Composers' Forum

Music Composers Unite!

Finished second movement for my symphony (Sierra's Return) would love some feedback

Hi, I just finished the second movement for the symphony I'm writing about a girl driven to insanity. It's about 5 minutes and 50 seconds long so if you took the time to listen and give me some feedback it would be very much appreciated. Thank you for reading and have a wonderful night! 

https://www.noteflight.com/scores/view/cdb989bc2ad76f55503e21053ac7...

Views: 99

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Hi Izzy,

I listened to your score a couple of times. This definitely sounds video-gamish to me, the arabic/or persian sounds seem like they might undergird an Aladdin-like adventure game. Not sure if that's what your aim is, but if so, here are a couple of thoughts I hope you will find useful in that direction, comments I hope will also be useful in case that is not your aim: 1) the tempo seems like it could benefit from an uptick, there were times, especially during the quieter moments where you only have one a few instruments going, where it felt to me almost dirge-like. Would suggest the overall piece be about 7%-12% faster; 2) The quieter moments in general I thought went on longer than was able to hold my interest, would suggest cutting these significantly (by 50%?); 3) you have quite a large array of instruments scored, but the sound overall is largely similar from beginning to end, not a lot of shifting of instrumental color from one array of instruments to another, as might be expected in such a large ensemble. This might perhaps be an indication that you have more instruments scored than are actually needed to produce the sound you are striving for, perhaps the score could be reduced down to fewer instruments?; 4) regarding the melody, I thought at times in the solo/smaller-set-of-instruments areas that I had a hard time following it, it seemed to move around in ways I couldn't appreciate, and therefore waned my interest, suggest a simpler and more direct approach. In the areas where the amount of instrumentation is greater, it felt to me as if the melody merged into the accompaniment and got somewhat lost, suggest bringing it out more. Overall, I think you have the makings of something interesting, no matter what genre you are shooting for, and I suspect that most of the issues I raise above will be easier to resolve by simply picking up the pace. Thanks for posting!

Best,

Gav

Thank you for your feedback, I understand totally what you're saying. The symphony is a story about a girl driven to insanity and the second movement (the first two thirds of it) is her crying out to the world. (This is gonna sound dark) the last part of the second movement is her deciding to kill herself and come back to hurt everyone who hurt her. It is very loosely based on a true story but I dramatized it a lot, clearly haha.
The only reason I don't want to speed up the beginning (where it seems the slowest) is because when I bring in all the other instruments, they benefit from being slow. Since the inner parts have quick notes, it seemed to me like it quickened the section. Also, in the beginning, it's meant to be very emotional so if it ends up being performed as I hope, it would sound much more alive and would capture the audience. The idea was that I would take a melody that would normally be considered ugly or random and make it into something much more.

I think this fits perfectly the theme you intended. I listened to the whole thing. I am impressed with this work. The only thing I found a little annoying was the percussion parts that sounds like ticks or pops. Not sure which part this was because the type is too small on my screen to read the instrument. 

I listened to the whole piece and enjoyed it. I agree with your take on the speed... the busier parts are fast enough. The "dirge" comment is relevant though... but I believe it's the intent of the mood you were after.

I do agree with Gav's comment about about there being more instruments than needed, at least in the first part where everything comes in at once. The melody does get lost and their are some active parts that I could see in the score but they were lost to my ears. Thin that section out and I believe it will pop!

The last section with the "call and response" is very effective and sets up nicely for the return of the opening theme. By the way..that opening theme is a well crafted melody.

Nice work

Don't worry, you're not alone haha. It's the high bongo, which Noteflight created WAY too high-pitched. I just left it though, because if it gets played, the bongo probably won't sound as horrendous.

Timothy Smith said:

I think this fits perfectly the theme you intended. I listened to the whole thing. I am impressed with this work. The only thing I found a little annoying was the percussion parts that sounds like ticks or pops. Not sure which part this was because the type is too small on my screen to read the instrument. 

Thank you for your feedback. I tend to like shock value in my music, that's why it was very quiet and then I had all the instruments come in at once. It's sort of like, there's a calm environment with a girl crying, and then all of a sudden she's yelling, full of pain, like she's been tortured (which she has, mentally).

Mark Ames said:

I listened to the whole piece and enjoyed it. I agree with your take on the speed... the busier parts are fast enough. The "dirge" comment is relevant though... but I believe it's the intent of the mood you were after.

I do agree with Gav's comment about about there being more instruments than needed, at least in the first part where everything comes in at once. The melody does get lost and their are some active parts that I could see in the score but they were lost to my ears. Thin that section out and I believe it will pop!

The last section with the "call and response" is very effective and sets up nicely for the return of the opening theme. By the way..that opening theme is a well crafted melody.

Nice work

The comment about picking up the pace was very useful though, so thank you. I tried upping it by just 2 beats a minute and it already sounded much better and wasn't so dragging in the beginning.

Gav Brown said:

Hi Izzy,

I listened to your score a couple of times. This definitely sounds video-gamish to me, the arabic/or persian sounds seem like they might undergird an Aladdin-like adventure game. Not sure if that's what your aim is, but if so, here are a couple of thoughts I hope you will find useful in that direction, comments I hope will also be useful in case that is not your aim: 1) the tempo seems like it could benefit from an uptick, there were times, especially during the quieter moments where you only have one a few instruments going, where it felt to me almost dirge-like. Would suggest the overall piece be about 7%-12% faster; 2) The quieter moments in general I thought went on longer than was able to hold my interest, would suggest cutting these significantly (by 50%?); 3) you have quite a large array of instruments scored, but the sound overall is largely similar from beginning to end, not a lot of shifting of instrumental color from one array of instruments to another, as might be expected in such a large ensemble. This might perhaps be an indication that you have more instruments scored than are actually needed to produce the sound you are striving for, perhaps the score could be reduced down to fewer instruments?; 4) regarding the melody, I thought at times in the solo/smaller-set-of-instruments areas that I had a hard time following it, it seemed to move around in ways I couldn't appreciate, and therefore waned my interest, suggest a simpler and more direct approach. In the areas where the amount of instrumentation is greater, it felt to me as if the melody merged into the accompaniment and got somewhat lost, suggest bringing it out more. Overall, I think you have the makings of something interesting, no matter what genre you are shooting for, and I suspect that most of the issues I raise above will be easier to resolve by simply picking up the pace. Thanks for posting!

Best,

Gav

Izzy,

Bongos are indeed supposed to be tuned very high. Sometimes about 2 octaves above middle C. Yes, the tutti section does seem very busy. I can't hear much of what I see on the page. It's one thing to say, "Well, if it get's played, they'll figure it out", and another to write clearly from the start. 

However, there is a lot of fun stuff in your piece. Thanks for posting it.

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Sign up info

Read before you sign up to find out what the requirements are!

Store

© 2021   Created by Gav Brown.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service