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Everything posted by Monarcheon

  1. I think you had the right idea of creating a focused challenge by way of a compositional aspect gradually increasing in difficulty. And I don't think you're wrong for making it something like that either. Emotional/inspirational challenges are far more difficult to judge objectively, so it makes sense. Alternatively, you can have it be very food-challenge-y by having the challenges be very different every time, and successful incorporation/execution is key, and "taste" and "presentation" are things to always keep in mind. Like, "make a dish with duck" is the main task, but correct pairings and looks are always a part of it. (i.e. R1: Use the electric guitar, R2: chromatic canon, R3: Interval vector [021030]). <--- This is a little too restrictive, but you know what I'm going for.
  2. @Noah Brode This sounds fun! I feel like we'd need to have more than a minimum of 6 though, no? The ten you mention in your first round sounds more plausible. The way you have it setup is much more an orchestration challenge than a composition one; that is to say, the main thing that gets harder every time is sound orchestration, rather than execution of ideas. You run the risk of alienating or scaring off some people who aren't super comfortable with style emulation via orchestration (a field of study in and of itself). I really like the idea of a kind of elimination/survivor kind of long form deal. I'd be willing to participate or judge.
  3. That's a very workable fugue subject – easy to answer. There's a brief period after the full answer in the dominant called a codetta where the composer uses free counterpoint to get back to the tonic. Normally, it'll be shorter than the subject is as to not take away from its importance.
  4. Pretty nice. I'd maybe leave your arpeggiation behind for some of the new material sections, but it's whatever. Notation thing: instead of the 2 dotted eighths, it's more common to see a duplet for the hemiola.
  5. Again, work on the notation of the rhythms... using 4/4 sets certain layout expectations for the player. You have a lot of confidence in your timpani player. It's not impossible, especially with 5 timpani, but certainly harder to retune them especially near the end of the piece. Timpani scales are part of audition repertoire, but typically much slower for obvious reasons.
  6. Gorgeous work. I don't know how much people in a religious position of power know about the original reasons for stile antico, but the vast majority of the piece seemed to follow a lot of the rules. There were a couple spots where it could have been tightened up, but I'm not so nitpicky where I'd point out everything wrong, since on the whole it is quite good. For example, On page 20, system 2, m. 2, there's a leap away from a tritone interval formed between the tenor and the bass, which is a no go in the more conservative style. Parallel dissonances show up here and there, like the last page, second system, first measure, between the alto and tenor on beat 4 (the perfect 4th is considered dissonant in this time). To use a more contemporary term, your frequent use of Schenkerian voice exchange really helps the counterpoint out which is something I wish I knew helped when I was starting out in this very particular style. Complaining about this seems stupid though if being 100% accurate wasn't of interest to you. While I'd normally adopt a "composer intent doesn't really matter", I feel the same about historical particularities unless it's an exercise in said historicism. Very well done.
  7. This is a lovely little work. It's much appreciated the return to A section material isn't so overly elaborated on. I know it's kind of a Chopin thing to do, but I'm not really a huge fan of leaving melody notes to hang and dry, especially when the inner voice stuff remains pretty constant. The fact that they're done in octaves makes me want to believe there's something more important happening there than just establishing material.
  8. I'm not qualified to judge its capacity as a learning tool, but it's a pretty cool piece as is. There are some syncopated inconsistencies with how you present the meter. I understand its a hemiola effect and you want that to be clear, but since it's a bit of a delayed hemiola, it might be nice to see how it all fits in, otherwise it looks a little strange.
  9. This is a pretty good opener. The only thing that threw me a bit was the opening – A minor is eventually your key center, so introducing it early is a good idea, except it sounds like the major 6th in the ambiguous "C" tonality you start off with. Maybe it was just my ears, but because of this I heard it as a C major opening, even without the third.
  10. In a lot of scores, there is actually just 3 full pages of rests for those instruments that happen to not play. I know many conductors who prefer this visual score style as opposed to the alternative, where instruments that don't play are simply removed from the pages that don't include them (excluding the first page – the example below is a bad one of this). Two slashes are used to indicate a break in the system if only few enough instruments play to warrant a page break.
  11. Seems like a bit of a straw man, no? My point is simply knowing the artistic concepts doesn't translate to good art inherently. That takes time, and yes, experimentation.
  12. I struggled to understand your Affekt here. Is it serene, energetic, comical, etc.? I suppose it could be a mix, but the fact that the style never changes makes certain moments like the chromatics at :40 or the leading tone pedal at the end a little strange. It's got some good interplay, some of it just clashes for me.
  13. I'm not sure if you have a rock/metal background but the use of open fifths/fourths (power chords) doesn't translate very well to piano, especially in counterpoint. It's generally some pretty fluid interplay, but vertical movement of either of those two intervals really puts a hamper of things, when some extended harmony could have a lot cooler to implement through oblique motion.
  14. I agree with Ken on the bass line front. A drone really isn't the same thing. Very smooth modulations which is really nice; normally I wouldn't suggest this, but accentuating these might be a great touch to add, especially lingering on common tones!
  15. It's decent as film music, but the use of motivic expansion of the William's score is what makes it intriguing... I notice that yours is a lot more sinister sounding than the original which is honestly very welcome. The use of parallel-related keys was a nice touch to add to it.
  16. It's very nice. I found the overuse of linear intervallic patterns a little bit too much, especially in the beginning.
  17. I'm a huge fan of no. 2 (except for the use of the doubled fifth interval (G5) in the rhapsodic section), but not as big a fan of 3. This one seems very alone, which would be fine if it weren't for the contrast of actually alone ascending lines.
  18. The ideas are good, and it seems to have almost a Baroque-ish harmonic form. I would just watch out for your use of parallel dissonances in the counterpoint, especially when they are voice exchanges. Even if they are brief, it's interpreted a moment of stasis when movement is otherwise your goal.
  19. A couple times within here you do the "repetition of a dissonant figure is okay as long as it's repeated" thing, which is fine in some circumstances, but doesn't work here because of the stratification of your registers. It's also not alluded to ever happening because of the style changes. The section at 3:50 is completely unnecessary. Sounds like an improvisation where the player was unsure of where to go from the tonic chord. We don't hear it in relation to E anyway, so the direct modulation interpretation makes it sound incomplete.
  20. This piece doesn't really have a jazz feel to me in the first place. The drum beat is only reminiscent of the later jazz historical periods and a lot of your harmonies are often inverted in ways that make chord extensions seem a little awkward.
  21. It's simple, but generally effective. It's clear to listeners how the initial idea gets expanded upon which is really interesting because normally that stuff goes over a lay person's head. What you should watch out for is the "verticalization" of the horizontal lines you create. The listener, now expecting a certain phrase structure, will hear certain lines that fall into a chord as diatonically involved, when oftentimes this isn't what's intended. This happens, for instance, between mm. 9-10.
  22. You and Schoenberg would have gotten along; the use of 12's here with your process piece is evident. However, while the upper interval structures seem to remain intact, the horizontal interval structures seem to be more diatonic which takes away from the otherwise interesting soundworld you've created.
  23. The use of Dorian is pretty nice and ancient-sounding; a lot of Bach's early stuff is actually edited from the Dorian mode because back then people weren't sure if Aeolian or Dorian would catch on as the contrast to Ionian. That said, if there's one thing to say, I'd suggest a reexamination of the stratified chords you have. In this case, places like the A7 in the 2/4 and some places where the F#m7 is lead away by close harmonic motion. It can sound a little surprising and hinders the arc the piece otherwise has. Nice job.
  24. I'd fix some of your levels. When the cello comes in it's extremely loud in comparison, especially with the effect in the background. I like the use of suspended chord changes, but it becomes a bit predictable when the arrival chord's extensions are so diatonic. There's a lot of potential with the pattern you've established, just be a bit more experimental.
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