I have begun work on a 15-20 minute composition for a four-part flute ensemble at an intermediate (early high school) level. The piece is called "Chorale Preludes in Modern Settings" that would have five to eight short movements where each movement would be based on a hymn or hymns and would use the hymn in a creative manner, rather than just a chorale-like setting. The music would still be mostly tonal and lyrical. Each Chorale Prelude can be performed individually and the composition short work equally as well in a church or concert setting.
The required instrumentation is at least 3 flutes plus a 4th flute, alto flute, and/or bass flute as these three instruments play the same line. There is also an optional piccolo part that mostly doubles the first flute an octave higher in spots.
The first chorale is Now Thank We All Our God. After a two-measure festive introduction, a two-beat fragment of the tune is treated in imitation for four measures. This is followed by two measures of festive music and then the last two measures of the first phrase of the tune. A slight shift in tonality brings in a setting of the third phrase of the tune at measures 11 - 18. Measures 1 - 8 returns at measure 19 but down a step for the first two measures. A four measure interlude that is slightly dissonant ushers in another variation of the tune that lasts until measure 42. The four measure interlude brings the listener to the final variation where the low flutes have the tune stated in augmentation while the upper flutes do the festive tune and fragments in imitation. Measure 69 introduces some chromatically altered chords that build in tension and excitement until the end.
export my Sibelius Music Notation file as a movie (new to version 7.5).
I also use Noteperformer software for the sounds. These are sample
sounds, but the software also includes an algorithm that
reads ahead in the music and phrases the music according to context,
therefore making the realization closer to live performance. I upload
these videos to youtube and embed the video for each
movement. I hope that this technology allows the reader to have an
easier experience and a more realistic performance. To see
and hear what I have discussed, go to http://www.cooppress.net/Chorale_Preludes_blog.html.
As always, your comments are appreciated.