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I have created this site in order to provide performers, listeners and composers with a description of a composer's experiences with the creative process. The posts will provide discussions of the inspirations, challenges, and successes of a composer from the inception of the piece to the culmination in performance. I will provide a link to where you can see and hear the works in progress. Comments and questions are always welcomed. They will not posted unless you grant me permission.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Bachburg Concerto No. 5 Movement 3

This is the last movement of a concerto for two tubas and piano that is commissioned by Thomas Lukowicz of Wright State University. Tom is planning a CD of Bach duets and wanted a modern composition that would fit with the music of Bach. Since Bach composed 6 Brandenburg Concerti, I thought that Brandon should compose 6 Bachburg Concerti. This is number 5 in the series. It is influenced by the music of Bach mainly in its reliance on counterpoint.

In order to contrast the other movements, I chose to write the last movement mostly in complex time. It is mostly in 5/8 and 7/8 and each of these meters frequently change the grouping of 2s and 3s, therefore adding even more rhythmic variety. The irregular meter is offset by sections in 6/8 that I tend to use as a way of settling the intensity at the end of the formal sections. The harmony is a combination of modal triadic harmony and quartal harmony. There are frequent modulations that create tonal variety.

Here is the form of the movement and a description of what occurs in each section:

1-4 - Piano intro 5/8
5-19 - A - consists of 3 phrases a a b - a is in 5/8 and the b is in 6/8
20-35 - A - piano has melody, tubas add fill in 6/8 bars
36-43 - B - 2 phrases - 2nd phrase modulates - combination of 7/8 and 5/8
44-51 - B - repeat of above with slight variation
52-64 - B' - Piano has the melody and the idea is extended
65-83 - A' - the A section is developed by tonality shift and other alterations
85-115 - B - recapitulation of the 3 earlier B sections with the last one leading to the tuba cadenza
116-140 - Tuba cadenza - this section is designed to settle the intensity before the final push to the end - it uses fragments from both the A and B material and towards the end of the cadenza, it derives its material from the first movement
141 - Coda - Uses B material to conclude the movement

I 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/Bachburg5_blog.html

As always, your comments are appreciated.
Dr. B

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