with clarinet and trumpet. It goes into the very bottom of the oboe range, which isn't really idiomatic for passages in lower dynamics. M. 20: I would rethink doubling the 2nd violin trill in the trumpets and horns. It wouldn't be possible to do a half-step (F#-G) lip trill, and valve trills would have a chance of really muddying the sound there. That may be fine for your purposes, but you'd probably get a cleaner result from clarinet or oboe. M. 26-30: The 2nd flute line would probably have serious problems cutting through the rest of the dense orchestration. I get it's doubling the trumpet, but it's almost pointless because the trumpet would completely overpower it M. 40-47: The oboe doubling is again dipping a little too far into its low register. Generally, anything below the staff isn't very characteristic of the oboe. I would probably reassign that line to a clarinet, or have the oboist switch to english horn for that line, which I think may be more the sound you have in mind. Some general thoughts: The best advice I've heard for instrumentation is that your choice of instrumentation should clarify the form of the piece. I think you're getting this idea, since you chose to really cut back on the brass for the second theme after they had largely dominated the first (which is itself pretty unusual compared to what I would typically expect from orchestral writing). It seems like you get that idea, but I'd really encourage you to think about how the way you choose to orchestrate certain sections of the piece helps define how they relate to others. One last minor critique: It strikes me as odd that you have a long pause inbetween the first two themes. I really felt like the piece lost a lot of momentum and I really think it would be preferable to have a smoother transition between them. I hope I've been helpful and the things I've pointed out make sense. Forgive me if I've written anything strange, it's kind of late and I'm not thinking 100% clearly.
  3. Unfinished Band Piece

    Hi Charlie. I think there may be some kind of problem with your upload. When I attempt to download it, I get an error message saying "We could not locate the item you are trying to view"
  4. I need some help

    Personally, I think it works a lot better if you have the choir on the sustained notes leading up to doubling the melody, like you did in the second version. It creates a nice feeling of suspense during the long tones, and satisfaction once the choir comes in with the melody. Additionally, if you could start at a slightly lower dynamic and build up to the moment where the choir joins the melody, I think it would create an even more satisfying and dramatic effect. However, I don't know from this clip how this section falls in the overall context of the piece, so you'll have to judge for yourself whether that would sound good in this particular section.
  5. [Open discussion] Young Composers Magazine

    This is a really interesting concept. I will definitely be paying close attention. I'm not sure I'd have anything worthwhile to contribute, and as I'll be starting university in a few weeks, I'm not sure whether I'd have the time too. But I'll be very excited to get involved if I determine I am able to.
  6. Immunity to Dissonance

    Mesmerizing, Luis. I really enjoy it. I do think that it's possible to become immune to dissonance is possible to some extent, especially in a world that's been through impressionism, jazz, modernism etc. A well-adjusted pair of ears can appreciate extremely dissonant music, I think, as long as the composer is discriminating in how he chooses to use their dissonances. I doubt I could write anything that handled b9s and similarly dissonant intervals as well as you do here, but that's the kind of wisdom that a composer gains as he refine his craft.
  7. A Night in Winter

    Honestly, there are some wonderful things here. I don't think it's at all fair to say it's "objectively bad", even if it may be more flawed than the pieces that followed it. The main theme has just the right dark, wintry vibe and I found it seriously captivating. The only major gripe I have after one listen/reading is the entrance of the aleatoric trumpet section at m. 110. Personally, I felt like its entrance was too abrupt for such a stark contrast to the material that preceded it. I think it would really have benefited from having some more transitional material to get to that point, especially considering the narrative of the piece. Anyways, I take it that you've spend plenty of time thinking about the things you might have done differently, so I won't waste our time trying to pick apart your score. I just hope you aren't too quick to dismiss it, because it really does have some lovely ideas going for it.
  8. Rain Has Fallen (Extended Tertian)

    Very cool. There's not much I can say except I love blues and you've got a great little riff here. Do post the full set of variations when they're finished. That's an interesting assignment and it'd be neat to see how you approach those different techniques.
  9. Trio in B-flat for Viola, Violoncello, and Contrabass

    Very nice! I'm sure it must be pretty difficult to write for this strange ensemble, especially in this classical sort of idiom where any particularly dark unpleasant noises are very undesirable. I feel like you did a fine job. At no point did the choice of ensemble cause anything awkward or distracting to happen in the music. The music itself was all really beautiful and great classical-style writing, I thought.
  10. Surfa Joe

    Pretty neat. Some of the voicing is a little awkward, but I suppose that's not your fault. I could see a program like that being useful if you could quickly transcribe the harmony is generates and make adjustments to the places that are a little rough.
  11. Masterclass: THEORY 202 - Adv. Harmonic Extensions

    Finally I was able to reach some level of completion with this. I'm sorry it took me so long, and thanks for being understanding about it.
  12. 202.mp3 This is my belated writing assignment for the Theory 202 Masterclass. Apologies for the lateness of my submission.
  13. HORNS: Bass clef

    ^this is true^ I've only ever played in a concert band setting where horn parts are always on ledger lines no matter how low. It's been a big pain to me more than once.
  14. Masterclass: THEORY 202 - Adv. Harmonic Extensions

    Hi. I lost a big chunk of my work for this assignment, and I don't think it's going to be possible for me to complete by tonight. I guess that goes to show why I ought to be doing more sketching on paper.
  15. HORNS: Bass clef

    I believe that in the old style, the horn part is written an octave lower than it is to be played (i.e. a 4th below concert pitch). Nowadays horn parts in the bass clef are played in the same octave as written. (A 5th above concert pitch, same as treble clef)