Author Topic: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins  (Read 324 times)

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paulr

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Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« on: September 16, 2018, 06:37:03 AM »
Hello,

I developed /composed this in Sonar.  I offer my apologies in advance because I really tried to create a reasonable score from it but the bizarre quirks of Finale defeated me.  It seemed in the end to be "making things up", i.e. adding notes that were not in the file at all.

In future I will probably start in Finale (or Notion?) and finish in Sonar (or another DAW).

I am linking to a midi file and an MP3.

Please feel free to engage as much or as little as you wish.

If anyone does want to discuss this, my particular question (apart from the usual ones) would be: is it worth making a proper score from this?

regards, Paul.

ps it's just under 20 minutes.

Also I have become much more busy (not with music unfortunately) and have had some family issues and have not really been able to take part here very much for quite some time.  I will do what I can to make amends.

Links rather than uploads:

Audio: https://www.dropbox.com/s/az3hcxl39jb4kiw/two%20violins%20and%20orchestra.mp3?dl=0

Midi: https://www.dropbox.com/s/54pre9nc30tby3l/two%20violins%20and%20orchestra.mid?dl=0
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whitebark

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2018, 07:48:45 PM »
Thanks for sharing your piece, Paul. It definitely needs a better title (although "long piece" is an apt description  :)).  I enjoyed listening to your work, which felt like it was taking me on a long journey through a moody, gloomy landscape. There was enough variety in your orchestration and harmonic techniques to maintain interest.

Nearing the end, the music took on an optimistic tone, like a ray of sunshine breaking through the clouds, but clashing major and minor chords at the end brought things to an uncertain end.

You might consider adding an unaccompanied, extended cadenza for the violins to play toward the end of the piece, as it is concerto-like in a way. And you need to create a good-looking score for others to review (although, as you mentioned, this could be problematic).

Again, nice work!

-Jay




Jerry Engelbach

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2018, 10:43:18 AM »
If anyone does want to discuss this, my particular question (apart from the usual ones) would be: is it worth making a proper score from this?
Paul,
 
Yes. Because it's such a complex score, it would be helpful to have a notated version of it.
 
I'm impressed that it's such an ambitious piece. It contains many interesting sections. I don't know if it's conscious, but I hear places that remind me of Holst's The Planets.
 
Your theme fragments are engaging, the interweaving of different instruments is exciting, and the acoustic space is clean and transparent.
 
That having been said, I have a few caveats.
 
I don't feel the sense of unifying motifs. Instead, a section starts and arouses an expectation of further development, but then changes to something else.
 
An example of this is that a couple of times the music intensifies and speeds up and seems about to soar, but then subsides to a slow pace again.
 
The very complexity of it is at times overwhelming, and I'm not sure about maintaining audience interest for so long in a piece with an overall slow tempo.
 
Thanks much for sharing it.
 
Cheers,
Jer
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paulr

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2018, 11:48:39 AM »
Thank you for your kind comments and insights  Jerry,

And thank you very much for taking the time to listen to it. 

I will try again with the score - but it may be a while. I've moved on to something else for now.

I wasn't conciously following The Planets but I do know the piece.  I'll listen again. 

Yes, I knew the structure was problematic. 

Quote
I don't feel the sense of unifying motifs. Instead, a section starts and arouses an expectation of further development, but then changes to something else.
 

There is a certain amount of thematic intregity but some of it may be too heavily disguised.  And yes the sense of it being 'one section after another' is very clear.  The trouble is that has two solutions: 

  • Develop each or some of the sections and still find a way back to the next part - which makes the whole thing even longer
  • Or cut some sections and develop and integrate what is left

I'm reluctant to give this the time required for such major revisions.   It has taken so much time and has taken overall years to complete.  As I said I don't have as much free time now and my day job is a stressful one - more so at this time of year.  I don't think I should take it on at the moment and my inclination is to learn my lesssons and adopt a different approach in future. 

If I do attempt anything like this again I will compose in Finale (even though I resent the lack of control compared to DAWS, particularly of timing and dynamics).  I would still finesse in Sonar (or Cakewalk as it's now called).  I would also sketch, experiment and plan much more than I did. 

And you are right about the tempo.  That's something I might look at in the minor revisions I am going to do next on it.

In the short term I'll just tidy up or improve some of the transitions if I can then put it on Soundcloud.

It is much harder to do what I was trying to do than I realised at the start - not that I though it would be easy.
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paulr

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2018, 12:00:28 PM »
Thank you Jay, I'm glad you liked it.  The 'uncertain end' was completely intentional. It is still 'happier' and simpler than the beginning which it kind of echoes but I wanted to avoid that kind of unambiguous conclusion.  Still right at the very end there's a simple minor chord. 

The 'sunshine' passage does have optimism but it was not meant to entirely convince.   

Thank you for taking the time to listen. 

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mjw58

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2018, 01:36:31 PM »

Thank you for posting this. As mentioned by Jay and Jer a score would be nice.  :)

I for one find it easier to compose using Finale, save it as MIDI and then load it into Cubase. My DAW of choice.

Maybe because Iíve used Finale for so long that I find it easier and I need to make a score that looks OK.

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sandalwood

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #6 on: September 22, 2018, 05:47:26 PM »
Thanks for posting this. I agree with what Jay has said and with Jer when he says

Your theme fragments are engaging, the interweaving of different instruments is exciting, and the acoustic space is clean and transparent.
 
That having been said, I have a few caveats.I don't feel the sense of unifying motifs. Instead, a section starts and arouses an expectation of further development, but then changes to something else. An example of this is that a couple of times the music intensifies and speeds up and seems about to soar, but then subsides to a slow pace again. The very complexity of it is at times overwhelming, and I'm not sure about maintaining audience interest for so long in a piece with an overall slow tempo.

I, too, had the impression of listening to a series of well-written, engaging passages which I enjoyed but I was not totally able to perceive them as parts of a unified whole.

Though I'm guilty myself of providing sloppy scores till the piece is finalized, it is good to hear you've decided to work with a notation program in future works.

Reha

LA Dierker

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #7 on: September 24, 2018, 08:51:29 AM »
Hello Paulr,   
      I really enjoyed this Long Piece for Orchestra, and yes, I agree with all of the comments made, it is worth putting into notation.
And your own suggestions of either a longer, more developed piece, or a shorter one are good ones.  I think Host's The Planets has had an effect on many of us with the amazingly powerful music, especially harmonically!
         Thank you for posting this composition and I do hope you might find time in the future for revision and notation

perpetuo studens

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2018, 01:57:26 PM »
Apologies for the slow response but I've been having some health issues that are keeping me from getting anything done.

I actually don't have a lot to add to what's already been said but I wanted to offer my support for completing this piece. There's so much lovely stuff going on here in all areas, melody, harmony and orchestration. It does feel a bit rough at this point, not really like a piece as much as a plan for a piece IMO, but I assume that's why you posted it to the In Progress section. :)

I hope you continue with this and keep us all posted. And just because there's an echo in here apparently, a score would be really helpful. :)

Jamie
The perceived object...is not a sum of elements to be distinguished from each other and analyzed discretely, but a pattern, that is to say a form, a structure: the element's existence does not precede the existence of the whole, it comes neither before nor after it, for the parts do not determine the pattern, but the pattern determines the parts: knowledge of the pattern and of its laws, of the set and its structure, could not possibly be derived from discrete knowledge of the elements that compose it.

That means that you can look at a piece of a puzzle for three whole days, you can believe that you know all there is to know about its colouring and its shape, and be no further ahead than when you started. The only thing that counts is the ability to link this piece to other pieces...

Georges Perec - Life: A User's Manual

paulr

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #9 on: September 29, 2018, 08:59:15 AM »
Thanks for posting this. I agree with what Jay has said and with Jer [...]

I, too, had the impression of listening to a series of well-written, engaging passages which I enjoyed but I was not totally able to perceive them as parts of a unified whole.

Though I'm guilty myself of providing sloppy scores till the piece is finalized, it is good to hear you've decided to work with a notation program in future works.

Reha

Thank you Reha. 

I think there are relationships between the 'sections' (and even some pretty clear echoes) but it does not transition properly (in other words one section should feel as if it develops out the section before).  Very hard to do, as I said in a previous post. 
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paulr

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #10 on: September 29, 2018, 09:02:29 AM »
Hello Paulr,   
      I really enjoyed this Long Piece for Orchestra, and yes, I agree with all of the comments made, it is worth putting into notation.
And your own suggestions of either a longer, more developed piece, or a shorter one are good ones.  I think Host's The Planets has had an effect on many of us with the amazingly powerful music, especially harmonically!
         Thank you for posting this composition and I do hope you might find time in the future for revision and notation

Thanks LA, for listening and for the encouragement.
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paulr

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Re: Long Piece for Orchestra and Two Violins
« Reply #11 on: September 29, 2018, 09:04:33 AM »
Apologies for the slow response but I've been having some health issues that are keeping me from getting anything done.

I actually don't have a lot to add to what's already been said but I wanted to offer my support for completing this piece. There's so much lovely stuff going on here in all areas, melody, harmony and orchestration. It does feel a bit rough at this point, not really like a piece as much as a plan for a piece IMO, but I assume that's why you posted it to the In Progress section. :)

I hope you continue with this and keep us all posted. And just because there's an echo in here apparently, a score would be really helpful. :)

Jamie

Perpetuo,

I hope your health improves.  Thank you for making the effort to listen and to think about it and comment. 
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