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This would have been part of my GCSE coursework (unsure of what equivalents elsewhere would be), but given the present situation, we aren't going to have it assessed as it normally would be, so I figured that it'd be alright for me to post it here.

I realise that in some places it isn't very tight formally, but it's better than previous compositions, and that's something I'm hoping to work on more in the future.

I get if people don't have time to listen to the whole thing, but feedback on any of it would be appreciated.

 

Edit - for some reason the audio and pdfs are in an odd order and I can't coerce them not to be.

Edited by Connor
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Maybe you control clicked them? I find that if I have multiple movements or scores in general and I want them to show in a certain order, I just click each individual movement, no ctrl click involved and it works for me.

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First off, this:

5 hours ago, Connor said:

This would have been part of my GCSE coursework

You wrote an entire symphony for your GCSE!? I've just finished my Nat 5s (Scottish equivalent) and the requirement for composition was nowhere near what you've done!

Next thing: wow! Great job overall. I'll pick out a couple of things that I've noticed.

1: Watch out for having your wind instruments in range extremes. Bar 5 on the 2nd oboe goes down to a low C which, even in the hands of the most capable performers sounds a bit honky. Incidentally, it would be good to have in the very last bar. Also, you're running a risk with the low C in the double basses at the start. The standard range is only down to an E. Unless you know that all of the bassists in an orchestra you were writing for had C extensions, it's safer not to write for it.

2. The orchestration does just feel a bit sparse overall. Experimenting a bit more with orchestral texture and looking at scores for orchestral pieces that you like can help you with this. I've noticed that there are a lot of rests - not necessarily a bad thing, but the texture feels too thin.

3. Are you aware that from Bar 219 onwards, there are full G chords in the winds, but every time there is also a Bb in the strings? Doesn't sound quite right in the context of the piece, but a tricky one to sort out.

Keep composing!

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15 hours ago, caters said:

Maybe you control clicked them? I find that if I have multiple movements or scores in general and I want them to show in a certain order, I just click each individual movement, no ctrl click involved and it works for me.

 

Thanks, I've edited the post and uploaded them individually, and it seems to have done the trick.

13 hours ago, aMusicComposer said:

First off, this:

You wrote an entire symphony for your GCSE!? I've just finished my Nat 5s (Scottish equivalent) and the requirement for composition was nowhere near what you've done

Yeah I think what I found was that it became something fun to work on as a break from revision and study for other subjects, so I just kept at it for far too long.

13 hours ago, aMusicComposer said:

Next thing: wow! Great job overall. I'll pick out a couple of things that I've noticed.

1: Watch out for having your wind instruments in range extremes. Bar 5 on the 2nd oboe goes down to a low C which, even in the hands of the most capable performers sounds a bit honky. Incidentally, it would be good to have in the very last bar. Also, you're running a risk with the low C in the double basses at the start. The standard range is only down to an E. Unless you know that all of the bassists in an orchestra you were writing for had C extensions, it's safer not to write for it.

2. The orchestration does just feel a bit sparse overall. Experimenting a bit more with orchestral texture and looking at scores for orchestral pieces that you like can help you with this. I've noticed that there are a lot of rests - not necessarily a bad thing, but the texture feels too thin.

3. Are you aware that from Bar 219 onwards, there are full G chords in the winds, but every time there is also a Bb in the strings? Doesn't sound quite right in the context of the piece, but a tricky one to sort out.

Keep composing!

Thanks!

1 & 2 make a lot of sense - retrospectively I can see those both being issues and I suppose just things that'll come with more practice and my looking out for them more/paying more attention. I did realise that the low C would need C extensions, but it sounds like I probably overestimated how common they were.

You're spot on with 3 - I don't know how I missed that, but the pattern in the strings should be C Bb Ab G B (natural), like in 211 in the bassoon and 'cello.

Thanks for the feedback and pointers, and for taking the time to listen!

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