Questions tagged [orchestra]

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

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4
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2answers
135 views

How to keep my scroll out of my stand partner's face

I'm playing on the outside of my desk, and my scroll is constantly in my stand partner's face. To have my violin off to the side seems kind of necessary for me to keep good posture, but this clearly ...
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2answers
652 views

Where does the soloist stand (sit) in a concerto?

Is there a standard location? In any piano concerto that I remember, the soloist was to the right of the conductor. In a recent cello concerto, the soloist was also to the right of the conductor and ...
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2answers
100 views

Is there a specific name for phrases in music that create tension/anger?

In a lot of music I hear phrases that are very hard hitting. Forgive the vague reference but this can be heard in orchestral music where for example a timpani, violin/strings all hit together for a ...
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5answers
141 views

Will my orchestral compositions be disregarded if I do not hold a degree in music?

I want to get a grasp of the current state of things, and my question is quite simple. If a person does not have a university degree in music, does he have any chance to get his orchestral works ...
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3answers
695 views

How difficult is the orchestra part of Rachmaninoff's 3rd piano concerto?

I would like to play this with my high school orchestra (with me as piano), and I was wondering how difficult the orchestra part of this concerto is. Would a typical high school orchestra be able to ...
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1answer
183 views

Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture: which side of orchestra are cannons usually on?

I am wondering if there is a typical or traditional side that the cannons for 1812 Overture are usually at in the orchestra and, if there is a preferred side, what reasons there are for choosing that ...
2
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1answer
104 views

Is clip-on tuner suitable for stage in orchestra?

I googled and saw videos in youtube about tuning in classical orchestra during their live performance. I was wonder if somebody tell me that using clip-on tuner for instruments (like violin) in ...
16
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3answers
583 views

Are there historical or musical reasons to why the concertmaster of an orchestra is a violinist?

So far, I have found and read a number of articles about the role and duties of an orchestra concertmaster, or first violinist. There is also this possibly related question which discusses the spatial ...
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2answers
1k views

Why are time signatures not used in this score?

I was looking at this hand-written short score (to be completed by other arrangers): The only thing that strikes me about it (maybe there should be others) is there is no written time signature. Why? ...
2
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2answers
155 views

What types of orchestra degrees are there

I am doing an Essay about careers we want to be and I am writing about being a musician. I had a question that I could not find anywhere on the internet: What type of degrees there are in music? I am ...
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5answers
1k 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/...
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4answers
1k views

Incorporating the piano into the orchestra - when and why?

Having heard a few orchestral works that incorporate a piano merely as accompaniment (see below for some examples), I'm now curious: When (approximately), and under what circumstances, was the ...
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3answers
1k views

Could you say that in an orchestra some instruments talk to each other?

I'm asking this question in regards to a website project we're starting about a classical orchestra. I'd like to know if there's a sort of conversation between instruments/musicians in a symphony, for ...
3
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2answers
839 views

Identifying orchestral sounds

Following my previous question about new instruments in orchestras, I was listening to a few concerts and well, some write the instruments being used throughout the concert, others don't. Most don't. ...
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10answers
13k views

Have orchestras included any modern instrument lately?

Over the years orchestras have added various new instruments to their set and I'm thinking that there are quite many modern interesting instruments that might be included in an orchestra set. Have ...
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2answers
216 views

Mahler Symphony 5: Notes say Db but recording says D

I've been practising Mahler's 5th Symphony for quite a while now on the piano (the transcription/arrangement by Otto Singer II) and I recently realized that I was playing a D instead of a D-flat, ...
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2answers
1k views

Limitations of String Instruments

Clarinet is my main instrument, but I also play the alto saxophone. I, a woodwind player, am attempting to compose a string quintet. My question is this: what are the physical limitations of the ...
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1answer
132 views

Orchestra notation and harmony

For instance I have 3 groups of violins and 3 instruments in each group. I want a clean C major chord from those 3 groups. What's my best choice? To have 1 group play a C, another one an E and the ...
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4answers
3k views

Tutti & Solo notation

So while practicing Chopin's Sonata no.2, I decided to study a bit of writing a Concerto. But there is this notation that always leaves me clueless, which is the "Tutti" and "Solo" notation. I ...
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6answers
4k views

Should low frequency players anticipate in orchestra?

"The bigger the instrument, the heavier the strings, the bigger the bow, the bigger the mouthpiece, the more you should anticipate." This concept is expressed occasionally by double bass players, ...
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3answers
293 views

Does First Chair Have To Be Smart and Know Everything? Can You Not Ask For Help?

I'm quite aware that being in first chair makes you both the leader and makes you known to be the best player in the Orchestra. But at the same time can even someone in first chair be at times ...
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2answers
91 views

Are instruments in a symphony grouped by the composer and are chords localized there?

I have been studying the score of an overture by Mozart in MuseScore and I noticed that the woodwind instruments and the one of the violins were playing the supertonic chord with the 6th degree ...
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2answers
774 views

Score for orchestra tuning

I was talking this monring about Cage's 4:33 and I mentioned that I'd love to see a score for an orchestra tuning. It's one of the most recognisable sounds in concerts and has many distinctive musical ...
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1answer
1k views

Why did Liszt change/add so much to his piano transcription of Danse Macabre?

I'm interested to hear if anything is known about the reasons why Liszt decided to introduce some pretty significant changes/additions to the piano transcription of Danse Macabre by Camille Saint-...
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4answers
360 views

The term for voice effect in orchestral music

What do we call those voices (it feels like lot of people singing together) in an orchestral music or epic music which make it more epic?
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3answers
2k views

Should I play in a concert band or orchestra? [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 ...
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2answers
2k views

Orchestra recordings only in piano concertos [duplicate]

I have been thinking about doing a piano recital on my party in July and planned on doing Bach harpsichord concerto no.1, but there aren't any recordings of the orchestra only. Do any of you know how ...
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4answers
942 views

does everyone in the orchestra (or ensemble) play in the same key?

Does everyone have to play in the same key or is the key accustomed to the instrument section? for example, clarinet would use Bb major? What is a transposing instrument?
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2answers
462 views

Hearing a click track above an orchestra

The amateur orchestra I am in, the Cambridge Concert Orchestra, are involved in the Somme100 FILM project which means we'll be performing Laura Rossi's score alongside the silent film footage. To keep ...
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4answers
1k views

How Common Are the Trumpet in C and Clarinet in A?

In the wind/marching/concert band world, trumpets and soprano clarinets are always in Bb. The orchestra, however, uses trumpets in Bb, C, and D, and clarinets in Bb and A. I understand that clarinets ...
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3answers
8k 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 ...
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1answer
1k 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 ...
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2answers
619 views

How can a cello soloist practice projecting over orchestra?

How can a cello player practice to project over an orchestra as a soloist? I know that one must reset their perceived level of dynamics so that even a piano dynamic can be heard, but I was wondering ...
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3answers
884 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:
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2answers
332 views

How to make music link together more naturally - composition

I have been composing some music recently for some orchestra's. I'm just using a simple virtual instrument at the moment, but I do plan on getting better. I find that a lot of music I create feels as ...
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7answers
45k views

What is first chair?

I am under the impression that first chair is the seat reserved for the best player of a particular instrument. Second chair would be reserved for the second best. Is that all there is to it? Or does ...
4
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1answer
936 views

What is an orchestra “reading session”?

On orchestra calendars I sometimes see events called "reading sessions", such as this one: Pittsburgh Symphony 11th Annual Reading Session What is a "reading session" and how does it differ from a ...
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3answers
334 views

What techniques can be used to get a bigger, more resonant orchestral bass drum sound?

In college we had a conductor who really like deep, resonant bass drum sounds (think movie explosions). What are some ways to get more oomph out of a concert bass in a live setting?
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4answers
5k views

Do the violas often play the same parts as the violins in an orchestra?

Are violas always part of an orchestra? How are they typically used? Do they often play the same parts as the violins to create a richer texture? I'm new to orchestration and have been wondering ...
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10answers
8k views

Why are conductors required at orchestra performances?

I am not a music expert and I have always wondered why orchestra performances require a conductor to play. The musicians are presumably professionals who have had much practice at this point, so why ...
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3answers
2k views

Arranging a piece for full Orchestra

I have recently finished writing an intermediate level piece for piano duet, and think it would sound pretty good when played by a full orchestra. Only problem is I don't know any one who can arrange ...
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4answers
369 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 ...
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3answers
1k views

Difference between the string section and wind section

Something I noticed after playing in various orchestras: When a wind player in an orchestra finishes a tricky part or a solo well, the surrounding wind players honor this with a silent applause even ...
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2answers
664 views

Classical music vs March music relationship

What is the relationship between March music and Classical music? To the non-musician they seem to be interchangeable or at least largely overlapping. But I find March songs much more enjoyable and ...
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1answer
314 views

How to use choirs in epic music

I'm relatively new to MIDI orchestration and would like to start using choirs and vocals in my tracks. I understand using them to emphasize hits and climaxes, but I would like to imitate songs like "...
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4answers
15k views

When to use a2 / unis / tutti in orchestral score?

So far from most of the sheet scores I've read, a2 is used mostly in wood and brass instrument staves, while unis. (and on rarer occasion, tutti) is in string instruments. It is even possible to see ...
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5answers
9k views

Why does the orchestra tune to the oboe?

Most of the time, an orchestra will tune to the oboe. Why is that? What is the next instrument if, for some reason, there are no oboes?
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6answers
865 views

What greater possibilities allows playing late from the conductor

There's a lot of differences in the way conductors direct the tempi in orchestral representation, but one of them is the timing between when we're expected to play and the actual down movement of the ...
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5answers
2k views

Tuning hierarchy for orchestras

Several recent questions have been about tuning. Often an orchestra will tune to the oboe. One reason for this is that oboes are the only instruments that cannot be tuned. 1. What if the oboe was ...
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2answers
950 views

What's so off about the intro to Prokofiev's Dance of the Knights?

Now this question is by no means an attack on any conductor or orchestra, nor Prokofiev himself, but why does it seem that it's hard for everyone to get right into time with one another with this ...