Music Composers Unite!
I am new to this forum, so I thought I would go ahead and share my project from the 2016-2017 academic year. I have not yet had it performed, and the MIDI recording does have several inaccuracies, including one incorrect note close to the end of this movement due to its lack of wanting to play a high E on violin playbacks. Among the first of my completed works, this project was a study in form, counterpoint, harmonic function, and 19th century style:
Constructive criticism, thoughts, and comments are welcome! This work has been submitted to several competitions, and has been awarded multiply titles, including Honorable Mention in the 2017 TI:ME competition. I recently submitted it for further feedback to the NextNotes Highschool Composition Awards. I am working on pieces in a more contemporary style at the moment, though thoughts and feedback are always open to my consideration.
Just a few quick thoughts on a first listening (just ignore them if inappropriate)
The opening on the violin is very melodic and catchy (a bit more baroque to my ears rather than romantic, just my take)
the following contrapuntal section with piano and vln pizz is very effective and the techniques employed show enough acquittance with the instruments (especially the violin)
Third section is a skilful manipulation of the previous melodic material heard in the opening
4th section starting about 2'00'' to 2'48'' on the piano is poignant and builds up expectancy to the listener
Nice turn again to the major mode at 2'49'' with its acceleration. When the violin enters I find the rhythm inventive and exciting, it gave me a 8/8 feeling up to 3'25''
Nice working out of previously heard melodic material 3'25''-3'54''
Return to the opening theme at about 4'00'' quite properly placed (in a formal sense)
I do not have any serious (academic) criticism to offer (I'm not much interested in it if the music speaks to me, anyway), but is this an effort at classical sonata form? It is, to my mind, mixed with variation form(?), but then again variety in unity and unity in variety is everywhere present in good music.
Btw, is there a pdf of the piece which you could post for more detailed view? Nice to have a score always.
All in all I found it a very charming piece and I've enjoyed it very much!
Thanks for sharing and welcome to the forum
Thank you for your feedback! The piece was written with sonata form in mind, though not with complete strictness.Here is a copy of the score for reference. For whatever reason, when I export the Finale files as a pdf, the expressions tend to get misplaced on the score. Not sure yet how to resolve this error, though it has not always been this way.
I have just been notified that my piece may be performed as part of a honors composer recital hosted by the director of a state competition I have been applying to the last three years! They finally had enough strong submissions to justify hosting a concert to have these works performed. Date and performers have yet to be officially announced, though it has been disclosed that the composers will be responsible for hiring musicians to perform or perform themselves. Current projected date is late spring. I have confirmed with a friend who is a violinist that they would perform my work if the recital does happen. Here is a recording of the violinist I will have performing the sonata:
I loved the theme and all aspects of your violin sonata. There are delicious details (just one example is the trilled notes in measures 21-22). I agree with Socrates' comments, especially admired your inventiveness in Part C. The theme of Part C is not obviously related to the sonata's main theme and it shows musical instinct to have identified it, because it does complement the main theme. I like the way the sonata ends, too. Basically loved the whole thing.
One funny thing, though, is that I kept waiting for the following derivation to come in, but it never did:
I thought maybe in Part B instead of the main theme you could have used such a derivation, which would cleanse the palate somewhat before hearing the main theme again later. If there was just one thing I would've changed it would be not having the main theme repeat so many times throughout the piece.
Maybe you strongly disagree and... you know best!
A small thing: are the ties missing in measure 26?
Great comments, thank you! About measure 26, I had slurred every two notes in the violin part previously, but the violinist I worked with to revise the part demonstrated why they might be better if taken out. I am not completely sold on that edit yet, though for now it remains in the score as indicated. I have reflected on the piece on several occasions now and may agree that the main theme is repeated perhaps to often, though I have moved on to other projects for now and may come back to that later. That is an interesting variation. What is funny about it? I was very new to composition when creating this work, so many things could have been further developed, but due to the stage I was at and the other circumstances involved, I moved on to other projects. Thank you again for your input!
Oh yes, it's understood you've moved on! I just thought you'd like to hear what was on my mind as a listener, so I just shared my thoughts openly. Obviously I loved the piece.
That is an interesting variation. What is funny about it?
Oh, I just meant it was funny that I kept thinking about those notes, and expecting them to pop up somewhere.
You have a talent and I look forward to future pieces from you.
Congratulations on getting an upcoming performance.
This is very impressive work indeed. I found one thing in the score you might want to change for clarities' sake. Bars 2 + 6 after D, 3rd and 4th beats - you should beam the piano RH as dotted quaver and semiquaver followed by 4 semiquavers, always best to keep it simple if possible I've found.
I see you play violin and am curious as to why there is minimal bowing in the violin part. On a similar theme, was it a conscious decision to not put phrasing slurs in the piano part too?