Composers' Forum

Music Composers Unite!

OK this is supposed to be in phrygian mode. Did I do this right?

It is for flute, English horn, bassoon, French horn and tuba. What do you think of my choice for the ensemble?

It is a lighthearted dance-able (hopefully) waltz. I was also working on modulation which I think I have done smoothly.

It is more complete than some of my other  pieces but it definitely needs more work. It's a bit messy in places and as is often the case the base lines could do with some work.

Views: 113

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Hi Stanley,

A bit of a whirligig here I think. It's quite fun and a good start to a piece for your project next year. My view is that the instrumentation is out of balance and the tuba isn't needed when you already have a bassoon. You will be aware that the 'normal' instrumentation for a wind quintet is Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Horn and Bassoon and I think this grouping would better enable you to balance the piece.....but of course if you want this particular arrangement there's nothing to stop you.

The horn is too far up in the stratosphere in bars 108-110 for a simple offbeat accompaniment - it would be happier down an 8ve.

Other than that, I look forward to hearing it when you finish it off in 2020.

Thanks Stephen once again you give useful comments. Thanks for taking the time to review my pieces.


Stephen Lines said:

Hi Stanley,

A bit of a whirligig here I think. It's quite fun and a good start to a piece for your project next year. My view is that the instrumentation is out of balance and the tuba isn't needed when you already have a bassoon. You will be aware that the 'normal' instrumentation for a wind quintet is Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Horn and Bassoon and I think this grouping would better enable you to balance the piece.....but of course if you want this particular arrangement there's nothing to stop you.

The horn is too far up in the stratosphere in bars 108-110 for a simple offbeat accompaniment - it would be happier down an 8ve.

Other than that, I look forward to hearing it when you finish it off in 2020.

Interesting, I just feel like someone is telling me a happy story and I am listening attentively, rich melody build up between 0:59 - 1:16 and also 1:50 - 2:05 where you used more than one instrument to stress out the melody)  well done.

All the best,

Islam

Thanks Islam I hope you can imagine people dancing at a ball to this :)

Islam Y.Omari said:

Interesting, I just feel like someone is telling me a happy story and I am listening attentively, rich melody build up between 0:59 - 1:16 and also 1:50 - 2:05 where you used more than one instrument to stress out the melody)  well done.

All the best,

Islam

Hi Stanley, nice and uplifting piece. Although short, I like the melody lines painted with amazing colours by the special set of instruments you have used and master skillfully. Although it is good as it is, if you look for suggestions to develop, I would try to implement some counterpoint, e.g. sort of parallel melody lines or "call and answer", to increase the richness. But as it is, I enjoyed the listening.

Cheers,

Kjell

I am glad you enjoyed it Kjell. Thank you for your insight with regard to counterpoint. When I next work on this piece I will definitely consider that. I was concentrating on trying to create it in Phrygian mode and also on modulation. I also need to develop variations of the main melody so I don't just keep repeating it. I think this is one of my limiting factors with the length of the pieces I compose.

Kjell Prytz said:

Hi Stanley, nice and uplifting piece. Although short, I like the melody lines painted with amazing colours by the special set of instruments you have used and master skillfully. Although it is good as it is, if you look for suggestions to develop, I would try to implement some counterpoint, e.g. sort of parallel melody lines or "call and answer", to increase the richness. But as it is, I enjoyed the listening.

Cheers,

Kjell

This is a fun piece Stanley and well written from my point of view.  In my opinion the only theory that matters is what you are hearing yourself. I think Stephen has made a good point about the tuba but the booming is OK for me because of all the heavier sounds that we have grown used to these days. Good work!

I removed the horn from the stratosphere in bars 108-110 and a few other places :)

Stephen Lines said:

Hi Stanley,

The horn is too far up in the stratosphere in bars 108-110 for a simple offbeat accompaniment - it would be happier down an 8ve.

I am glad you enjoyed it Ingo. I wanted the Tuba to carry the base so I could use the bassoon in its middle and higher ranges. I tried to make sure there was at least an octave between the Bassoon and the Tuba. I chose the English Horn because it has a wider range than the Oboe. The French Horn I deliberately kept in treble clef and shot into the stratosphere some times, which I have now corrected.

Ingo Lee said:

This is a fun piece Stanley and well written from my point of view.  In my opinion the only theory that matters is what you are hearing yourself. I think Stephen has made a good point about the tuba but the booming is OK for me because of all the heavier sounds that we have grown used to these days. Good work!

A great little piece. Happy, easy going. I think it's fun to write for unusual combinations of instruments and this works well in that in performance a group would get any balance issues sorted out. You've described how and why you scored it as it is and the combination works for me - two double-reed instruments, the flute able to carry its part in the register it's playing, and some controllable brass that doesn't drown the others out. The bassoon can be pretty lyrical in its middle to upper register.

However, did you mean it to be written in the Phrygian mode? Because it isn't really. That mode comes with problems in that there's no perfect cadence and your cadences are resoundingly dominant to tonic....which doesn't detract from this excellently uplifting work. 

Great. Easy to listen to.

I'm glad you enjoyed it Dane. Thanks for pointing out the lack of phrygian-ness. If you know of any good resource that demonstrates the modes well I would appreciate it. The other thing I battle with is developing a piece longer than 2 minutes or so without it getting boring through repetition. If you have any pointers on this, I would appreciate it.

Dane Aubrun said:

A great little piece. Happy, easy going. I think it's fun to write for unusual combinations of instruments and this works well in that in performance a group would get any balance issues sorted out. You've described how and why you scored it as it is and the combination works for me - two double-reed instruments, the flute able to carry its part in the register it's playing, and some controllable brass that doesn't drown the others out. The bassoon can be pretty lyrical in its middle to upper register.

However, did you mean it to be written in the Phrygian mode? Because it isn't really. That mode comes with problems in that there's no perfect cadence and your cadences are resoundingly dominant to tonic....which doesn't detract from this excellently uplifting work. 

Great. Easy to listen to.

The impression I get from having the tuba in such a low range most of the time is that the low end is too heavy. The other instruments are comparatively light in character. Perhaps don't worry too much about separating the bassoon and tuba so much as long as they are playing contrasting parts.

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Sign up info

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

Store

© 2019   Created by Gav Brown.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service