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Hello to all members,

This post is to announce our Winter Music Contest - members were asked to create a piece which evokes the idea of Winter. The rules of the contest are simple: any instrumentation, 7 minutes or less in duration. 16 members total submitted entries, making this one of the most-participated-in contests which I have run on this site! Please take some time to listen to these entries and vote your top three. The winners will have the honor of having their entries posted to the top of the home page of the site until the first day of summer! Please click the link below to cast your vote! Deadline is 2/14/2015 at 5 pm EST!!

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/R2733RF

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VOTERS’ RESPONSE TO THE “FUN” CATEGORIES - does not count towards contest rankings

Composer A - “Winter Scenes” by Fredrick Zinos - 1 vote for best arrangement, 1 vote for most original sounding work

Composer B - “Winter’s End” by Stephen Lines - 2 votes for most descriptive/pictoral

Composer C - “Scenes From a Magical Snow Globe” by Roger Stancill - 2 votes for coldest composition, 1 vote for best arrangement, 2 votes for most pictoral/descriptive, 1 vote for most heart warming

Composer D - “Midnight Squawl” by Bob Porter - no votes

Composer E - “Hot Apple Cider” by Donya Quick - 1 vote for most original sounding work, 2 votes for most heart warming

Composer F - “In Winter” by Michael Lofting - 1 vote for best arrangement, 2 votes for most heart warming

Composer G - “Impressions of Winter Time” by John (Paul) Smith - 1 vote for best arrangement, 1 vote for most heart warming

Composer H - “Snow Falling” by Dominic Amlot - 2 votes for coldest composition

Composer I - “Solitary Music” by John Summers - 1 vote for coldest composition, 3 votes for most original sounding work

Composer J - “Snowflakes” by Victor Eijkhout - 1 vote for most descriptive/pictoral

Composer K - “Scherzo” by Dirk Honders - no votes

Composer L - “Frosty the Fugue-Nosed Jinglefux” by Kris Emerig - 1 vote for coldest composition

Composer M - “Winter Storm and Death of a Frantic Elk” by Ondib Olmnilnlolm - 3 votes for coldest composition, 2 votes for most original sounding work

Composer N - “A Winters Tale” by Chris Sanchez - no votes

Composer O - “First Snow” by Nicholas Kelly - 4 votes for best arrangement, 1 vote for most original sounding work, 2 votes for most descriptive/pictoral

Composer P - “Une Journée sur les Pistes” by Tim Marko - 1 vote for coldest composition, 1 vote for best arrangement, 2 votes for most heart warming

WINNERS ANNOUNCED!!

1ST PLACE GOES TO Nicholas Kelly for his composition “First Snow”
2ND PLACE GOES TO Fredrick Zinos for his composition “Winter Scenes”
3RD PLACE GOES TO Tim Marko for his composition “Une Journée sur les Pistes”

THANKS to all who entered and to all who voted! Every composer got at least one vote, awesome! Point totals and comments made by voters are listed below.

Composer O - “First Snow” by Nicholas Kelly (33 points)
Comments: (1 - voted for you for first place) “Would have benefited from a full brass section, unrealistic balance.” (2 - voted for you for first place) “Excellent orchestration!!!” (3 - voted for you for first place) “This for me was an absolute standout. Very impressionist and exquisite scoring. Thank you!” (4 - voted for you for first place) “Effective scoring. Held my interest to the end.” (5 - voted for you for second place) “Evoked a winter feel, impressionist with less melody than entry P.” (6 - voted for you for third place) “Technically excellent; rhythmical, interesting and appropriate harmonies, very professional score.”

Composer A - “Winter Scenes” by Fredrick Zinos (21 points)
(1 - voted for you for third place) “Modest but nicely scored and enjoyable. Actually I enjoyed almost all these pieces. Very nicely done, everyone.” (2 - voted for you for third place) “Nice orchestration and melodies but not as full a sound as O and P.”

Composer P - “Une Journée sur les Pistes” by Tim Marko (17 points)
Comments: (1 - voted for you for first place) “enjoyed the melodies as well as the orchestration. The other entries were lacking in one or the other.” (2 - voted for you for first place) “I enjoyed the melodies as well as the orchestration. The other entries were lacking in one or the other.” (2 - voted for you for second place) “Needs a more detailed and subtle orchestration.” (3 - voted for you for second place) “Short and Sweet”

Composer H - “Snow Falling” by Dominic Amlot (14 points)
Comments: none

Composer C - “Scenes From a Magical Snow Globe” by Roger Stancill (13 points)
Comments: none

Composer G - “Impressions of Winter Time” by John (Paul) Smith (12 points)
Comments: (1 - voted for you for first place) “2.35 Reminiscent of Brahms 3.12 Excellent lift via Tierce de Picardy 3.59 - 5.20 Very descriptive of past memories Ending a little disappointing - maybe a codetta to round it off effectively. I'd love to see the score.”

Composer I - “Solitary Music” by John Summers (11 points)
Comments: (1 - voted for you for second place) “While there were problems with the vocal performance (intonation, tone production), I was very impressed with the composer's ability to control such a complex chromatic vocabulary and produce such a moving and original composition with such simple means. A very promising work by a composer of real talent!” (2 - voted for you for third place) “Two short pieces?” (3 - voted for you for third place) “Very unique and well-crafted; captures a very different side of winter than most of the other entries.” (4 - voted for you for third place) “Affected me somehow.”

Composer F - “In Winter” by Michael Lofting (10 points)
Comments: none

Composer B - “Winter’s End” by Stephen Lines (9 points)
Comments: (1 - voted for you for second place) “Good balance between underground/overground elements and interesting harmonies. Describes what's going on musically with appropriate orchestration. ”

Composer L - “Frosty the Fugue-Nosed Jinglefux” by Kris Emerig (8 points)
Comments: none

Composer M - “Winter Storm and Death of a Frantic Elk” by Ondib Olmnilnlolm (6 points)
Comments: none

Composer K - “Scherzo” by Dirk Honders (6 points)
Comments: none

Composer D - “Midnight Squawl” by Bob Porter (4 points)
Comments: none

Composer E - “Hot Apple Cider” by Donya Quick (4 points)
Comments: none

Composer J - “Snowflakes” by Victor Eijkhout (2 points)
Comments: none

Composer N - “A Winters Tale” by Chris Sanchez (2 points)
Comments: none

Though I have posted the comments on these pieces anonymously, commenters should feel free to to identify themselves if they wish to. Thanks again to all who participated as entrants and as voters. The top three entries will be posted to the top of the homepage shortly. Entrants, please do not post your entries anywhere on this forum for one week to allow time for this thread to be the central point of discussion. After that time, you may freely post them where you like. Members of this site, you are now invited to please join us on this thread with anything you’d like to say about the compositions presented here. THANKS ONCE MORE TO ALL THE HARDWORKING ENTRANTS AND VOTERS AND LET THE CONVERSATION BEGIN!!!

Congrats to Mr Kelly for first place! Great job on that piece, for sure. I suppose it's okay if I admit here that that was the one I voted for first place, too? The imaginative harmonic work and orchestration in it was very impressive, indeed. In fact, SO impressive overall that it left me with a bit of an envious grimace on my ugly mug for a while, lol.

Thanks, Bob, that was very nice of you. :)

It turned out I was wrong about which piece it was I thought you'd written... But after the reveal, I went back and listened to yours again, and I've got to say that I really think it should've placed a hell of a lot higher than it did, and I'll tell you why, too: The overall impression in it of telling a story is very well done and consistent throughout. You never lost track of exactly what the "plot" needed to be doing at a given time. It was very visual in that respect, very easy to imagine, say, a frontier family huddled together in a flimsy cabin while the storm beat down upon them. The arc of the whole thing was very nicely managed. I like it better than mine, too, and for that very reason: Mine just wandered all over the damned place, and never really firmly decided what it wanted to do...  

Bob Porter said:

Yes, indeed. Congratulations all around. Truly, three fine pieces of music. It was tough to vote.

Paul,

For what it's worth, I voted for your piece for first. As I was listening, I made brief notes and who I thought the composer was. I guessed yours within 5 or 6 measures, and my only note was "damn".

Way to go Nicholas, this contest was difficult to judge, at least for me, mainly

because it was a general catagory and not a specific format ( i.e. minuet or folk dance)

and unfortunately, I still have not been able to listen to your piece. For some

reason Soundcloud doesn't always play on my computer.

It was fun and surprising tho' to hear all the stylings and approaches to the

idea of Winter.  Each entry had it's own merits and interesting aspects.       RS

OOPS, my bad, it was entry H that wouldn't play. sorry 'bout that.

(note to self;  don't try to post or comment until after coffee kicks in)  lol
 
roger stancill said:

Way to go Nicholas, this contest was difficult to judge, at least for me, mainly

because it was a general catagory and not a specific format ( i.e. minuet or folk dance)

and unfortunately, I still have not been able to listen to your piece. For some

reason Soundcloud doesn't always play on my computer.

It was fun and surprising tho' to hear all the stylings and approaches to the

idea of Winter.  Each entry had it's own merits and interesting aspects.       RS

Congratulations Nicholas, Fredrick, and Tim! All fine pieces.

This was not only the contest with the greatest participation in entries and voters, but also the best music overall. Yeah, I know, "best" is subjective, and all that. There is a lot fine work represented here.

My top picks included two of the winners, plus Michael Lofting's In Winter. The general MIDI sounds in this were pretty rough, but an excellent composition shone right through to me.

Thanks again, Gav, for all the work you put into this contest.

Thanks for that Janet.

Someone said it was a pity I hadn't got it sung. Had thought of using my own, quavering baritone....but that would have probably lost me all my votes. (LOL)

Janet Spangenberg said:


My top picks included two of the winners, plus Michael Lofting's In Winter. The general MIDI sounds in this were pretty rough, but an excellent composition shone right through to me.

First, many congratulations to the well deserving winners of this competition - some very excellent writing indeed.

Paul, you will recall I commented recently on your 'space' music and I'm pleased to see I voted in as No.1 in this contest what I now know to be your 'Impressions of Wintertime'...it would appear that your music resonates with me and I really enjoy it. Like I said in my comments, perhaps a codetta would make it a fully rounded and commercially acceptable piece. Extremely well done.
 


Paul Smith said:

Congrats to Mr Kelly for first place! Great job on that piece, for sure. I suppose it's okay if I admit here that that was the one I voted for first place, too? The imaginative harmonic work and orchestration in it was very impressive, indeed. In fact, SO impressive overall that it left me with a bit of an envious grimace on my ugly mug for a while, lol.

Nice Goat, I thought this turned an A piece into an A+.   baa-ram-ewe      RS
 (I've got to learn how to do this.) What % is equipment/software and what % skill

 if you don't mind saying.

Just for Nicholas:

First Snow - Mastered

Wow! Thanks, everyone! What nice news to wake up to on a snowy morning in Saskatchewan. There were quite a few really excellent entries, and I had trouble deciding which to vote for.

Goat, thanks for this mix! It brings out the important parts much better than my original recording--clearly I'm much more of a newbie at mixing than composing. What equipment/software did you use for this?


The Lonely Goat said:

Just for Nicholas:

First Snow - Mastered

Thanks very much, Mr Lines. Those were all Garritan samples, too, but I did my best with them. I think the fault in my piece is that it tried to maybe put too much into what time we had available... I'll just say here now what I actually intended to do with it, but couldn't get to work out well enough: Having plenty of kids in my house, I intended to depict kids having fun in the snow, and had assigned the male child the part of the oboe, and the girl the part of the flute. So that, near the beginning of the piece, when you first hear those instruments, it's supposed to represent their looking up out of the window in anticipation at the snow coming down. I had this idea that I would use those two instruments pictorially to represent their having fun, but... after the outright violence in the snowball fight section, the thing just seemed a little incongruent with that idea, and I just gave up on it and allowed it to head off in different directions.

Stephen Lines said:

First, many congratulations to the well deserving winners of this competition - some very excellent writing indeed.

Paul, you will recall I commented recently on your 'space' music and I'm pleased to see I voted in as No.1 in this contest what I now know to be your 'Impressions of Wintertime'...it would appear that your music resonates with me and I really enjoy it. Like I said in my comments, perhaps a codetta would make it a fully rounded and commercially acceptable piece. Extremely well done.
 


Paul Smith said:

Congrats to Mr Kelly for first place! Great job on that piece, for sure. I suppose it's okay if I admit here that that was the one I voted for first place, too? The imaginative harmonic work and orchestration in it was very impressive, indeed. In fact, SO impressive overall that it left me with a bit of an envious grimace on my ugly mug for a while, lol.

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