Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Tired and bitter

I left my lesson today angry. Mostly because I finally feel like I am getting something, and then find out I am not. my teacher today told me that I didn’t have enough ideas for the piece I posted last. Which is fine but irritating when you think you have got something figured out. That is all.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

A New Semester

I am required to write a multi-movement chamber piece this semester, I initially started with a sketch of three different ideas that were completely unrelated. I showed up to my first lesson with this sketch and told my teacher about it. She didn’t even listen to it...

She challenged me in my new sketch to do three different things,

  1. Come up with an idea and only elaborate on that idea
  • As I shared earlier I had three ideas already

  • she said that working with too many ideas hinders me because I get stuck into making too many decisions

  1. Reduce my sketch ideas to a short score
  • Make all the voices appear on either one or 2 grand Staves

  • She said this would reduce my challenge of decision making to just music

  • Instead of worrying about which pitch the violin should take I would just be thinking about which pitch should be played at all

  1. Think of my piece as a whole, since it is a multi-movement chamber orchestra piece

  • meaning to consider the overall architecture of the piece

  • if you have a fast movement, have a slow one,

  • if you have a movement that really drives, consider having one that paints.

  • Not only do these concepts give variety to the piece, they really allow each section their own property.

My Teacher was very impressed with I how I well I stuck to her criteria, and to be completely honest, so was I. One of my biggest struggles as a composer is to stick with one idea, and elaborate on it. Mostly I just come up with lots of ideas and try to make them all fit together. Which is what I have decided the difference between a songwriter, and a composer is.

The last section that changes to 4/4 is hardly the idea I want to change to, it is just something I put on the end to give me an idea of what I want for the B section of this song.

Since the opening is so strange rhythmically, I decided that perhaps something blocky, and dully predictable would be a good start for where I should go in the B section. I have already changed the idea significantly, but wanted to show my process.

Leanna (my teacher) told me that the unrelenting A5 is debilitating to the piece, especially because the rhythmic value is the same for most of that section.

After saying that she played the section without the A, both of us agreed that it was dull and drab without it; for whatever reason the A is a really driving force.

So we decided that I should just change the rhythmic values to give some type of variation and a less predictable texture.

Anyway, I don’t know if anyone is even reading this, but I think it is good for me to process and document what I am thinking about. Maybe when I am dead people will care.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Choral Music

I have a new teacher this semester. She is great. This is a choral piece I just started this week. I probably shouldn’t show it to anyone but I am excited about it.