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Everything posted by celloman99

  1. @jawoodruff Given that I worked on the piece with my teacher (a graduate assistant) for the past few months, he didn’t have a lot to say about the finished product. His comments mainly were directed towards the individual sections as I was writing them. That being said, he didn’t mention the sort of odd nature of having two introductions, as you pointed out. I do agree that it seems a little weird because of that. However, I like the feeling of the “Let there be light moment” followed by the absolute stillness of introduction 2. In the jury itself, the faculty didn’t comment on this piece, other than to ask some basic questions about why/how I wrote it.
  2. In addition to what the others said, I wanted to say that I love how detailed your notation is! All the articulations and everything seem really intentional. Nice sketch!
  3. Cool piece! I wasn't expecting the cello solo! If you had shown me this piece and asked me to guess the title, I don't know if Cloudy Dreams would have come to mind, but I think it definitely fits. I also enjoyed the sound effects throughout. Thanks for sharing!
  4. First of all, sweet looking score! Lol I enjoyed hearing the piece. It's not the style I am used to composing in or listening to, but I did think it sounded really interesting. I thought the fact that much of the piece was spent with just small groups of instruments playing together was really great. Self-restraint in orchestration is hard to manage. When you have a big score, it's tempting to want to fill it up all the time. Nice work!
  5. I definitely got Christmas vibes from this! I could picture this going nicely in a film. I think that sometimes when you have the violins doubling the piano melody, it seems a bit redundant to me. But that's mainly my own preference. Nice job!
  6. I think you've created a very lovely piece of music here. I don't have the knowledge at this point to make any intelligent critiques about the style, but I can assure you that I enjoyed the composition and hope you will consider uploading a score for it sometime so we can see how it looks notated out. Nice work!
  7. First of all, thanks for sharing, and I'm sorry no one has reviewed your piece yet! It's very beautiful. I really enjoyed the part starting at M. 46. Overall, I thought this was a lovely setting of the text to music, and I'd imagine a choir would love to sing it. Nice work!
  8. It sounds nice! I would consider using pizzicato in your strings at some point; it would work well with the "1, 2, 3" accompaniment. Other than that, I think you're off to a good start here!
  9. As others have noted, your piano writing is extraordinary! For me, composing for piano is a real challenge, but your composition sounds like it just flowed straight from the fingertips of a the best pianist out there- amazing! You also seem to handle writing for orchestra quite nicely. This is definitely one of the finer works I've seen on here, and I hope it gets all the recognition it deserves. Great job!
  10. It seems to me you have two basic options: 1) Create a quick-paced melody that's very bouncy and dance-like. 2) Create a bigger, more grand melody that stretches over entire measures and rests on top of the quicker 6/8 texture. Either way, it's up to you; perhaps you'll find something completely different to do. It all depends on what the piece is for and what your general idea is for it. Good luck on the rest of it!
  11. celloman99


    Thanks for sharing! I thought this was a cool piece with some really interesting and effective choices in instrumentation. While the same chord progression repeated again and again, I was always pleasantly surprised by what combinations of instruments you decided to use at any given moment. Also, the structure of the piece was very nice. It had clearly defined sections that all were related but had their own personalities. Great work!
  12. I've gotta say that based on the strings, it sounds like 4/4 to me. OR it could be a really slow 3/4. Lol, good luck deciding!
  13. This music is not what I write personally, but I definitely think it sounds great! What software did you use to write it? I think the backdrop of the bass/beat combined with the lyrical string melody is really effective, and it didn't get old at all. I could have kept listening to it for awhile. I might suggest adding in some harmonies with more string instruments (like, another violin, viola, cello, and double bass all playing a rhythmic pattern with whatever chord you're using at the moment). I think this would go really well in a game or action movie. Excellent music!
  14. Cool piece! First of all, I really like that you put the harmonic analysis in the score. It's cool to follow along with that. So, I don't feel that I have any technical suggestions for you. A lot of it sounded rather sparse to me; I'm not sure how else to say that. There were lots of very "open" sounding sounds, and it got a little to persistent for my tastes. That being said, I also think it's clear you know what you're doing, and I think this would be really great to hear performed in a concert.
  15. I really like that you are composing this with a smaller orchestra in mind. I think being able to scale down and restrain from going all out is really a great show of self control. For me, the harmony didn't have enough variety. Now, that added to the sort of dooms-day sound, which is what you were going for, I'm sure. But I just felt like it could have gone to more interesting places. Also, just be aware that a lot of choirs don't have many basses who can really reach those low notes you've written. It doesn't mean you can't write them, but you should be aware that you're spending a lot of time way down at the bottom for them. Nice job!
  16. Hey there, thanks for posting! First off, thanks for making it in d-minor instead of c#-minor. I can guarantee you that string players much prefer it this way. Personally, I found some of the harmonic shifts (like in measures 11-12) to be a bit off-putting. That is a subjective opinion, though. What I can say with a bit more certainty is that something you can strive for is to make sure that each player's part is interesting for them to play. As a cellist myself, I can tell you that few things are more annoying or bothersome to play than a part that doesn't seem to go anywhere or do anything. Without a real sense of direction and fulfillment, I think you run the risk of having a piece that is unpleasant to play. That's not to say that some pieces can't be hard for the players, but the point I'm making is that you want to make sure you're considering what it will be like for the musicians to play through this piece and whether or not it would be a good experience for them. I think you're doing a fine job here, and perhaps someone with more knowledge than I have of discussing harmony will be able to leave a review in regards to more specific suggestions or comments. In the meantime, keep up the good work!
  17. Greetings! I enjoyed getting to listen to your composition; thanks for posting. First of all, I want to say that I think it's clear that you are very passionate about the music you write. There's a great sense of a confidence expressed in this work. I would recommend two primary things: - Get familiar with one of the big books on orchestration (my favorite at the moment is Orchestration by Rimsky-Korsakov, but there are varying opinions on which one is "best"). While there's nothing wrong, per se, with your ideas, they could be expressed with better technique (from an orchestration perspective). - Secondly, study as many piano concertos as you can. Look at ones that are similar to this genre as well as ones that are different. I'd suggest you pay particular attention to the way different composers use their own harmonic language and then decide if there is anything that you would perhaps like to add to your own. Also, make a point to observe how composers have had the piano and orchestra interact with each other in the past. I think this is a fine start on your piece, and I admire you for putting it up here for review while it is still a work in progress. I hope these suggestions are of some help, and good luck on the piece!
  18. Hey my friend, One thing to consider is marking slurs on the cello part. I don't know if you are aware that generally, string players use slur markings to know how many notes to play with one bow. This can affect everything from volume to tone color, so for places like measure 9, think about a cellist playing that and whether or not you want them doing all four notes in one bow or doing maybe two to a bow for better sound. If you have thought of this and have marked accordingly, it's fine. I wanted to let you know just in case though. I was writing the above comment when the "He-Ya!" started; that scared me! Lol Very cool though. Also, the 5/8 bars are cool. Overall, I think this piece is really interesting and would be great fun to hear live. It's very imaginative, and I was looking forward to what came next the entire time. Great job!
  19. I definitely was able to feel the mood of the piece right away, and it made perfect sense with the poem. It's a large instrumentation. I think you handled it well. You didn't just have the entire band blasting away all the time, and the moments with just a few parts going were really nice. If I had a critique (and this is just a personal preference thing), I thought it could use maybe one other main idea. I felt like the mood stayed the same throughout. If that's what you want, it's great. And like I say, I think it really captures the feeling of the poem. I just would like some other "vibe" to compliment and contrast the primary one. Other than that ambiguous comment, I don't have anything else to say other than that it sounds nice and the score looks well done. I always enjoy a clean looking score. Good job!
  20. Hey everyone, Here is the piece I composed this semester for my composition lessons at university. It's about 18 minutes long, so if you only want to listen to and review a small portion, that's totally fine. This piece is still under revisions, so any feedback is welcome. Thanks! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C2Z780ZKZIY
  21. Cool piece! I enjoyed hearing it. One suggestion might be to try switching up the time signature a bit more than you do. Throwing in an extra beat here or there or taking one out could add to the sort of playful, tip-toe nature of the piece. Nice work!
  22. It is always special to have a composition connect with an audience (/congregation) like that. You wrote a beautiful work which you should be proud of. Congratulations on this performance.
  23. Hi all, First of all, I have really enjoyed reading over what everyone had to say about this topic. This is how it works for me right now: To some extent, I know that everything I do is going to heavily rely on the music I've listened to and studied in the past, so in some ways, it seems like it would be better to just give up and stop trying to write music. The problem there is that people have enjoyed playing and listening to the music I've written in the past. Not only that, but I can also see a certain upwards trajectory in regards to some ambiguous creative quality in my music over the years I've been writing. To examine that quality element a bit, I would say it is nothing more than my learning gradually how to compose music to more effectively convey my artistic visions. I view this as the "craft" side of composing. On the other hand, people have always come up to me and said they really enjoyed my music, even at the very beginning of my compositional efforts. So, it seems there's some element to composing aside from "craft" which is also essential to "good" new music. That being said, I have noticed that acquiring more compositional skills/techniques/experiences has equipped me to be able to share an artistic vision with much more subtle nuances than before, thus making for more intellectually enjoyable pieces for me to compose, for the players to perform, and the audience to listen to. The only way which I have found to develop these skills is by pushing the boundaries of what I am currently comfortable composing. Now, what I am more concerned with other than originality is triteness, and perhaps this is what is truly meant by this discussion of originality. My feeling is that I can compose something which uses non-original elements in a non-trite way. The main thing that I know is that my own artistic visions are best portrayed through music, and the more musical tools that are in my composer toolbox, the more detail and nuance I can add to that vision. Anyways, perhaps that was too confusing, so here's the TLDR: What matters most is that the composer's artistic vision be original, heartfelt. The more tools available to the composer to craft that vision into reality, the better. The best way to get new tools is to push the boundaries of what music you're comfortable composing and listening to. Let me know what you think!
  24. Hey gang, I posted this piece earlier when I was in the middle of writing it. Here is the finished product. This is the piece I composed over the spring semester during my first semester of composition lessons at the university I am attending. Please enjoy and let me know what you think! (P.S. Evidently when you use Petrucci font in Finale, the tremolo stops working, so that's why it appears in the score, but is not in the MP3 [do the midi problems ever end...?])
  25. J. Lee Graham, 1. Very pretty first movement - there was a lot of pleasant moments which I think would make the listener enjoy the piece a lot and stay focused as they wait for those moments to be repeated. 2. Your writing here is quite nice, and easy on the ears. Something you might consider is to expand what's going on past a sort of "everyone doing everything together at the same time" mentality. I'm not saying that's how it was the complete time; for instance, at M. 37- you have the first viola doing a nice suspended rhythm thing over the bar lines. I think this movement could benefit from more such polyrhythmic writing. There certainly is nothing wrong with what you have, I just think it could be a bit more rhythmically developed. 3. You establish a very nice sound straight from the beginning, and I can't imagine anyone not being completely charmed by this movement in a performance. Some of your harmonies are really pretty, and you put a lot of work into the articulation. The trio section provides a nice legato contrast. This is overall a very nice, tight movement. I may be wrong, but I feel like it has the most clearly defined structure. 4. Right off the bat, I am concerned about the runs at places like 34 and 37. I am a cellist and just looking at that, at the tempo the recording is at, is giving me a little bit of a heart attack! I am not the world's greatest cellist though, so perhaps who you are planning on this being performed by will be able to do it. I would just be aware that it is a little bit complicated to play those types of runs so fast on stringed instruments. It can be done, it just increases the difficulty of the piece by quite a bit. As far as the movement goes, there seems to be a lot more going on harmonically here than in the other three...? I'm not really sure, but that's just what my ear is picking up. It's not necessarily a bad thing, just something to consider. Also, just to be clear, figures like at 348 with the repeated 16th notes are very playable, it's the longer runs as I listed before that cause my concern. Summary: I think what you've got here is a very enjoyable, very pleasant piece which would be a lot of fun to hear live. I think that even though you are composing in a very classical style, you could experiment a bit more with rhythm/harmony, however there were some nice moments where you did that, so I am inclined to think that you are very capable of it but perhaps decided not to for this particular piece. In any case, I enjoyed listening to it and hope you get some people to play it sometime!
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