Locating Melodies and Harmonies: A Composer’s Journal

February 6th, 2014

The composer carries on doing work on the piece ‘Glimpses’ for flute and piano. A Composer’s Journal Entries: January 28 – 31, 2014.

Enlarge Picture Tuesday, January 28

Inexplicably, we are nevertheless in January, even now in our polar vortex – below zero weather conditions stretches ahead for some days. Listened to a fowl bravely singing the other early morning, like a flute in the sunshine – as out of place in our altering winter season landscape as 1 could at any time picture. I looked but observed absolutely nothing, just a lone voice with no a visible physical human body…

Wrote a web page of piano notes for Movement I, peaceful eighth notice triplets to accompany a flute melody – creating after a lot of measures, including octaves in the proper hand. Will proceed the passage afterwards, it is mostly created discovering the other tones and harmonies will not be tough. Previously the audio is composing itself with extremely minor support from me. Somewhat like the fowl on our studio roof.

The primary choice now is no matter whether to complete the first Motion – or carry on sketching out the entire piece. I am commencing to much more plainly hear the Dance of Movement III, and pondering I should create it all down on paper before it disappears…

In real truth, I have not even decided regardless of whether this piece will be a few movements – or a single piece prepared in different sections, united into 1 motion. More a Fantasie than a Sonata. I locate supporting arguments for each, and inwardly am producing both variations – but soon I must consciously decide on between them. Unquestionably, on a deep level of my being, the determination has currently been produced…

As a Fantasie, in a single motion, there would be no extended silences in between actions, no complete completion of ideas at the stop of movements, no large mental and emotional adjustments in the listener from motion to motion, i.e. there would not be a few individual parts offering a few worlds, three independent universes for the musicians and listeners to traverse… And yet, there is this kind of Beauty in using the listener to diverse interior and outer worlds in this way, the place the viewers can roam a little bit, get familiar with the landscape, delve into on their own, bask at leisure in that certain inner realm prior to the up coming motion begins…

If composed in one movement, as a Fantasie – as a composer I would build the piece really differently. The total form of the piece would be more demanding and creative, more imaginative, and far more exciting to write. Written as a complete in this way, the listeners would follow the path set prior to them in a single grand sweep – more as although astride a magic carpet that normally takes off and then eventually lands. The general result would be a lot more spontaneous and cost-free – much more a reflection of the pictures, the poetry that describes the tunes…

And right after writing all those considerate words and phrases in my small notebook, I am no closer to a choice than when I commenced.

And so I will instead carry on composing motives, melodies, harmonies, and rhythms on empty sheets of manuscript paper – and leave the decision until the music itself declares an intention.

Wednesday, January 29

Extra a handful of strains of flute melody to the eighth be aware triplet motive of the piano (from yesterday). Extended the piano line.

All I have settled on, in terms of the all round form, is that I will maintain the buy of the photographs/poems I wrote intact. But if a Fantasie, a a single motion piece, the general sort will be much more creative and intricate, and as a composer this intricacy has its possess appeal. If 1 motion, the 1st two poems and their themes and harmonies and rhythms would alternate – and the dance would come previous, with achievable hints of the other two sections within the dance.

This edition would be a single afternoon, or early morning, or night, or working day in the forest, 1 experience to live, take pleasure in, savor and then don’t forget…

As three individual movements, the photos/poems could happen whenever, unconnected, perhaps at various ages or levels of our lives. Right here the listener can savor the concept and splendor of every single movement. Even though the poems have been prepared to suggest a relationship of activities, a linear encounter.

Yet another chance: blend the very first two poems into 1 movement – and then probably only a short pause before the dance, i.e. in essence two actions but with out a true split in between. This would allow innovation to the all round type in Motion I, with the two musical photographs alternating – and have the sensation of a two movement piece, but continue being inherently and fundamentally one entirety… one particular movement… A Fantasie…

In the meantime, I am attempting to discover a piano motive that will represent sunlight coming through the leaves – and two realms meeting for an immediate, the mundane world and the clairvoyant 1…

Thursday, January thirty

Scribbled a couple of much more crowded internet pages of notes in pencil across blank sheets of manuscript paper new themes, new motives. Notice heads and stems strewn everywhere as I run out of space on the website page, new ideas inserting them selves in haste, like snowflakes borne on the wind, to be sorted out later on, arrows everywhere… Nonetheless doing work on the initial two poems, enabling the themes and motives currently selected to unfold on to new internet pages, new notes and stems touring across the webpage like a painting in development little by little masking the canvas… Performing or producing a piece – is a journey, as considerably a journey as taking a prepare to some distant metropolis or town, keeping your ticket and seeking out the window at the hills and fields as they go by, nevertheless knowing the place you started out and also anticipating your spot, each click on of the rails a heartbeat or breath…

Have more than ample themes and motives for the first two poems. The music for the initial poem ought to be sparkling with daylight and laughter, the 2nd far more mysterious, mystical. Most of the third poem, the dance, is already outlined in my head. The dance will be less complicated to compose – though also pretty intricate compositionally, technically. Will start with hints of the dance, and it will all gather momentum as it goes.

Made the decision late last night time that this piece will be a single movement, in generally two sections, AB – with area A alternating among the very first and next poems. Total a binary kind, but A – virtually 2 times as lengthy as area B – and the B section may incorporate motives from A, fragments right here and there to hook up the sections.

Technically, Glimpses will be around ABA’ (perhaps ABA’B’ or ABA’B’A’‘) – adopted by C (the dance). Until I commence creating the rough draft from my sketches, I will not know how numerous instances to alternate the first two poems, or when/where to fragment them. At the second all I have to perform from is a growing stack of sheets of manuscript paper scribbled in excess of with themes and motives and rhythms… It is nonetheless all a grand and thrilling mystery, a treasure hunt…

11 pm.

Commenced jotting down a topic for the stop of the Dance – in my thoughts at least, the whole piece is practically prepared.

Friday, January 31

In the kitchen area previously, having a glass of drinking water – considering that on a single hand only composers can genuinely know the infinite chance of audio, and on the other, at moments, what a big difference 1 chord or even a single be aware can make, specially in a melody line. To drop a melody line one particular phase although creating, or to elevate it even by a single tone can alter everything, every thing, and every thing. To action upward in pitch alternatively of downward could suggest the difference of a practice trip to Marseilles vs Moscow. And once you overlook the quit at Marseilles, if an specific practice – off to Moscow you go, with or without your luggage and toothbrush…

This could be why composers can write very easily, effortlessly for great stretches – and at other occasions drop into a coronary heart-wrenching wrestle above one chord or note. These seemingly modest choices can decide the final result of a piece that is so vastly distinct from its alternate truth that it might as properly be an additional country or universe, an fully various sonata or symphony. And until you are a composer facing the blank sheet of manuscript paper, this would be tough to conceive, this missing or acquired globe. In a sense there is usually regret, the two as an interpreter and as a composer – and I can only talk for myself listed here – for I nicely know the world’s missing when I make a determination of this type. In quick, when composing or interpreting music, 1 can’t go to both Marseilles and Moscow, a single need to decide on between them…

Maybe, this is one particular purpose why composers carry on to compose new music, the painters continue to paint, the writers proceed to create – as a way of discovering people dropped worlds, the fervent wish to help them into manifestation…

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