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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.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Inventions - Movement 4 - Morse Code

This is the fourth movement of a composition being composed as a result of a brass trio commissioning consortium. The title "Inventions' has a double meaning as a musical invention is a short contrapuntal composition that is usually based on a single theme. The second meaning is that each movement represents a significant invention. There will be five movements.

I had fun trying to work out a scientific approach to composing this movement and having it sound musical. My goal was to create a simple rondo form where the A sections would spell out in Morse code the words "brass trio" and the B sections would spell out the names of the three brass instruments. Eighth notes were used for the dots and quarter notes for the dashes. Eighth or quarter rests were used for the spaces between the letters.

The first part of the A section is homophonic and in the second part, each instrument plays their own line in canon with entrances a quarter note apart. The dashes at the end of the tailing instruments were elongated so that the instruments could end together. The harmony is a mixture of gentle tone clusters and triads.

The B sections are either monophonic in texture as each instrument plays its name or contrapuntal as the lines overlap.

To make this work, I used a lot of dynamic changes for variety and adjusted the ends of the sections to create cadences.

The form is ABA'B'AB''A''Coda. The Coda spells out the words "The End."

Below is the transposed score and sampled sounds in video format. Your comments are always welcomed.

Dr. B

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