Jump to content

string quartet counterpoint practice short piece

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

Hello everyone!

I have composed a short piece based on the second movement of the 'Emperor' quartet from Haydn for practicing counterpoint. A simple melody is repeated four times over the four instruments an counterpointed against. The counterpoint textures are also strongly based on the same Haydn piece. Any advice and review is more than welcome!

Thank you!


noteperformer audio: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1x2sPTx0Qtx7a5Od3CgPa9rlg6E2IQfNq/view?usp=sharing

musescore version: https://musescore.com/user/30851752/scores/6167722

music sheet PDF: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1x2sPTx0Qtx7a5Od3CgPa9rlg6E2IQfNq/view?usp=sharing

DAW (reaper) version (different uncorrected old version): https://drive.google.com/file/d/1_rTZHNry8Co2N-6fYlf1ldjbxmALeuDZ/view?usp=sharing


Edited by JorgeDavid
Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice. That's an interesting realization on one of the most beautiful quartets.

But I would change some of the voices, there are some parallel 5ths and octaves and uncompleted harmonies I would review. Second half of bar 2 you have parallel 5th Violin I and II and the C chord have no 3rd. I would change the Violin II E instead of C, then both problems are solved. Also second half of bar 3 parallel 8ths Violin I-Viola and paralel octaves Violin II-Cello. Also duplicating the 3th on first inversion chords (beginning of bar 2 and 3) I don't feel it's the best option, I would try to duplicate the root  or the 5th as first choice and the 3rd as an alternative, or when the lines with the 3rd move in contrary motion, which is not the case. 


  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you so much for your feedback! It is even ridiculous that I can make so many mistakes in only the first few bars in spite of trying to avoid them. Voice leading for 4 voices seems so hard and tough :S. I try to go over the whole piece again trying to solve the voice leading but I keep having the feeling when I solve between some voices I am distrying it in some other voice lol. I guess it is all about practicing.

Regarding doubling in first inversion chords, I read in "Harmony" by Walter Piston (and I think that is the standard) that the third should only be doubled when needed and always in a voice as near the bass as possible. However, in "Harmonic practice in tonal music" by Gauldin (book that, so far I find more enjoyable than the one of Piston) it is adviced to double the soprano voice (even if the soprano is the third, which would mean to double the third with the same voice in bass and soprano, which seems to be something that tends to be a little frowned upon). Do you know if Gauldin is following some other kind of common practice or that book is the only one that states that "rule"?

Thank you so much for the advices! 🙂

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...