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  1. Good evening everyone! I'm ready to present a new piece I have been working on for the last couple of months or so: Adagio for Orchestra. It’s a relatively short piece, not as large in scope as some of my other works I have posted here. Admittedly I’ve had a little bit of writer’s block recently, so I toned things back quite a bit and instead focused on simple themes and experimenting with an expanded orchestra, including Euphonium and Saxophone with the usual instruments. I'm interested in any and all constructive feedback. I had a few goals in mind as I composed this, feel free to chime in on how well I accomplished them: Focus on simple, memorable themes. Experiment with orchestration, using auxiliary instruments to create some unique textures. Integrate Euphonium and Saxophone with the rest of the orchestra. Write something that would work as a middle movement of a larger work, such as a symphony. The piece is loosely structured in a binary form with repeat (ABAB). (0:00 - 1:09) – Introduction. Euphonium solo that is passed between and elaborated by other members of the winds, punctuated by sweeping string lines. Most of the thematic material from the piece is extracted from this opening solo. (1:09 – 2:41) – A Theme. A melancholy dirge carried by a bell-like ostinato played by harp, celesta, and piano, with rustling tremolo in the strings and an eerie chant in the winds. (2:41 – 5:00) – B Theme. A floating theme first presented by the oboe then embellished by the strings to the first big outburst of the piece. Material from the A Theme is elaborated here, then the strings carry the oboe theme to a new momentary high, before settling back into the recap. (5:00 – 7:11) – A Theme recap. The dirge returns, this time building to a euphoric climax, then drifting away into the upper register of the woodwinds and strings. (7:11 – 8:13) – B Theme recap. This time the clarinet sings the theme. I experimented with some polytonality/polymodality/whatever-you-want-to-call-it with the chords in the horns, trumpets, flutes, keyboards, and harp. I’m curious how well I pulled this off. (8:13 – 8:38) – Coda. Return of the Euphonium solo, this time drifting off into silence to end the piece. As usual, I have few specific questions I would like specific feedback on. Feel free to answer as many or as few as you wish: What effect does the music have on you? Does in conjure up an image? Or an emotional feeling? Does it tell you a story? This can be the piece as a whole, or a specific part or parts. What was your favorite part? What was your least favorite part? Do you have any comments or critiques on technique, e.g. harmony, melody writing, counterpoint, orchestration, voice-leading, etc.? How do you feel about the overall form? Is it effective? How well do you think the euphonium and saxophone are integrated with the rest of the orchestra? How do you feel about the harmony in the B theme recap (the nondiatonic chords against the melody in the clarinet)? Is it effective? Do you have any comments of the quality of the performance in the audio file? I really want this to be a decent representation of how the piece would sound if it were performed live, since it is unlikely it ever will be. Feel free to put your "conductor hat" on and critique the "orchestra". I have included a score and welcome any constructive feedback on its presentation. And if you're like me it's a lot more fun to follow along with the score. Are there any composers this reminds you of, that I might enjoy listening to? Sound libraries: Spitfire Symphonic Orchestra and Spitfire Percussion VSL – Eb clarinet, Bass clarinet (in the intro only), Alto sax, Bassoon (for the solo only), Bb Trumpet (for the solos only, and some reinforcement in louder sections), Euphonium, Piano Thanks for listening, I hope you enjoy! If you liked something I did and want me to explain how I did it, feel free to ask as well. -gmm
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