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Hi Tillerich

To be honest, the piece itself (composition) took about 4 hours, but I already had a handwritten sketch to deal with the whole tone harmonies in a consequent manner. The virtual performance took me 2 weeks to complete (some experimenting with different rooms included). To be able to realize such a performance, I think a DAW is necessary (Studio One Pro 5 in my case). Notation programs don't usually have the mixing tools on board that are detailed enough to complete a virtual performance, except perhaps Dorico, the last version. In my opinion, a good virtual performance is required to reach out to the outside musical world in a believable way: It is so to say the first impression of a composition.

My notation program is Notion (or recently Dorico)

My DAW is Studio One Pro (formerly Logic X Pro)

Instrument libraries: almost exclusively the full libraries by VSL, but also some working with Native Instruments player. (not here in this piece)

Impuls Responses and Reverb: VSS II, MIR Pro, Vienna Suite (and of course the buil-in tools in Studio One), SparkVerb

Mixing tools: mixer of Studio One, Vienna Ensemble Pro (also with EQ, compression and other plugins of Vienna Suite)

Best regards,


Tillerich said:

Thanks, Jos. I wonder if you don't mind a follow-on question and if you would share how long it actually took you to write the piece (plus the extra time to then get the sound right in the detail you described)?

To be honest, I have got not idea at all regarding the potential dimensions that may be usual or normal for pros or semi-pros, like you are.

However, I can declare my own effort here, with a sense of taking a good risk of properly embarrassing myself: putting together "Sergei sees Red" needed probably something like eight hours (!!) net time, or, actually, even longer. 

This was, to some degree, for technical reasons (some ongoing struggles with handling my old Sibelius 6 program), but also for reasons of being challenged by handling the material (even getting a real grasp of the original parts as the basis of the piece). This may be, overall, regarded as a very poor ratio of time investment and outcome (both in quantity and quality) - even though I personally now quite like the result.

Saul's work sounds as if it was almost put together without effort - and he may have improvised large parts of it within minutes - but then he and you, Jos, certainly have a massive amount of experience on top of a solid base of musical understanding and knowledge.

Thank you very much, this is really interesting and helpful.

I agree that the sound "makes the music" - and if it is somewhat grating it can be immediately off-putting. I shall think of that carefully for the next competition etc. ;-)

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