Romantic Music Contest - WINNERS ANNOUNCED

Members were asked to submit a composition in the Romantic style. 5 members participated. Please listen to all and use the survey to vote on the 3 you think best. Voting ends on January 4 at midnight EST. Thanks to all who participated in the contest!


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  • Thanks to the 6 who have voted so far! There are 12 more days in this contest. You can


  • 8 people have voted so far! Can we get it up to 20? There are 8 more days in this contest. You can


  • 10 people have voted so far. 4 days remain in this contest. Can we get up to 20 votes? Show your fellow composers you care and


  • This contest ends on Friday at midnight EST. I will announce the winners over the weekend. Thanks to the 10 who have voted.


  • I'm looking forward to the post contest cigarette and banter.... Everyone talking about the choices they made (by both the voters and composers), and the composition processes.

    There's still time for more votes!

  • I think the voting is over. People can engage in banter now, I suppose.

  • Eleven people voted. The grading took place this way: voters were asked to rank their #1, #2, and #3 choices. For each #1 rank, I gave the composer 3 points. For each #2 rank, I gave the composer 2 points. For each #3 rank, I gave the composer 1 point. Here are the results.

    WINNER: Composer D (Cameron McFadden: "Movement in a Romantic Style") wins the gold with 19 points. Cameron also had the most direct votes for #1 composition (5).

    2ND PLACE: Composer B (Jason Emerson: "Kenoo:") wins the silver with 14 points.

    3RD PLACE: Composer Composer A ( Bob Porter: "Funeral of the Gods") wins the bronze with 11 points.

    Composer C (Andrew Gliebman: "Romance Scene") and Composer E (OndibOlminlomn: "The Scattered Tribes of Pelasgus") both tied with 5 points each.

    Please comment below why you chose whom you chose or offer any other commentary to these talented composers who have placed their works before you.

  • Congratulation! 

    As someone who compose music, I always have some technical critics for pieces I listen to; I always have something to say like: "It should be like this". But it's theoretical thoughts as I have ideas too for someones idea, I don't want to ruin composers with that here. I didn't analysed theoretically, I vote based on my taste as an audience, listener; I pretend to listen of these in a live performance. This is my support to competitors:

    1. It was hard for me at first to choose because the pieces written in different instrumentation and not all of them have Romantic style. But.. since I can choose three.. 
    2. My first favorite is "Movement in a Romantic Style" because I think it's the closest with Romantic style (or Classical period). I like it because it reminds me of Mozart. So much fun to enjoy.
    3. Second piece I like is "Funeral of the Gods". It's not 'requiem' (read: grief) enough for me and I don't know which Gods they are so I don't know the story behind it.. but I do like the music. It has beautiful melodies dramatized by timpani and the bells. I also like the moment where I can hear the flute vaguely played (I think it's a part of the climax), it succeed makes me fly.
    4. It said that "Kenoo" written (or not?) by Jason Emerson ; I saw the name Isaac Liam on the pdf file and it's copyrighted. Is Kenoo is arrangement of its origin? "Kenoo" is my third favorite piece. It sounds jazzy to me. 

  • I did write Kenoo, and it is original material. I put Issac Liam on the score as a pseudonym. It is my son's name and I often use it as pseudonym for contests that require it. Sorry for any confusion.

    God's Peace,
  • On the issue of "Romanticism" and the winning entry, I would like to state the following:

    The work seems to fall into the category of "early Romanticism," characterized by the chamber styles of Beethoven, Schubert or their contemporaries, rather than the styles of Mozart and Haydn, in my opinion. Certain shifts and abrupt pauses indicate something less "classical" (in the Haydnesque sense), and something which could definitely be called Romantic, though I understand why a listener would think, "This is classical, rather than Romantic." I think of Max Reger, though the tonality here is not that "modern." (Of course we could debate whether Reger is a neo-classicist, or something else, but that would take us too far afield).

    What is most striking about the String Quintet, from my point of view, is the coda, which far more resembles Beethoven's humorous play with coda expectations than it does the coda of any classical piece.

    I thought this piece was extremely well done, nicely paced, concise, and engaging. Anyone who has not listened to the entire piece will enjoy it, thoroughly, if he has any familiarity with the string quartets of any of the above mentioned composers. It could not be considered "high romanticism," in the way that a Brahms chamber piece would be.

    Concerning the historical issue:

    We can say that Romanticism proper begins with Beethoven's Third Symphony, 1804-1805. The contestant's String Quintet could, theoretically, have been written during the years 1825-1830, when Beethoven and Schubert were writing their late chamber works.

    However, let us remember that Romanticism is a style, rather than a epoch, in the final analysis.

    So the piece "Funeral of the Gods," which seems to me more like a piece by Vaughn Williams, Delius or Elgar, in terms of tonality and mood, could be called Romantic, in the sense of neo-Romantic.

    I don't think any of these pieces sound exactly like they could have been written during the Romantic period properly speaking. They all betray signs of having been written in the modern era. Nevertheless, they all have primary features that could be described as Romantic. Each piece could be discussed individually, in terms of moods and influences, that would qualify them as part of the a long term Romantic tradition.
    In short, while the winning piece might seem more restrained, less "free formed," than some of the others, I think it still definitely qualifies as Romantic, due the resemblances it has with early Romantic pieces.

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