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Topic: Lesson 3 Discusssion

  1. #11
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    West Seneca, NY

    Thumbs up Re: Lesson 3 Discusssion

    Personally, it is nice to hear the examples at proper tempo and dynamics. An importance in relaying the strength at which RK’s examples was meant to portray. These examples were produced with clear objectives. Many thanks.

  2. #12

    Re: Lesson 3 Discusssion


    In the No. 3. Spanish Capriccio, Section J example, I thought placing the entire first violin section so high would cause intonation problems. How does RK get away with having the violins play the melody up so high with out the tuning problems?


  3. #13

    Re: Lesson 3 Discusssion - missing ex. 10 midi file?

    Hi - I'm having a problem with the Excercise_10-Legend_of_ Kitesh.mid file in the example 10 exercise. When I download I get only 456 bytes (compared with 2.6 Kbytes for example 11). Logic complains that "no tracks found", and the quicktime player plays nothing. The midi files in the other two exercises in this lesson work fine. I first tried to download the problem file yesterday (6/16).

    On to lesson 4. Thanks again for a great tutorial!!

  4. #14

    Re: Lesson 3 Discusssion

    Quote Originally Posted by karelm
    How does RK get away with having the violins play the melody up so high with out the tuning problems?
    Good violinists are expected to be able to play quite high without many intonation problems. I know that's sort of a circular answer, but the fact is that they learn to play high because composers expect them to be able to. (For a time, I did more orchestral playing on viola than on violin; this was one of the reasons.) Assuming a good orchestra, the problems would lie more in the fact that the instrument isn't all that resonant way up there -- but you can solve that problem by doubling the part at the lower octave. In fact, in the present example, this doubling is done by the first flute, first oboe, and first division of the second violins, all in unison, while the first horn doubles yet another octave lower. However, the first violins will still be clearly audible, particularly if the string section is as large as Rimsky must have had in mind.

    Naturally, you should think twice before writing this kind of stuff for a high-school orchestra or other group whose players cannot be expected to be competent way up there. In such a case, you might write the really high stuff only for the concertmaster, and have the remaining first violins play another part.

    Actually, this is as good a time as any to bring up the subject of solos. It's not at all unheard-of to ask for only part of a string section to play a particular passage -- perhaps a solo violinist, or 3 solo violas playing different parts, or 2 desks of celli. There are three common reasons for this:

    1. Ease of playing or coordination: some very fast or very free passages may come out muddy if more than one person plays them. Or, as mentioned above, the composer may not expect that everyone can handle the passage. Even in a professional orchestra, you can write harder material for the concertmaster than for the rest of the section.
    2. Difference of tone color: particularly with violins, a solo instrument sounds completely different from a section. Sometimes composers want the solo tone, not the group tone. Or the passage may be of a soloistic musical style (Haydn was fond of putting short concertolike passages in his symphonies for the concertmaster and principal cellist).
    3. Similarity of tone color: this sounds like the opposite of what I just said, but bear with me. Let's say you have a low flute solo that you want to accompany with sound of the full string section. In a large orchestra, the strings might drown out the flute. You could have them use mutes, but that would change the tone rather drastically. What to do? You might just have half of each section play. Or only 2 or 3 desks. That way, you get the sound of an unmuted string section, but the flute can come through better.
    Marnen E. Laibow-Koser
    Composer / Web developer

  5. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    The Hurricane place

    Re: instrumentation question

    Quote Originally Posted by rickc
    In the City of Kitesh score clarinet I is designated at the top of the section. Then it splits into two voices at the end. Should we presume that the two clarinets are plaing the sextuplet figures in unison.

    Actually that brings up a general question; what woodwind configuration is called for in this score (i.e.,pairs, threes,etc.)
    From looking at the example directly from the book*can't remember everything sequenced!* It would seem CL 1 is playing the tuplet until the split and assume here that CL 2 comes in. That is going to be the assumption as explained below.

    As for the woodwind configuration, that is unknown. The examples in the back do not start like regular scores with what all instruments will be in the piece from the start. It seems almost as if the copyist in general did a haste job and tried to make things a bare minimum to fit the page as I found so many errors ranging from wrong notes, no tempo indication, to articulations ect. To top it off I did leave out "extranous" material as it was discovered that there could be 15 seconds of music before the actual part in question comes into play, hence they were deleted/trimmed/split as later examples often refer back to the earlier stuff for different reasons.

    From any back example it is hard to tell what configuration the piece has or any of them as the back examples only have what is going on in that particular time/space of a musical piece. Finding recordings of these is hard, I did manage with alot of surfing to find some, but not all.
    Robert Davis

  6. #16

    Re: Lesson 3 Discusssion

    Ideas on locating information on size of orchestra: A good academic library should have scores of at least some of the orchestral works. Also, there are guides to standard symphonic repertoire that list what instruments each work requires (conductors can use these in planning programs and figuring out how many musicians they need). Oddly enough, I haven't located a list of this type on the Web.
    Marnen E. Laibow-Koser
    Composer / Web developer

  7. #17

    Re: Lesson 3 Discusssion

    This is well done. A considerable measure to consider. One issue, I can't download the midi documents, QuickTime Can Someone Do my Assignment continues opening them and playing them with some inner sounds

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