Author Topic: If you were (or are) a composer, what kind of works would you write?  (Read 3875 times)

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Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
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Re: If you were (or are) a composer, what kind of works would you write?
« Reply #80 on: September 30, 2021, 07:05:14 PM »
Just heard your Symphony No. 1, Op. 143, Karl. Let me tell you I found the musical discourse coherent and appealing. The use of the xylophony and vibraphone was very cool, and that very feature somehow was perceived for my ears throughout. Thanks for sharing your creations with us! Keep on composing and playing!  :)

I am highly gratified, my friend, thank you!
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Offline k a rl h e nn i ng

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  • Posts: 61624
  • Et quid amabo nisi quod ænigma est?
    • Henningmusick
  • Location: Boston, Mass.
  • Currently Listening to:
    Shostakovich, D. Scarlattii, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Liszt, Martinů, Haydn, Henning
Re: If you were (or are) a composer, what kind of works would you write?
« Reply #81 on: September 30, 2021, 07:06:30 PM »
I've held off on answering here because, as much as I previously viewed myself as a composer, I haven't had any musical ideas or any particular urge to write a piece of music in a very long time, and that phase of my life may be over for good. I've also seen with it a general narrowing of my musical horizons: I listen to little except whatever the current musical obsession is (at the moment Schubert, Bruckner, Brahms and Reger) or a handful of established favourites (at the moment Haydn, Mozart, Dvořák, Medtner and Martinů) and these phases also go on for several months.

One thing I will say is that it is not exceptionally difficult to learn how to translate ideas one has in one's head into music notation. The difficulty lies chiefly in the nature of human memory, and the fact that as much as you might think you're hearing a complete piece in your head, chances are your inner ear is mostly hitting the plot beats, as it were, and leaving out some of the transitional passages; at very least this was often the case for me when I was studying, and I mostly had to focus on learning ways to let the material suggest its own continuations where necessary. (The actual music notation stuff wasn't difficult for me, but I understand it is difficult for some people. Those for whom it is too much of an obstacle may prefer to work with a DAW, which are somewhat easier to use for a non-music reader.) I still have dozens of pieces that I started or in some cases nearly completed in approximately 2005 thru 2014 of which I can still call up the general shape of the necessary completion & the beats the music has to hit, but have never bothered to put in the work to figure it out on paper.

Basically, if anyone is interested in writing a piece of music, it's not too difficult to learn the technical side (notation or digital audio), and the main obstacles will be either psychological/memory-related (if you' have to stick to the exact details of an outline & demand each note be in its proper place) or stylistic/material-related (if you're willing to let the process of writing out the music be part of the discovery of the music in itself).

Very interesting. Thanks for posting.
Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot