Special Instrumental Effects

There are four components to the paper. Here is what to do:

Do some research about every piece and write a few paragraphs (full sentences) about each one. Included in your paragraph should be some information about the composer. If you can not find specific information about the piece, you only need to write about the composer.

Using information that is not your own requires you to cite your sources, therefore:

You MUST include a Works Cited page/Bibliography to properly cite your research sources. If you fail to include this information, you will receive a grade of zero.

Describe what you thought were the most important elements in each piece. Give your overall impression of each piece and/or the performance/performers. Think about and answer some of the questions below. You should have a paragraph or two for each piece. Think about things I asked on the discussion board this semester. You may want to consider some of the same questions.

You must also write about your listening experience. What were your expectations for the pieces? Did they meet, exceed, or fall short of your expectations? Did the pieces relate to what we heard in class?  Be specific and back your statements up with facts or reasons.
The following is a list of questions to consider when thinking about what is important about the music. It is by no means comprehensive, nor is not a checklist of questions that you must answer.

Melody-describe the melody. Was it long, short, memorable, jagged, sad, stepwise, joyous, ornamented, ponderous, heavy, etc? Was there more than one main melody? Does the main melody return?  What was the mood?

Harmony-was the piece tonal or atonal? Did the composer use triads/7th chords in a functional manner or were they non-functioning? Was the work exceedingly dissonant?

Rhythm-yes, this word has a correct spelling.  What was the meter? Did the meter change?  What was the tempo? Did the tempo change?  Was the pulse(s) easy or difficult to identify? Describe the effect of the meter/rhythms on the flow of the music.

Timbre-what was the instrumentation of the ensemble? (If the ensemble is standard, such as band or orchestra, you do not need to list every instrument).

Articulation-was the music staccato, marcato, legato, ponticello, sul tasto, etc?  Were special instrumental effects employed? What effect did they have on how you heard the music?

Form-was there a discernable form? Remember that repetition will help to define form, so listen for repetition. Don’t guess.

Style-Remember that how the elements are balanced defines musical style. When was the piece composed? Does the piece fit with a certain musical style or genre, or does it go against convention?

Texture-was the music homophonic or contrapuntal? What about the instrumentation-were there many parts doubled, or was each instrument on its own? Was the texture consistent throughout or constantly changing? Is there a clear difference between melody and accompaniment?

Text-if the music had text, was the music appropriate for the mood of the text? Describe the text? Did the text have a poetic form? Did dramatic moments in the text correspond to dramatic elements in the music?

Speed and Volume-unless a piece is all either really loud or really soft, tread lightly when discussing dynamics.  Always consider what effect the dynamics have on our perception of the music. A giant crescendo will likely introduce a large element of drama in the music or serve to articulate an important formal moment. Consider this, rather than describing that “the horns got loud

Other-did you like or dislike the music you heard? WHY? Which elements seemed more important than others?  Discuss the overall mood of the piece. If there were new compositions on the program, how did they relate to other works performed? Did the program notes (if any) influence or aid your hearing of the works? Describe interesting aspects of the performance space, if any. Did anything unusual happen during the performance-good or bad? Did you feel the performers did a good job-keeping in mind college ensembles are not professionals. Was there a conductor, and did the music correspond to his/her gestures? Was there any interaction between performers? What was your overall impression of the concerts? Was this a new experience for you? What did you learn from your experience?


Cite any and all sources using footnotes, including websites.  Wikipedia is a valuable source of information, but not always reliable. Plagiarism is a serious offense, and you may face disciplinary action from the college if you are found to have not accurately cited your sources.
Richard Danielpour–Voice of the City

Florence Price–Adoration

Anna Thorvoldsdottir–Fields

Asha Srinivisan-Dviraag

Caroline Shaw-Passacaglia from Partita
Samuel Coleridge Taylor- Hiawatha Overture

John Luther Adams-Drums of Winter

Jason Becker-End of the Beginning

Dave Matthews Band-All Along the Watchtower

Mozart-Leck mich im Arsch
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S9MN2WeqFY8    For more information on special instrumental effects check on this:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instrument_effect

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