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Orchestration: PART 1 (woodwinds) discussion

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Ok, here are mine.:) (sorry that they aren't in the right order, I had to re-upload one...)

I'm not too sure about the basson in the first one...

In the second I re-orchestrated a melody from another piece of mine. In that piece it uses tuba and very low bassoons so it is very plodding and heavy. In this I tryed to make it a bit light but still kind of keep a little of the 'plod' if you know what I mean:P. Hence the high bassoon.

The third one I had most problems with, is it ok?

Thanks for giving up your time to do this, I really appreciate this.:huh:

QC Lesson Ex 2.MUS

QC Lesson Ex 3.MUS

QC Lesson Ex1.MUS

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Guest QcCowboy
Ok, here are mine.:) (sorry that they aren't in the right order, I had to re-upload one...)

I'm not too sure about the basson in the first one...

In the second I re-orchestrated a melody from another piece of mine. In that piece it uses tuba and very low bassoons so it is very plodding and heavy. In this I tryed to make it a bit light but still kind of keep a little of the 'plod' if you know what I mean:P. Hence the high bassoon.

The third one I had most problems with, is it ok?

Thanks for giving up your time to do this, I really appreciate this.:huh:

ok, in exercise 1, be careful, your Oboe is too low in the low register.

exercise 2 , very good. flute and bassoon is a mixture I particularly like in my own music. hehehe

exercise 3, that's a very pretty chord. I think to reinforce the bass I might have placed the bass clarinet on an A an octave lower (sounding G in bass clef, between the two bassoons)

the flute sound comes out very clearly in the texture.

If you want to try again for something different, try to think of how you would re-orchestrate that same chord to blend the instruments more fully.

take into consideration the added elements of stacking, enclosing, enbricking and overlapping we have now added to our vocabulary in the latest lesson.

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I know you guys have been thanking me for my time, but you know what?

I think the greatest thanks I could possibly get is seeing how you are assimilating the material and it makes me feel like a million dollars.

I want to thank YOU.

:huh:

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I know you guys have been thanking me for my time, but you know what?

I think the greatest thanks I could possibly get is seeing how you are assimilating the material and it makes me feel like a million dollars.

I want to thank YOU.

:)

Contributing to the positive vibe.:o

I think I have found something we should all try our hand at.

It is a competition for a woodwind quintet and we were all just given a lesson on the use of them so.........

Just a hint. :D

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Thanks for doing this qc, fantastic to have someone to give us all feedback on our attempts at orchestration

Here are mine, am looking forward to the next lesson:

7338.attach_thumb.jpg

7340.attach_thumb.jpg

7341.attach_thumb.jpg

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Hey 920bpm - just a bit about the oboe. If you want a REALLY weak register, move up your oboe part in exercise 1 so it starts on an A or B. THen you will be in the shrieking/difficult register of the oboe. Right now it's easily manageable - you wouldn't believe how much harder it is to get out a high G than a high F. :)

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and thank-you Oboe for that information.

I'm glad that this is turning out to be a REAL masterclass...

Please, make comments, ask questions, not just of me.

Act as though this were a class at university.

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Hey 920bpm - just a bit about the oboe. If you want a REALLY weak register, move up your oboe part in exercise 1 so it starts on an A or B. THen you will be in the shrieking/difficult register of the oboe. Right now it's easily manageable - you wouldn't believe how much harder it is to get out a high G than a high F. :)

But wouldn't that push that high F out of the range of the oboe?

Also, qc or anyone who knows a bit about this already, would my ex. 2 & 3 "work"? Would I get the effects I described?

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Also, qc or anyone who knows a bit about this already, would my ex. 2 & 3 "work"? Would I get the effects I described?

the "shrill" effect would definately, be there, although the bassoon would not have quite as much carrying power as the bassoon.

ideally, you would have to double with still more instruments to really get a "shrill" effect.

at some point further along we'll start to consider multiple instruments in unison/octave dispositions.

To really get nice rich/loud sounds, it becomes important to layer the instruments more than 2 x 2.

Of course, I'm speaking from an orchestral point of view here. Chamber music is a completely different animal.

For "fullness" of sound, a very important factor is to consider the harmony as a unit.

If you have a 3-note chord and end up doubling only one note of that chord over and over, then you are going to be weakening part of it.

There are many ways to score a single chord, but one of the most effective, and "richest" is to keep the disposition almost exactly as it would be in the overtone series.

In other words if we had a C major chord, starting from teh bottom up you would double at the octave the fundamental "C", then put in a G, then another C, then more densely pack the notes as the register got higher. Until in the highest register you would have literally all the notes of the chord stacked one on top of each other.

This, for example, would be my favourite way of orchestrating a C major chord for woodwinds (with horns). It's not the ONLY way, just one that gives a particular orchestral colour of which I am particularly fond:

c_major.jpg

Notice which instruments are in octaves, and which are in closer positions.

Here is a recording of that chord:

C Major woodwind chord recording

Again, take into consideration that this is being performed by a sample library, and I also did this very quickly as an example.

Another way to orchestrate the same chord could have had more overlap in the upper register to accentuate the "C" tonic of the chord.

The same principle remains in effect, however, where you space notes further apart in the lower register and closer together in the upper register.

Generally, around and above middle C it is unusual to have octave gaps in the texture.

While two octaves down from middle C it is almost a prerequisite.

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Notice which instruments are in octaves, and which are in closer positions.

Is that anything to do with this?

4. Concords (octaves, thirds and sixths) and not discords (fifths, fourths, seconds and sevenths), should be given to instruments of the same kind or colour, except when discords are to be emphasised. This rule should be specially observed in writing for the oboe with its penetrating quality of tone:

I'm about up to the woodwind harmony chapter in that orchestration course as well, but I really didnt get that bit, it sounds really really strict. Can anyone make sense of it?

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are your refering to the Rimsky online orchestration course?

If so, well, yes it IS a bit strict, but remember that his goal was homogeneity and a very particular tonal colour.

Yes, it is related.

I tend to accentuate the clarinet sound in octaves, as well as place my horns, when there's only two of them, in octaves.

Don't think of it as "strict" think of it as a sort of guidelines from which to expand.

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Whats the next best thing to a Finale file qc? I only have Sibelius. :P

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oop. I DID specify in the sign-up thread that I will only work with Finale files for this course.

you COULD use MIDI file, but I don't like that none of the fine-tuning of notation is included.

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Here's my excercise.

But wouldn't that push that high F out of the range of the oboe?

No. The oboe can get up to the high C, but nobody with any sense ever writes that high. That's probably why QC didn't mention it.

Excercise in Orchestration.MUS

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Here's my excercise.

can I ask you to add one detail?

I'd like to know if there are unisons or solos of the woodwinds you use.

Don't forget that we have 2 of each to deal with.

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oops *blushes*

The beginning with bassoon and flute is 1 player per part. When the bassoon drops out, it's a unison for all but the flute, which is a solo. Measure 9 to the end is a unison for all parts.

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Here's my excercise.

let me comment on your orchestration (sorry for the delay)

I think the first five measures would not quite give the effect you're hoping for. The bassoon is a BIT high for that. To make it mellow, you would have more success with clarinets and flutes. Remember that the clarinet tone is mellow, and the flute is clear. Both oboe and bassoon have relatively pungent, nasal, tonal qualities.

Now, the next section (with the crescendo) I think would work best if you created octaves for the different instruments instead of the unison doublings you have. And while we have a crescendo it's not time to cut out instruments (what? no bassoon?).

I see a problem with the eighth measure... the clarinets sudden leap up an octave will heavily alter the tonal quality. You WILL sense that octave leap, even if it is in the middle of that large unison because it creates a sort of void in the lower register of woodwinds. now, if your bassoons were below that to sustain the lwoer part it might not be quite as noticable.

at measure 9, you have basically 6 instruments, two of each tone colour, playing in unison. The effect will be very "strong". It will probably not have quite the meditative or mellow tone you are looking for.

and for the very last iteration of the motif (measure 12) why not simply one flute and one clarinet? or one flut and one oboe... in unison?

this is something to look for when you are orchestrating: octaves of instruments bring out qualities that unisons cannot. particularly when you are comparing octaves or unisons of the SAME instrument.

I don't think your orchestration will sound "bad", but you may be dissappointed by the result... it will probably not give quite the effect you are hoping for.

still a very good try.

I'd like to see you try again but considering the use of octaves and blended timbres.

just for you (all others may NOT try this yet until their homework is handed in) I'd like you to pick notes out of the accompaniment now and create a parallel "harmony" voice for the woodwinds. no more "unison". If you can create a line of 3rds or 4ths, then do so. Don't try and compose a counterpoint. Think of this as a "harmonic" unison.

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as a note: please check regularly, as I am adding material to the course thread every few days. Sometimes it's additions within the thread, sometimes new posts at the end. Ths is all material you should become thoroughly familiar with over time.

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oop. I DID specify in the sign-up thread that I will only work with Finale files for this course.

you COULD use MIDI file, but I don't like that none of the fine-tuning of notation is included.

Hang on, what sign up thread??

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Hang on, what sign up thread??

aHA! you're not part of my group, are you! :P

well, technically, you needed to sign up at this thread:

http://www.youngcomposers.com/forum/sign-up-here-6908-27.html#post168595

if you read back a bit from that post, I specify that I will only work with Finale files since I do not use Sibelius, and the work will require the ability to put in dynamics and phrase markings which are not really do-able in a MIDI file.

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Exercise in attachment.

absolutely beautiful, djsell.

you could also have started the "a due" section one note early with SOME instruments... creating a sort of graduated crescendo.

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Thanks muchly! :toothygrin:

As for that suggestion, were you talking about specific instruments (I'm thinking that doing that with the Flutes would work best) or was that just a general suggestion?

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well, for example, if you have 4 instruments playing - let's say 2 flutes an oboe and a clarinet - you could add the second oboe then a beat later the second clarinet and a bassoon, then the second bassoon right on the climax. (I'm doing this off the cuff.. i don't have the score in front of me right now)

but the idea is that if you have a crescendo, you should "orchestrate it"... by adding instruments and "octaves" you create a new density.

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