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View Full Version : Conclusion to the course, and a look ahead



belkina
01-06-2007, 08:16 AM
If you have followed the whole online course, congratulations! Rimsky provides a very solid basis for a beginning orchestrator. Although we will be offering other opportunities to learn orchestration, I have a few comments here.

- Once you have learned what is reasonably easy to play, it is not hard to orchestrate tolerably. Because of the history of instrumental design, most of what can be played without much difficulty will sound at least acceptable. However, GOOD orchestration is another matter altogether. Because something does not sound like a catastrophe does not mean it is well orchestrated!

- Debussy said that Ravel had the most sensitive hearing of anyone he had ever encountered. Good orchestration is not only about what is obvious at first hearing. In particular, it is worth paying attention to what is going on in the background. An orchestration which merits repeated listening will show more interesting and subtle detail as you get to know it, and most of that detail will be in the background planes of tone. Learn to distinguish what makes really good orchestration REFINED.

- Real orchestras cost money, LOTS of it. Unlike GPO, when a non-virtual orchestra uses a tuba player for only 4 notes, they have to pay him for being there the whole time! Make sure you make reasonable use of the instruments you demand, proportional, of course to their role (the tuba player will rarely play as much as the concert-master).

- Many of the most important things in Rimsky are mentioned only ONCE in his book. Keep in mind that a real teacher would hammer away at these things again and again. Go over the material again and make note of the main PRINCIPLES.

jamiha
01-06-2007, 10:05 AM
Garritan/Belkin and the Rimsky team,

It has been a real ride. Thank you.

Like other fine journeys, the details of every scene along the road fade quickly to mere highlights. To absorb more, the trip has to be taken many times. A good tour guide helps.

So, what time does the next train leave?

Thanks again,
best
tony

Aleksandar
01-12-2007, 02:45 AM
Thank you very much you all good people, who made this course possible. It was a great experience.

Aleksandar

Stamak
01-14-2007, 11:27 AM
If you have followed the whole online course, congratulations! Rimsky provides a very solid basis for a beginning orchestrator. Although we will be offering other opportunities to learn orchestration, I have a few comments here.

- Once you have learned what is reasonably easy to play, it is not hard to orchestrate tolerably. Because of the history of instrumental design, most of what can be played without much difficulty will sound at least acceptable. However, GOOD orchestration is another matter altogether. Because something does not sound like a catastrophe does not mean it is well orchestrated!

- Debussy said that Ravel had the most sensitive hearing of anyone he had ever encountered. Good orchestration is not only about what is obvious at first hearing. In particular, it is worth paying attention to what is going on in the background. An orchestration which merits repeated listening will show more interesting and subtle detail as you get to know it, and most of that detail will be in the background planes of tone. Learn to distinguish what makes really good orchestration REFINED.

- Real orchestras cost money, LOTS of it. Unlike GPO, when a non-virtual orchestra uses a tuba player for only 4 notes, they have to pay him for being there the whole time! Make sure you make reasonable use of the instruments you demand, proportional, of course to their role (the tuba player will rarely play as much as the concert-master).

- Many of the most important things in Rimsky are mentioned only ONCE in his book. Keep in mind that a real teacher would hammer away at these things again and again. Go over the material again and make note of the main PRINCIPLES.

In deference to your last comment about the course (repeating the material!). Will a version of this course be released on DVD for purchase at a later date. I do feel this would indeed help in learning the techniques by having this source material at hand.

Regards Stamak

belkina
01-14-2007, 11:54 AM
I believe Gary has already mentioned his intention to put out a hard copy eventually.


In deference to your last comment about the course (repeating the material!). Will a version of this course be released on DVD for purchase at a later date. I do feel this would indeed help in learning the techniques by having this source material at hand.

Regards Stamak

Serge
01-14-2007, 12:11 PM
Good orchestration is not only about what is obvious at first hearing. In particular, it is worth paying attention to what is going on in the background. An orchestration which merits repeated listening will show more interesting and subtle detail as you get to know it, and most of that detail will be in the background planes of tone.



You are so right. It's probably why I'm addicted to "La Mer" From Debussy.

Thank you for sharing you time with us and I second Stamak for his suggestion.


SergeD

Garritan
01-15-2007, 01:40 AM
We have reached the end of the course already! We started last April and have gone thrpough quite a bit of material. It has been a worthwhile learning adventure and I thank you all for participating.

To my knowledge, nothing like this has been done before. I hope it serves as a model for other courses.

And a big thank you is in order for Prof. Alan Belkin and the other professors who asissted in this course.

In this extensive orchestration course, you have built a foundation for learning more about orchestration. There are many resources available. This course will remain here so people can come in and learn at their convenience.

If you'd like to learn more, we'd love for you to continue to join us for future courses.

Gary Garritan

Rhap2
01-15-2007, 12:43 PM
My sincere appreciation to Gary Garritan and Prof. Alan belkin for this marvelous course. Although I have studied continuously for a number of years and have traveled the path through academia, I learned a lot from this online course.

It's really inspirational to know that it will reside here for awhile as a musical research instrument.

Again, to Gary: thank you for your vision and leadership in making this course possible; to Alan: thank you for your professional, analytical and pedagogical talent in interpreting RKs narrative for all of us.

Jack

ejr
01-18-2007, 12:57 PM
What happened to the chapters at the end of the book, dealing with orchestrating for vocalists? I suppose that would have been too hard to illustrate aurally. However, since I have a copy of this book and am thoroughly familiar with it, the real value of this course for me was the input from more modern composers. I was looking forward to what they would have to say about arranging vocals and how to score accompaniment for singers Perhaps, that should be the next logical step for the next course.

stevebryson
01-21-2007, 05:50 AM
Hi Gary and company - Thanks and thanks again for this course )(~ . It is truely an amazing and inspiring contribution. I haven't been able to work on the course for a while, but I hope it will stay available so I can catch up. I look forward to what comes next from you.

Steve

belkina
01-22-2007, 05:31 PM
The sections of RK on orchestrating with singers are indeed important. We may be able to do someting about them at a later date. For the moment, the simulation of voices is still a problem, but that is gradually changing. Meanwhile there are other things on the way before much longer. ;-)


What happened to the chapters at the end of the book, dealing with orchestrating for vocalists? I suppose that would have been too hard to illustrate aurally. However, since I have a copy of this book and am thoroughly familiar with it, the real value of this course for me was the input from more modern composers. I was looking forward to what they would have to say about arranging vocals and how to score accompaniment for singers Perhaps, that should be the next logical step for the next course.

wes37
01-28-2007, 05:12 AM
How long will this material stay on this forum? I'm currently deployed and won't be able to really invest time in this course until I return.

Any additional thought to bundling the course on a CD-Rom and selling it?

rino
01-28-2007, 10:12 AM
Any additional thought to bundling the course on a CD-Rom and selling it?
...same thought here!

snorlax
01-30-2007, 09:03 AM
We have reached the end of the course already! We started last April and have gone thrpough quite a bit of material. It has been a worthwhile learning adventure and I thank you all for participating.

To my knowledge, nothing like this has been done before. I hope it serves as a model for other courses.

And a big thank you is in order for Prof. Alan Belkin and the other professors who asissted in this course.

In this extensive orchestration course, you have built a foundation for learning more about orchestration. There are many resources available. This course will remain here so people can come in and learn at their convenience.

If you'd like to learn more, we'd love for you to continue to join us for future courses.

Gary Garritan

I would like to add a few words as the course comes to an end...

My first word is THANKS to all of you who made public and private posts to me about the low brass instruments, how they work, and how best to write for them. Your questions were insightful. Stay tuned; there's more to come on low brass!! I promise...ALSO: PLEASE DON'T STOP DEVELOPING!! Just because the course is "over" doesn't mean that you stop working--KEEP GOING!!

My second word is THANKS, as relayed to me by many low brass players, who saw what I wrote about the instruments, saw what some of YOU wrote for them, and beamed with enthusiasm...today's low brass players are better than ever and await your further efforts!

My third word is THANKS to all of you who participated, in public or in private. Many of you have bravely subjected your work to public scrutiny--the comments were both kind and developmental--it couldn't have been done any better.

My fourth and fifth words are THANKS to Gary for putting this course online. He has stated so many times that his goal is to make music more available to people, and he has scored a big Peyton Manning Touchdown success(sorry--a Colts fan!) with this course. I'd also like to express my appreciation for Gary's allowing me to play a small role in this by copying some of the excerpts and advising on the low brass.

Finally, but certainly not least, THANKS to Alan Belkin for his pivotal role in helping us to develop our skills. He is both a powerful composer and a wonderful educator.

Again, as an educator myself, my parting words to my students every semester are that LEARNING NEVER STOPS, even when class is "over." Please use this as a start and KEEP GOING!!

Jim Williams

andrewjs
02-01-2007, 11:30 PM
There are a lot of threads for this course, so forgive me if this question has already been asked.

Are all the audio examples throughout the course made *exclusively* using the Garritan Orchestra library? Or were any other libraries used? You don't have to name them if they were, but I'd like to know if these samples genuinely represent solely Garritan.

Thanks,
Andrew

Garritan
02-02-2007, 12:45 PM
There are a lot of threads for this course, so forgive me if this question has already been asked.

Are all the audio examples throughout the course made *exclusively* using the Garritan Orchestra library? Or were any other libraries used? You don't have to name them if they were, but I'd like to know if these samples genuinely represent solely Garritan.

Thanks,
AndrewAndrew,

The vast majority of the scores used GPO. In a few cases the Strad, JABB, GOS and GPOA were used.

Gary Garritan

Jeannot Welter
02-04-2007, 10:20 AM
With the study of Rimsky everybody should have a solid fundamental knowledge of orchestration. To further develop orchestration techniques I recommend the study of scores by Debussy and Ravel, especially the scores that exist in both piano and orchestral versions.
Another interesting study is Ravel's orchestration of Moussorgsky's "pictures".
Prokofiev and Bartok are two other favorites of mine, sometimes they go against mainstream principles and are highly successful...

Jeannot Welter.

andrewjs
02-12-2007, 12:03 PM
Andrew,

The vast majority of the scores used GPO. In a few cases the Strad, JABB, GOS and GPOA were used.

Gary Garritan

Are all of the sound samples in this series created by playing the scores through Finale with GPO or the other libraries you mention? Or were they scored then exported into sequencers and tweaked, for example? I am trying to understand the process for using these libraries to create decent sounding orchestral mockups, and the ones I've heard so far here in this course sound quite good.

Also, what is GPOA? Is there a page dedicated to this product that explains its differences over GPO?

Thanks,
Andrew

kinikinik
02-15-2007, 02:39 PM
I enjoyed the course immensly and can't wait for the next sessions to begin.

I have no formal education beyond high school (and school band), so this, to me at least, gives me a taste of what the heart of orchestration and music composition really boils down to. I have found a new respect for both the classical and modern composers alike, and their music.

At 71 years of age, I am playing "catch up" with self education. I have learned so very much from this extremely vital course. Please keep it going.

--Don Moore (kinikinik)

snorlax
02-15-2007, 03:10 PM
I enjoyed the course immensly and can't wait for the next sessions to begin.

I have no formal education beyond high school (and school band), so this, to me at least, gives me a taste of what the heart of orchestration and music composition really boils down to. I have found a new respect for both the classical and modern composers alike, and their music.

At 71 years of age, I am playing "catch up" with self education. I have learned so very much from this extremely vital course. Please keep it going.

--Don Moore (kinikinik)

Glad you liked it...I'm "only" 55 and I'm having a great time. This is a great learning place...stick around; there's more to come!!
Jim

Cantabile
02-15-2007, 07:39 PM
Are all of the sound samples in this series created by playing the scores through Finale with GPO or the other libraries you mention? Or were they scored then exported into sequencers and tweaked, for example? I am trying to understand the process for using these libraries to create decent sounding orchestral mockups, and the ones I've heard so far here in this course sound quite good.

Also, what is GPOA? Is there a page dedicated to this product that explains its differences over GPO?

Thanks,
Andrew
Guess I can chime in here:) Minus a few(which sounded fine just in finale alone) almost all was done in sonar using GPO, strad, Grof, ect as I prefer sequeuncers absolute control over a computer based decision(there is nothing wrong with the notation route, it is just my preference to have complete control and sequencers can only do that). GPOA stands for Garritan personal orchestra advanced(not yet out).

androdriguez
02-17-2007, 12:24 AM
Hello to everyone from Caracas, Venezuela

This is the first time that I write on this forum. My name is Andrés Eloy Rodriguez, flute player, arranger and composer.

I am visiting the forum since a lot of time but due to some complications with my spare time I´m dedicated to follow the course in-depth. I am readed some chapter of the Korsakoff´s book and I am agree that the contents of the on line course are wery well adapted.

I would like to make a constructive criticism about.

The Rimsky Korsakoff orchestration book belong to a generation of very important composers during an historical period. We are in the XXI century since seven years ago, and during the past century, others orchestration criteria, appeared on the field. For instance, the work of Strawinsky (Rite of the Spring, Petrouska, etc. ), Schostakowick (symphony Nº 5, 9, 10) for name some examples. I could understand that the Korsakoff course was intended for people that could be taking the first steps on composition, but this course could conditioned that, and the end of this, many people is composing.....in the same way!!!. It´s could sound like people is following a cliché in order "how to compose". I think that the freedom on composition is a very fundamental tool.... and that the orchestration evolution depend of the new combinations of sound of the instrumental palette. Debussy, Strawinsky and Shostakowick were pionners on this kind of innovation.

What the point? Korsakoff´s course could be a reference, but what about other sources? Could you offer, for instance, and on-line Samuel Adler orquestration course? Or an alternative forum about analyses about the work of Stravinsky focused on the use of the orchestration? Or about Impressionism (Ravel, Debussy, Satie). Even contemporanean techniques on orchestration like Penderecky´s works. Could we get on-line some courses that are reflec of a multi-polar world?

I am not mean that the Korsakoff music is "old fashion". I mean that many criteria about Orquestration has been used after XIX century, and that those criteria are not been presented yet, taking advantage on this formidable plataform.

It´s jus a point of reflexion about the evolution of the tendencies. It´s not my intention of make polemical matter about the results of the course.

Thanks for the opportunity of express my opinion.

Many kinds of regards

Andres Eloy Rodriguez

http://www.osv.org.ve/aspx/cv.aspx?MID=87
http://www.onkora.com/integrantes/flauta.html

androdriguez
02-17-2007, 12:34 AM
Sorry...I had a mistake on my text:

I wanted to say on the next pharagraph the following:

"I am visiting the forum since a lot of time but due to some complications with my spare time I AM NOT dedicated to follow the course in-depth."

Thanks

Andres Eloy Rodriguez

Garritan
02-17-2007, 02:30 AM
Andres,

Thank you for your reply and welcome to the course. I understand what you are writing about. The Rimsky-Korsakov text sets forth the basic principles of orchestration. It is not intended to be the sum total of all knowledge of orchestration but it does lay a firm foundation from which the student can advance their studies.

We are just getting started and more will come. We are planning to offer more course that will explore some of the more modern composers and on-line courses for the "multi-polar" world.


Best regards,

Gary Garritan

chikitin
09-22-2007, 08:55 PM
I wish there were some check box on the left of each staff so we could select the instruments to play. I know I am asking too much! Thanks a million Gary!

Garritan
09-24-2007, 11:50 PM
I wish there were some check box on the left of each staff so we could select the instruments to play. I know I am asking too much! Thanks a million Gary!chikitin,

We are working on doing that in the future.

Best,

Gary Garritan

chikitin
11-01-2007, 03:50 PM
chikitin,

We are working on doing that in the future.

Best,

Gary Garritan

It would be wonderful Gary. Northernsounds is the best!

MoviesAndMusic
05-08-2008, 04:57 PM
This has been an eye-opening introduction to orchestration for me. I never realized before that the artform was so nuanced. Thanks for putting this together!

One technical concern: on several of the lessons in the course, all of the interactive score examples were non-functional. Did anybody else have this problem?

AustinComposing
12-29-2008, 10:55 PM
An excellent course, detailed but still accessible. Well done to all involved

ZacPB189
12-30-2009, 10:49 AM
In deference to your last comment about the course (repeating the material!). Will a version of this course be released on DVD for purchase at a later date. I do feel this would indeed help in learning the techniques by having this source material at hand.

Regards Stamak

There is a copy of Rimsky-Korsakov's book at http://www.imslp.org . They also have a copy of Berlioz's orchestration book as edited by R. Strauss, too. I've found both very helpfull.

Also, thank you, Garritan and Prof. Belkin, for putting an "abridged version" so I could understand what Rimsky-Korsakov was trying to say.

AlexBG
07-13-2010, 03:09 PM
Fully agree with wouldrichest.
Arranging vocals and how to score accompaniment for singers is very important topic.
Regards
AlexBG

composerland
01-08-2011, 12:01 PM
It's not that easy to get a decent education in composition, which includes orchestration - not until now. There's no excuse, any longer.

In 1981, I had a middling teacher. After that, I gave up on finding insightful composition teachers at university. I had one bright spot at City College - CUNY, in 1988.

I stumbled on this interactive method - impressive method!

While there may be no substitute for an excellent teacher, most writers of music today, in 2011 have very little in the way of a teacher. It's not only wise, for lessons can make the Garritan program sound a lot better, but it is an act of kindness.

I missed the class on orchestration (which would have used Piston), years ago. To be able to access the text, to hear it in GPO terms: this will make an enormous difference to me.

Thanks. Peace to all who make music.
Sylvester Wager

Markdu
12-28-2011, 01:39 PM
I've just finished the course and am wondering a little 'what next?'. I'm planning to read through the book again and to read Adler's one as well. I'm also going to continue to compose and of course to orchestrate some of my material, which up to now has been mostly in an electronic/jazz/progressive style. I am currently 'sitting in' on music lectures in a music degree programme in a local university (I teach in another department there) and this course has dovetailed really well with that. If anyone had any suggestions for further study or how to take the next step into actual orchestration as opposed to the study thereof, I'd appreciate it.

One other thing I was wondering about: There were plenty of great exercises during the Melody section but they disappeared altogether once the Harmony section started. Why was that? It's a pity as I found working through the exercises was a great way to consolidate and integrate the material.

Anyway thanks to Gary and to everyone else for putting this great resource together. It has changed my approach to composition drastically. I also bought GPO last night, even though I already own EWQL Silver Complete and the Orchestral Jam Pack included with Logic, which is my DAW of choice. Silver is missing some instruments and articulations and the whole interface etc. of GPO looks very good and user-friendly so I am looking forward to getting stuck into learning and using it.

Mark

Edit: I've just discovered the GPO Academy so that looks like it will go a long way towards answering my question about 'what next?' as well as providing the opportunity to do more assignments and exercises. Excellent.