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I started work on the second movement of this piece, which will have three movements when it is complete. I plan to use an ABA structure for this movement. The A section starts out in 6/4 time and has a dark, almost dirge-like feel.  The B section uses the lydian mode and has a lighter mood. I've only started this section. I've got much more work ahead to complete the movement.

Well, here is the work in progress:



Works in Progress: Senior / Re: String_Sextet_03
« Last post by RJB54 on Today at 08:06:01 AM »
Thanks for your detailed response.
Works in Progress: Senior / Re: String_Sextet_03
« Last post by Michel.R.E on Today at 07:18:06 AM »
if you don't want a continuous sound, then the fingering you describe (where the fingers change strings), then it's playable.
But remember that to lift one finger you have to have that fraction of a second of time to move it to the new string, and during that time neither of the two strings are being stopped.
remember that during this, the bow is moving along the string, creating the sound.

ok, pulling out my viola, I just checked what I THINK are the notes you asked about.

the lower B, and the subsequent F# have to be barred with the 1st finger. (ie: both strings depressed simultaneously by the same finger). the problem is the D and G also have to be barred with the same finger.
It's difficult to visualize, but you have to take into consideration the notes both vertically, AND horizontally to figure out the fingering.
If you don't want the A and F# to be played legato, then you might have time to change fingers when the bow stops between the first pair of notes and the second.
If you want the notes played legato, it's simply not playable.

Just remember this: the same finger can skip to a DIFFERENT string with a break in the sound, but it can slide to a new position on the SAME string with nothing more than a tiny portamento.

The safest bet for the example passage you ask about in this post is to remove the lower note of the 2nd pair (D), then it becomes perfectly playable. OR, hold that low B through A-F# above.

This is one of those instances where strictly adhering to the compositional rules of your system is going to cause you problems, it WILL limit how you write for strings. You'll have to find some other way of including that lower D if it is absolutely required by your tone row, fit it into the notes of one of the other instruments.

That said, I'm looking back at the score and wonder why you don't just give that B (from 2nd violin) to the 2nd viola
(it would be a barred 5th, played with one finger: B over E, probably a bit insecure for intonation depending on the quality of the musicians, but let's assume pros, then it shouldn't be an issue),
having the 2nd violin NOT play any double stops at all, just have violin 2 play G# - E - E - G# - G# - G#

ignore the fact that you have a rest in all parts except the violins on the last half beat. if that B (now in viola 2) cuts out for a half a beat it REALLY won't show.

Note: ok, this response has been allover the place mostly because I just woke up and responded to your hypothetical before going back to the actual score. but the answers should all be right.
Works in Progress: Senior / Re: String_Sextet_03
« Last post by RJB54 on Today at 06:06:12 AM »

Having had some time to look into what you were saying, I see your point about the double stops in bar 19. In this instance it was a brain freeze on my part where I actually had a B where I was thinking I had an A (open string) which messed up the whole sequence of double stops. I had to change the whole bar because the note must be B to match the row. I'll have to go through all of the double stop passages once again to make sure I didn't make such mistakes elsewhere.

As for the concept of the hand positions, I do tend to not keep that in mind when I'm planning out double stop passages. I guess I tend to just plot out the available notes to fingers and don't really worry about the finger movements like I should. I'll have to be better about that.

A question in that vein. If you have a passage such as A over B moving to F# over D, my thinking is that that would not be difficult in that the A would be played by the third finger on the E string while the B would be played by the first finger on the A string and then the F# would be played by the first finger on the E string and the D would be played by the third finger on the A string. Thus, the player would just be moving the fingers back and forth between the A and E strings and that would be no big deal. Am I wrong?
Works in Progress: Senior / Re: String_Sextet_03
« Last post by RJB54 on April 16, 2019, 10:04:18 AM »
OK, thanks for the info. I'll have to keep these sorts of issues nearer the top my stack as I work on string things.
Works in Progress: Senior / Re: String_Sextet_03
« Last post by Michel.R.E on April 16, 2019, 07:53:01 AM »
some of the doublestop work in the violin parts will be awkward or problematic.
remember that going from an interval smaller than a 5th to one larger than a 5th (or vice-versa) requires a significant shift in hand position.

at measure 19, the G/E (beat 2) will require the higher note be taken on the lower string, so that will have to be notated in the score.
The fingering in measure 20 will be awkward.

In general, good string writing manages to place single notes (ie: no double-stopped) between changes of hand position, such as those required to skip back and forth between a 3rd and a 6th.

the most comfortable hand position, and the most natural, is where the 1st finger (index) is on the lowest string, while the 4th finger is on the highest string. This fits the natural curvature of the hand.

doing the opposite places the 4th finger stretched across strings (and the 1st finger compressed against the hand), adding the risk of hitting one of those lower strings with the hand. it gives a very confined space within the hand to finger the strings.

for example, a chord made up up stacked 6ths is very easy to play.
A chord made of stacked 3rds is nigh impossible without the inclusion of some open strings.

So basically, rapid shifting of hand position, back and forth between smaller and larger intervals, is not idiomatic, nor comfortable, on a string instrument.
Works in Progress: Senior / Re: String_Sextet_03
« Last post by RJB54 on April 15, 2019, 06:57:14 PM »
Jerry, I would assume that the issues you are referring to would not be a problem in a live performance.

As I've said a number of times I find many aspects of Finale's performances to be lacking.

As I have also said before, I don't have the time, patience, or money to get into post-Finale sound processing so what I post is what Finale generates, for good or ill (often ill).
Works in Progress: Senior / Re: String_Sextet_03
« Last post by Jerry Engelbach on April 15, 2019, 11:11:43 AM »
As always, your approach to harmony fascinates me and the sound is always interesting. And the structure of the piece is effective and satisfying.
I see from the score that there's a lot of movement going on within. I don't know whether it's a limitation of the software, but I don't hear a lot of that movement, the result being more a blend of sound.
The volume of the first violin also seems a little weak to me.
Should I assume that these would be addressed in a live performance with subtle dynamic variations?
Works in Progress: Senior / Re: String_Sextet_03
« Last post by RJB54 on April 15, 2019, 07:57:51 AM »
OK, thanks.

I'll address those issues as I continue with the engraving of the rest of the piece.
Chit Chat / Re: Quora questions on music
« Last post by Michel.R.E on April 13, 2019, 12:13:36 PM »
I simply can't Quora any more.
My face was starting to hurt from all the /facepalming the incredibly stupid questions were causing me to do.
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