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Questions tagged [composition]

For questions about the creation of new music and the techniques used to do so.

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Are there varying levels of ASCAP's "plus" awards?

ASCAP offers an annual monetary award call the ASCAPlus award to its composer members whose music does not generally get included in its sampling for popular music royalties. These composers include ...
nuggethead's user avatar
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4 votes
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Did Stravinsky ever work backwards?

I've always been intrigued by this little passage in Stravinsky's "Fireworks" (op. 4). It seems to me to be many things all at once, each masterfully handled. It's a nifty little canon, a ...
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Why does Schoenberg think of "'semi-contrapuntal treatment' of the accompaniment" as a way of adapting a motive's melody to changes in its harmony?

Schoenberg says that the melody of a motive may be adapted to changes in the harmony "[b]y transposition," "[b]y addition of passing harmonies," or "[b]y 'semi-contrapuntal' ...
Noah J's user avatar
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Trombone choir and French Horn choir

I’m interested in combining two instrumental groups: a trombone choir and a French horn choir. There seems to be a lot of compositions for either trombone choir, or for French horn choir, but not for ...
Bruce Simonson's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
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Is there a compositional term for an introductory variation on a larger theme?

I’ve noticed that in some music spaces, specifically entertainment and gaming, composers rely heavily on character or main themes as recurring motifs. One such instance I’ve heard recently involves ...
CIFilter's user avatar
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1 answer
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What methods can composers use to make the listener's perception of time feel slower or faster?

When composing or arranging, what methods can be exploited to affect the listener's perception of the speed they are moving through time?
Giovanni's user avatar
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Can I use fast tremolo or triads on the third register?

When I compose music I always tend to avoid writing fast tremolo and chords in the low register as it can get really muddy, but where is the boundary after which I should avoid tremolos and chords? ...
MakKa's user avatar
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What is the proper study of composition and arrangement?

I have been composing and arranging on my own for about 10 months now, i am confident that they sound good but i am not sure, how good, how to make them better and if taking the proper course will ...
Emon's user avatar
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How to improve the harmonic cohesion of my canon?

So this canon is what ends the Presto section of my Springtime Springs piece. As it is now, I only get 2 parallel fifths and no parallel octaves in the entire canon, which I am fine with, since I am ...
Caters's user avatar
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Was Bernstein's interpretation of Mahler's 9th Symphony correct?

During his fifth Norton lecture at Harvard University, Leonard Bernstein famously speculated that Mahler's ninth symphony was symbolically prophesying his own death, the death of tonality (the advent ...
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Are there any recorded cases of two composers working independently composing the same thing?

I heard the Miley Cyrus song Party in the U.S.A. on the radio yesterday (never heard it before) and I heard a vocal phrase that sounded very familiar. I couldn't place it for a while, but then it came ...
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Is deliberate voice crossing a common method for part writing?

In basic harmony exercises voice crossing is avoided. But, in actual string music, well I suppose all instrument genres, voice crossing is fairly common, and by my reckoning it seems to be a method ...
Michael Curtis's user avatar
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175 views

Why do some songs change while fading out? What is it called?

I noticed that some songs repeat a theme and then fade out at the end, but before completely fading out the song "changes". For example, the singer sings different words (that don't appear ...
Mary L.'s user avatar
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Why are Tarantellas usually in a minor key?

Why are Tarantellas usually written in a minor key? Is this an unwritten convention?
Hypergeometricx's user avatar
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What authors have tried to compare a wide variety of styles, specifically with regards to orchestration?

I have never found a guide to orchestration which systematically discusses differences in the theory behind the orchestration/composition choices with regards to different typical stylistic genres, ...
lightning's user avatar
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Why such a difference in balance adding 1 instrument?

I am writing a canon for piano quintet and I notice I'm getting a lot of balance issues. When it starts with 2 measures of piano solo, of course there are no such issues. I introduce new variations ...
Caters's user avatar
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Working on writing a fugue exposition

I am trying to write a fugue exposition in F minor with 3 voices. However, I don't succeed in rewriting the counter-subject in the tonic key. More generally, I was wondering what are the main issues ...
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What is covered in music GCSE?

I'm picking my GCSE options next month and I am considering music. Does anyone know what is covered in it and also what makes up the final GCSE grade?
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Changing the harmony of a motive ''by additions at the end,'' according to Schoenberg

Schoenberg says that the harmony of a motive may be changed ''[b]y additions at the end'' (Fundamentals of musical composition, page 10). He cites examples 25c-i to illustrate what he means (see ...
Noah J's user avatar
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How to compose for 5 notes/two octaves

I am playing a ngoni, a 10 string gourd harp. I have been happily playing various traditional African songs, but I want to progress to writing/improvisation. It seems like with the traditional setups (...
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Composing romantic pieces

I am a fan of the organist Wolfgang Seifen. Recently, he played a piece which fascinated me: An arabesque in the style of German romanticism. (Hear it) Being myself interested in improvisation, I did ...
user7427029's user avatar