Author Topic: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?  (Read 1377 times)

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Ron

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February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« on: February 01, 2017, 05:01:31 PM »
I recognition of the shortest month of the year, this month's question is: which do you find easier, more rewarding, or simply more desireable, to write: short works or longer works?


My standard end of January joke: "Winter's over. February is such a short month we don't count it, and spring always arrives in March." (Please, keep your groaning down!)
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Michel.R.E

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Re: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2017, 05:09:18 PM »
I LOVE short forms... I just can't do it anymore. Whenever I try to write a short piece for solo flute, it always ends up being accompanied by a 500 piece orchestra, 1000 singers, 5 marching bands, and lasts 50 hours, written in 63 movements played non-stop.

My earliest works are a set of suites, two for piano, one for english horn and clarinet, one for solo cello, and the 5th for woodwind quintet (there was actually a logic to it... one piano... two hands.... three reeds.... four strings.... five winds....)
Anyway, very short pieces, 5-6 movements suites that lasted less than 10 minutes.

There's a certain freedom to writing something so short. And at the same time, the difficulty of making such a short form feel directional and complete.
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Periwink

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Re: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2017, 11:44:58 PM »
I'd love to write something long, never done it before. I imagine it'll be so much more rewarding:)
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gogreen

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Re: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2017, 06:01:45 AM »
I am so entrenched in writing for specific difficulty levels, I cannot imagine just, well, writing. So all of my material is, I suppose, short-form.

RJB54

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Re: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2017, 06:48:55 AM »
I'm definitely a long-form writer as I consider a piece of 4 - 5 minutes (such as my recently posted Meditation #1) as a small piece.
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tbmartin

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Re: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2017, 08:31:16 AM »
Short so far. Many of my quartets are arrangements of piano works that were originally 3-4 minutes. My current project is a concert band piece that's also about 4 minutes.  I've got 2 pieces in the sketch stages that are longer, but only because I envision them as having 3 or 4 movements, each lasting up to 5 minutes. So even my "longer" works are really just short works that are connected.
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MikeL

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Re: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2017, 09:16:55 PM »
My longest piece so far is about eight minutes but most are three minutes or less.

I do worry for beginners (and I count myself amongst them) wanting to start off with a symphony or concerto .
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Ron

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Re: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2017, 04:18:17 AM »
My longest piece so far is about eight minutes but most are three minutes or less.

I do worry for beginners (and I count myself amongst them) wanting to start off with a symphony or concerto .

You'd be surprised how many of them do. MakeMusic used to have a "showcase" for "composers" to post their works. This forum was cluttered with so many "symphonies"--2 or 3 pages long without a single accidental--that it was virtually impossible to locate anything of merit. There were tears and protest when they ended this showcase, but, as far as I'm concerned, it was a mercy killing.
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flint

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Re: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2017, 01:45:41 PM »
I prefer long forms and larger ensembles since that's the way I think.

I have a lot of difficulty wrapping my brain around small chamber music works, because I end up thinking "well, with only X players, how much can I actually say?" Keeping in mind that "melody" is probably one of the least interesting parts of music to me, and the smaller the ensemble, the more the music becomes about melody.
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whitebark

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Re: February, 2017: Short or Long Works?
« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2017, 02:50:22 PM »

You'd be surprised how many of them do. MakeMusic used to have a "showcase" for "composers" to post their works. This forum was cluttered with so many "symphonies"--2 or 3 pages long without a single accidental--that it was virtually impossible to locate anything of merit.


Hey, you've just described the Musescore.com forum!   I am a member, and it looks like all the MakeMusic "symphony" composers have gravitated there.  That said, some good original works do get posted at Musescore.com, along with many nice transcriptions of existing pieces.  But just try and find the good compositions among the million or so lesser scores....

Most of my compositions run about 7 - 9  minutes, most as part of a multi-movement work ... so long form for me.