Questions tagged [orchestra]

A sizable instrumental ensemble that contains sections of string, brass, woodwind, and percussion instruments.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
0
votes
0answers
46 views

Does anyone know piece that fills these requirements? [closed]

Hey guys I’ve been looking for a classical or classical sounding symphony orchestra score that includes alto, tenor, and baritone saxophones. Would anyone happen to know any?
4
votes
1answer
77 views

The interaction between strings and woodwinds in an orchestral setting

I have only worked with relatively small orchestras, and in that time, one of the biggest problems is the combination of strings and woodwinds, especially in contrapuntal writing where the main voice ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Is it common for an orchestra to have 5 string double basses?

I recently went to watch Mozart's The Magic Flute and saw at the orchestra that all the double bassists (I think there were 3 of them) had 5 string basses. I had never seen a 5 string double bass up ...
9
votes
2answers
701 views

Partially-optimized orchestra scores?

There are two different conventions I have seen for orchestra scores. In one, the full orchestra is shown on every page. Even if the flutes don't play a single note, (for example) their staff ...
8
votes
4answers
165 views

Why do famous conductors rarely conduct ballet?

Why do famous conductors rarely conduct ballet? However, many famous conductors spend a large chunk of their time conducting operas beside just symphonic works.
6
votes
1answer
659 views

Can you explain the transposing convention in this Jean Sibelius's score?

I am looking at a 1954 edition of Jean Sibelius's orchestral score for Tapiola. It has the Concert Pitch instruments (Flutes, Violins etc) in two sharps. He then has various other key signatures which ...
1
vote
1answer
118 views

How long to wait before following up with conductors? [closed]

An emerging composer is seeking to have some of their work performed by a smallish professional orchestra (i.e. not something like the Boston Symphony, but a fairly well-known regional symphony). The ...
3
votes
1answer
89 views

Who chooses an orchestra's repertoire?

Who chooses the repertoire for a large, state-level orchestra (or the orchestra of major city)? In my experience, in smaller amateur orchestras the conductor is relatively easy to contact (via email), ...
5
votes
9answers
1k views

Counting long rests in music

So, in orchestra we got given Bolero and the third trombone part has 236 rests before we come in (yes I counted). If you're wondering, I'm not some professional player, I'm the youngest in the group ...
3
votes
1answer
76 views

Does having both first and second violin on the same staff replace the use of div. in a symphony score?

With consideration to the general rule that when div. is presented upper notes in the music are played by the violinist sitting on the outside, and lower notes are played by those sitting on the ...
3
votes
3answers
121 views

How could you make a key change sound natural

I've been working on an orchestral piece for a while and I want to include a key change. For example, from Bb major into Eb major. How could one go about changing keys in a way that makes the music ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Do film scores match film dialogue pitch?

Human speech (including dialogue in movies) has a certain pitch. The harmony between the film dialogue and the film score can be influenced by the filmmakers. For example, the score can be composed ...
8
votes
5answers
521 views

What happened to the orchestral scores of Johann Strauss?

As far as I understand, Johann Strauss and his family attempted to burn many of his scores. For this reason, most of them are not to be found on IMSLP. Is this true? One reason I am confused is ...
5
votes
2answers
217 views

What is this chord progression/ascension called?

There is this specific sequence of chords that I have always liked, it ascends by fifths at the same time it ascends by whole tones, ending on a melodic minor scale, scale which has always been my ...
4
votes
4answers
175 views

Intonation when playing with a click track on one ear

Recently I participated in a project where we played film music live with the film playing. We got an earbud that played the click track for one ear so we stayed in time. Now this was an amateur ...
3
votes
2answers
109 views

Where can I read more about Monteverdi's role in the evolution of the orchestra?

I have seen it mentioned here and there that Claudio Monteverdi was the first composer to score for a specific set of instruments, for his opera Orfeo in 1607, and that this had a significant impact ...
4
votes
1answer
841 views

Are "The Carnival of the Animals" and "Danse Macabre" the same piece?

I wonder if "The Carnival of the Animals" and "Danse Macabre" are the same piece? Why are they named differently?
7
votes
2answers
817 views

Why do temple blocks come in sets of 5?

It seems like temple blocks are commonly sold, bought, and played in sets of five as pictured here: Image Source My old high school had a set like this, but we never needed more than two blocks for ...
11
votes
9answers
4k views

How do you count many bars of silence (rests)?

Playing in a jazz band there are often 5,6 or 8 bars of silence. This is no problem as I can count them on my fingers. But how do I count larger rests, for example 52, 112 or even longer rests, as in ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Has there ever been an orchestra without a conductor?

I don't think I have ever seen an orchestra where there wasn't someone conducting. Has there ever been such an example of an orchestra? Edit: By conductor, I mean the guy swinging the baton:
18
votes
2answers
2k views

Tuning the lowest bass string a hair flat

I was listening to Abbey Road but it's just Bass and it sounds like the low E string is a hair flat in a lot of the songs. How did they get away with that? When I was in the pep band many years ago ...
5
votes
1answer
109 views

Modern (Hollywood) score convention for Solo & Tutti

I've written my first orchestral score, and I've engraved it, as best I can, in a style to serve recording it by a conductor and orchestra on a sound stage in a short session, Hollywood soundtrack ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

Orchestra warmup sounds

Background: I am guitar player who does not know anything about tuning other instruments and classical music traditions I really love the sound of warming up (and final tuning) of an orchestra. They ...
22
votes
6answers
13k views

Performance practice of Viennese Waltz

Occasionally, when I listen to an orchestra playing a Strauss waltz or something similar, I hear something interesting in the background rhythm of 'boom chik chik' in that the first 'chik' happens ...
10
votes
5answers
8k views

What are good sources for free orchestra scores?

Are there usable free sources for (symphonic) orchestra scores? I'm talking about legal sources for pieces that are now in public domain.
8
votes
2answers
11k views

Why is this conductor holding a toothpick?

I was watching a performance of Ravel's Bolero, conducted by Gergiev: And I noticed that instead of a baton he was holding a toothpick: Why is he holding it instead ...
2
votes
4answers
114 views

Are there note patterns on each string instrument that can not be played?

I am a high school band kid who is trying to compose orchestral music for the first time. I have done several band compositions, be it jazz or classical, but this is my first time composing orchestra ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Why does the exponential curve that shows up in the orchestra not overwhelm anything?

So, I've noticed these ratios of range in the modern orchestra, which is primarily strings: Soprano:Alto - Factor of 4 or 5 more soprano than alto Tenor:Bass - About twice as much tenor as bass Alto:...
3
votes
1answer
94 views

How to conduct a fermata over a rest?

I'm currently learning how to conduct Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique - Reveries and Passions. In the first few bars there are fermatas over a few rests and I know I'm supposed to prolong and hold the ...
31
votes
4answers
7k views

Why is the saxophone not common in classical repertoire?

Other than the fact that its relatively new compared to other orchestral instruments (e.g. the violin), why is the saxophone (any of them from the family, alto, baritone, tenor etc) not more prevalent ...
1
vote
2answers
219 views

How does a symphony orchestra play in such perfect harmony?

I'm talking about live performances. I respect all musicians who allow us to enjoy beautiful art of music. The number of musicians in a modern symphony orchestra may be up to 100 and each person has a ...
3
votes
1answer
110 views

What is the biggest chord ever written for orchestra?

Firstly I must define what I mean by "biggest". I mean the chord that has the most differently named notes in it not counting duplicates. Initially I was assuming equal temperament but if ...
6
votes
2answers
525 views

How do I transpose an orchestral piece if it will push some of the instruments out of their range?

Chord inversions seem to be the obvious choice, but sometimes it changes the overall harmony or disturbs the voice leading. Am I stuck with that key of whatever the orchestral piece is originally ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

How does Ballet music differ from an Orchestral Suite of the same name?

Now, I've loved Stravinsky's music, ever since 10th grade music appreciation class when we learned that Le Sacre Du Printemps caused a riot at its first public performance. But I discovered to my ...
2
votes
1answer
74 views

Why are keys changed away from the original in some orchestral pieces

I have noticed recently, take this piece for example, The Thieving Magpie Overture by Rossini. There seems to be several versions in different keys. Why are versions made that are different to the ...
1
vote
1answer
46 views

I need help to identify the instruments of a composition (in a movie)

Probably this is very easy to answer for people who know the composition of an orchestra and which sound comes from which instrument. My question is, what is the instrument (or the composition of ...
1
vote
2answers
87 views

Which should I record first?

So my problem is that I don't know which is recorded first, do you record the orchestra first or do you record the drums or guitar first? I've tried recording the drums first but it didn't sound ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Aren't conductors like Valery Gergiev hard for orchestras to follow?

All of the conductors I've had in the past have had a very... English style of conducting. They show you what they want with the baton and then you play it, but God forbid that you play with or (gasp) ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

How does an orchestra hold groove?

I am used to symphonic orchestras playing classical music which does not take a rhythm as a constant, but rather as a variable which could be adjusted based on stylistic demands of the context (I ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

Name of orchestral styles of Krzysztof Penderecki and Elliot Goldenthal

I just came across Krzysztof Penderecki's Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima after learning of his death this morning. The orchestral style is much like that heard in Elliot Goldenthal's score for ...
3
votes
2answers
224 views

Two Stringed Instruments in Unison?

I have been receiving conflicting information from orchestration bigwigs. Some say that composers should never orchestrate two stringed instruments together because they will be ever so slightly out ...
1
vote
3answers
3k views

Why would one choose orchestra over band and vice versa? [closed]

I highly enjoy music, and would like to know what would be better to play in if I do not have any real preference for any genre (I listen to rock the most often and I am the most familiar with it, but ...
0
votes
2answers
79 views

Alternate Criterias for MA in Music (or any other Degree that increases likelihood of getting Orchestras play my works) [closed]

Greetings MusicStackExchange, I put my intention first (I'm in HighSchool, You might need this information to understand why I'm asking this question) : I wish to work with Orchestras and Hopefully ...
11
votes
6answers
2k views

How do composers get their works performed?

How do composers (professional or not) get their works performed by orchestras and soloists? While we're at it, how and where do composers publish their music and where do orchestras/musicians/...
2
votes
2answers
69 views

Orchestra with basses and percussion swapped

I recently attended a concert by the CBSO (City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra) and was surprised to see an unfamiliar layout of the instruments. I frequently attend CBSO concerts and most of the ...
1
vote
0answers
38 views

Looking for "big & brassy" band finales [closed]

I apologize for the crude example, but the last part of "Kyle's Mom's a Bitch" (timestamp: 1:17) is a direct reference to the trope I'm talking about. I've heard finales like these in countless ...
1
vote
4answers
160 views

Problems composing transitions and bridge passages

Background: I have been composing orchestral sketches (non-professionally) for some time now. I see the progress and notice, that everything becomes much simpler after practicing multiple hours a day (...
3
votes
2answers
104 views

Has it always been the tradition for conceto soloists to have their music memorized?

At all the performances of concertos I've attended, the soloists perform without sheet music, whether it is a concerto for piano, viola, or horn. Has this always been the performance tradition for ...
0
votes
2answers
591 views

How to determine BPM by timestamps/events

I'm currently taking part in a scoring competition where the task is to score the music for a product trailer. As common in trailer music I now want to sync my music with the trailer almost ...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

What is this sound, instrument? (Rheingold, Wagner)

I am currently composing something and I really want to have this sound in my piece. It sounds like a small hammer hammering on metal. It starts at 1:08:07 (...