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Some . Principles of Design. IN MUSIC. Some. PRINCIPLES OF DESIGN. REPETITION VARIATION CONTRAST BALANCE – symmetry/asymmetry EMPHASIS - accent ECONOMY PROPORTION SCALE. Eadweard Muybridge, photographer. Repetition/Variation in Music.

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Principles of Design

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Some

Principles of Design

IN MUSIC


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Some

PRINCIPLES OF DESIGN

REPETITION VARIATIONCONTRAST

BALANCE – symmetry/asymmetry

EMPHASIS - accent

ECONOMY

PROPORTION

SCALE


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Eadweard Muybridge, photographer


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Repetition/Variation in Music

Small-scale repetition creates a sense of pulse, rhythm and meter

Motific repetition is used to build phrases

Repetition of group of notes is a pattern called an ostinato

Large-scale repetition creates FORM


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an idea returns after contrasting sections

phrases repeated immediately

within the phrase


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Some repetition in music

PHILIP GLASS

EINSTEIN ON THE BEACH

(an opera)


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CAILLEBOTTE, GustaveParis: A Rainy D ay, 1877, Oil on canvas, 83 1/2 x 108 3/4"


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Mozart Symphony No. 40 in G minor,1ST movement

The motif is immediately repeated and varied – the music is built with this motif (aka motive)

This section of music will return a minute later and then a couple of minutes later – large-scale, sectional repetition


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Mozart Symphony No. 40 in G minor,1ST movement


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Mozart Symphony No. 40 in G minor,3rd movement

  • each section is repeated

  • the first 2 sections return after a contrasting section

  • General form (design) is ABA

  • Specifically, it is aabbccddab (does anyone listen that way?)

  • Based on dance music, but it is not dance music

  • triple meter


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Mozart Symphony No. 40 in G minor,3rd movement

Melodic shapes and evolution; rhythmic patterns


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CONTRAST


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Thelonious Monk, Epistrophy

c. 1948, recorded 1957-58. (From the CD Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane. A photograph of Thelonious Monk, with a stupid caption, appears on p. 23 of the textbook.)

This example demonstrates

repetition at three levels

“statement, departure, return” at multiple levels

contour

sequence


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FORM

The simplest form is unvaried repetition: AAAA . . .

A complete lack of repetition creates a complex form:

ABCDEFGHI . . .

But many forms depend on the sense of STATEMENT, DEPARTURE and RETURN:

ABA


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Song Forms

Verse-refrain (ABABAB) . . . - Ex. The Jovial Tradesmen

AABA – very standard. Actually, it is ababCab;verse-refrain-verse-refrain-bridge-verse-refrain(“refrain” is also known as “chorus”).The statement-departure-return (or statement-contrast) structureworks at two different levels, abab and the larger AABA.

The text varies (usually) only on the verse:text: v1 – r – v2 – r – bridge – v3 – r

music: a – b – a – b – bridge – a – b


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Earth, Wind & Fire, Fantasy (1977)

Maurice White, Eddie del Barrio & Verdine White

Every man has a place, in his heart there's a space,

and the world can't erase his fantasies

Take a ride in the sky, on our ship fantasii

all your dreams will come true, right away

And we will live together, until the twelfth of never

our voices will ring forever, as one

Every thought is a dream, rushing by in a stream,

bringing life to our kingdom of doing

Take a ride in the sky, on our ship fantasii

all your dreams will come true, miles away

Our voices will ring together until the twelfth of never,

we all, will live forever, as one


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Earth, Wind & Fire, Fantasy (1977)

Come to see, victory, in the land called fantasy

loving life, a new decree,

bring your mind to everlasting liberty

Come to see, victory in a land called fantasy,

loving life, for you and me, to behold, to your soul is ecstasy

You will find, other kind, that has been in search for you,

many lives has brought you to

recognize it's your life, now in review

and as you stay for the play, fantasy, has in store for you,

a glowing light will see you through

It's your day, shining day, all your dreams come true

As you glide, in your stride with the wind, as you fly away

give a smile, from your lips, and say

I am free, yes I'm free, now I'm on my way

Come to see, victory in a land called fantasy,

loving life, . . . now in review


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MUSICAL FORM: So what?

Expectations confirmed:

SATISFACTION!

(clichéd, boring, too predictable)

Expectations denied:

EXPRESSION!

(meaningless, wrong, incompetent)


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Other Forms

We will encounter many types of forms such as:

Variation – A A’A’’A’’’ . . .Binary – AABBRondo – ABACA Sonata – intro-A-B-A-B-dev-A-B’-coda

and an entire zoo of forms perhaps not entirely worth cataloging.


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CONTRAST IN MUSIC

Mozart -- first movement from Symphony No. 35 in D Major, K. 385, "Haffner" LOW/HIGH (contrast in register)

LONG/SHORT

Contrast in timbre (sound color):

Bach, Brandenburg Concerto No. 2

(also contrast in dynamics – loud and soft)


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BALANCE

BALANCE

asymmetry

symmetry

E Q U I L I B R I U M


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Assymetical balancein music?

A concerto sets a soloist or small group of soloists “against” an orchestra


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EMPHASIS

accent


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limitation of a composition to a few essential elements; usually a voluntary constraint that is part of the creative process

SPECIFIC TO AN INDIVIDUAL WORK, NOT THE GENRE , TYPE OR MEDIUM

ECONOMY

Examples in music: deriving everything from a single theme (musical idea), limiting the number of pitches, type of instrument, etc.

Steve Reich, Music for Pieces of Wood, Clapping Music, or other pieces

DC Meckler, Bliss (1999)

Morton Feldman, Three Voices (1982)


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ECONOMY – very little suggests a lot

Picasso, Femme


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PROPORTION

PROPORTION

PROPORTION


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Shahn, Ben, Vacant Lot, 1939Watercolor and gouache on paper mounted on plywood panel, 19 x 23 in


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Proportion in music

A matter of time, usually lots of time.

Example: 3 Beethoven string quartets (Op 59, 1, 2 & 3). Each in 4 movements.

No. 1 – BIG 1st mvt

No. 2 – nervous 1st mvt, BIG 2nd mvt

No. 3 – BIG finale (4th mvt)


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SCALE

SCALE - the size of a work compared to the environment: miniature, human, monumental. The term can also apply to musical works, although it has an entirely different meaning than “musical scale.” (“A symphony is a large-scale musical work when compared to a song.”)


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Claes Oldenburg, Knife Ship I, 1985

Vinyl-covered wood, steel, and aluminum with motors, dimensions variable, maximum height 31 feet 8 inches x 40 feet 5 inches x 31 feet 6 inches.


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Miniature

Leaf from Futuh al-Haramain (Description of the Two Holy Cities of Mecca and Medina), mid-16th century; Ottoman, 8x5 in.


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a bit bigger . . .


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Some examples of time scales in music

Less than a minute - Miniatures – Chopin, Webern, Schoenberg

Pop songs – 3-6 minutes

Early symphonies – 25-35 minutes

Later symphonies – 45 min - 1 hr

Longest – Mahler – 1 ½ hrs

Short opera – 2 hours

Average opera – 3-4 hours (including intermissions)

Long opera – 5 hours

Longest traditional opera – Wagner’s RING – 18 hours


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Some

PRINCIPLES OF DESIGN

REPETITION VARIATIONCONTRAST

BALANCE – symmetry/asymmetry

EMPHASIS - accent

ECONOMY

PROPORTION

SCALE


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Monk, Epistrophyrepetition at three levels

a a b b a'a'b'b' a'a'b'b' a a b b c c' c'' d d' a'a'b'b'

(The little mark indicates some degree of variation.)

Three levels of repetition:

small-scale (motific) – aa

phrase level – a a b b compared to a'a'b'b'

sectional – the return of the a'a'b'b' after the bridge (c c' c'' d d')


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Monk, Epistrophy“statement, departure, return”

– STATEMENT: a a b b

DEPARTURE: a'a'b'b' a'a'b'b'

RETURN: a a b b

– STATEMENT: a a b b a'a'b'b' a'a'b'b' a a b b

DEPARTURE: c c' c'' d d'

RETURN: a'a'b'b'

(complete structure: AA’A’ABA’)

– STATEMENT: AA’A’ABA’

DEPARTURE: solos –

RETURN: AA’A’ABA’ A [ending]


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Monk, Epistrophycontour and sequence

contour – melodic analog of shape in art

– a rises

– b rises and falls

sequence – repeating a pattern up or down a scale step or series of steps

– d d’


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Louis Andriessen, De Staat, (The State, 1973-1976)

Contrast in timbre (sound color):

DOUBLE REEDS/BRASS/VOICES+PIANO

(double reeds = woodwind instruments: oboe, English horn, bassoon)


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VARIATION:the alliance between repetition and surprise

The extensive poem, moreover, satisfies another two-fold requirement, one that is closely related to the rule of variety within unity: repetition and surprise. Repetition is a cardinal principal in poetry. Meter and its accents, rhyme, the epithets in Homer and other poets, phrases and incidents that recur like musical motifs and serve as signs to emphasize continuity. At the other extreme are breaks, changes, inventions - in a word, the unexpected. What we call development is merely the alliance between repetition and surprise, recurrence and invention, continuity and interruption.

Octavio Paz, “Telling and Singing” in The Other Voice


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CONTRAST IN MUSIC

Mozart -- first movement from Symphony No. 35 in D Major, K. 385, "Haffner" LOW/HIGH (contrast in register)

LONG/SHORT

Contrast in timbre (sound color):

Bach, Brandenburg Concerto No. 2

(also contrast in dynamics – loud and soft)


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