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The Victory of Death


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This is a piece that I wrote about... well, death. I've been working on it since mid-October, but it's still kind of a work in progress. The score is in concert pitch (c-score) because I forgot to change that before exporting the video. If y'all could give me your feedback that'd be great! I really like the way this one is headed and I want it to be good when complete. The main issue with it is the ending, so that's really want I want feedback on primarily.

Instrumentation (top to bottom):

Flute 1

Flute 2

Oboe 1

Oboe 2

Bb Clarinet 1

Bb Clarinet 2

2 Horns in F

Bb Trumpet 1

Bb Trumpet 2

Trombone 1

Trombone 2

Tuba

Timpani

Cymbal

Violin 1

Violin 2

Viola

Cello

Bass

 

Thanks for your time, and feedback!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SB59_vLIElU

 

Edited by mercurypickles
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The oboe solo at 3:45 is really long and it's not obvious where the performer should take a breath because the melody is like a run-on sentence without clear structural delineations.  Overall though you have some good ideas and the orchestration/instrumentation is quite idiomatic for the respective instruments.  You do a good job of creating an atmosphere of desolation and deep melancholy.  The open fifth tremolo in the violins is also quite dramatic and sets the stage for the mood you chose to create.  Also, because the piece is in 3/4 it can't really function as a march per se.  Marches are in 4/4 or 2/2 time and are usually a bit more martial and at walking tempo.  Your piece is much too slow to march to even if you split the bar in two.  And it's too fast if you were to take a step on each 8th note.  The only thing in this piece that reminds the listener that it should be a march is the timpani - it works well to create a dramatic and repetitive/hypnotic aura though - I'm not saying you should remove it.  Another thing is that the piece stays the same mood throughout and there's very little contrast - the piece is just one long section almost.  But I guess that was your goal when you set out to compose a piece about death - it can just get a little tiresome sometimes.  It could stand to be shortened or made more concise somehow if you ever re-work and feel like making it more interesting (of course you don't have to).  Anyways - thanks for sharing!  Overall I think you succeeded at writing a piece about death if not exactly a march!

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Thank you for your comment! With regard to the oboe solo, I had imagined it as a whole section playing, that way people could stagger their breathing and still be able to get the complete phrase out. About the march bit.. you're right, the title itself is also a work in progress and I just kinda slapped it on there after the music was written. I knew the piece was about death, but I didn't know what exactly to name it so this was the best I could come up with. The piece itself could be made more exciting but my outlook was that death.. often isn't very exciting. It's a phase change, in a lot of ways humans are dying the moment they're born. For all I know, this piece may take a place in a larger work in the future, I could see that, but for now I'm pretty happy with this!

By the way, did you have any thoughts about the ending of the piece?

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