For Wednesday, December 1, 2004:
Study the score of, and listen to the CD of, Robert Owens's "Fields of Wonder" for tenor and string orchestra. The materials are on reserve in the Arts Media Center under the name "Taylor". Analyze the harmonies and voicings in particular on the first page and the last two pages. Observe the harmonies and the orchestral textures throughout the piece. Come to class with ideas and questions about the piece that you would like to discuss with the composer.
For Monday, November 29, 2004:
Complete any parts that you need to prepare for the rehearsals of your composition. Plan rehearsal times with your performers.
Friday, November 26, 2004:
Thanksgiving break. No class.
For Wednesday, November 24, 2004:
Hand in a copy of your completed score for your final composition.
For Monday, November 22, 2004:
Be ready to perform rhythm #81 on page 101 of the course reader and rhythm #83 on page 102, singing the notated rhythm while either tapping the beat or conducting the beat.
Analyze the harmonic progression of the first eleven measures of the Tristan Prelude.
For Friday, November 19, 2004:
Sing all the intervals of a third up and down in all major keys and all minor keys (with no chromatic alterations of the natural minor scale), saying the note names and the type of third as you go. For example, in G minor: G-Bb-minor-3rd, A-C-minor-3rd, Bb-D-major-3rd, etc.
Study and analyze the first 10 bars of Ko-Ko by Duke Ellington on pages 34-35 of your course reader. Analyze it on two structural levels: the structural harmony on the measure-to-measure level (or, more specifically, on the every-two-measures level) and the specific harmonies on the beat-to-beat level. Use what you know of jazz chord types and nomenclature to identify each chord's root and type, and also hypothesize what the chord functions are in terms of classical functional harmonic theory. Because there is limited space on the score, you should do your analysis on a separate piece of paper. In addition to the chord symbols, Roman numerals, etc., write a one-paragraph description of what you think are the most essential ideas being expressed in the harmony and voice-leading. Write another brief paragraph describing the rhythmic interaction between the instruments.
For Wednesday, November 17, 2004:
Hand in a xerox copy of your completed composition. It need not be the final neatly copied version, but it should be a legible draft of an essentially completed piece.
For Monday, November 15, 2004:
Be ready to perform any of the melodies and rhythms on the sheet that was handed out in the previous Friday class session.
For Wednesday, November 10, 2004:
Continue working on all of the assignments that were listed for Monday November 8.
Practice rhythm No. 60 on page 95 of the course reader, and be prepared to perform it in class.
For Monday, November 8, 2004:
Keeping a steady tempo, perform all of the beat divisions up to 8: 1 quarter, 2 eighths, 3 triplet eighths, 4 sixteenths, 5 quintuplet sixteenths, 6 sextuplet sixteenths, 7 septuplet sixteenths, 8 thrity-seconds. Compose a short rhythm for yourself (you need not turn it in) eight or more beats long that puts all of these divisions in a scrambled order that forces you to confront a variety of juxtapositions of divisions. Practice that rhythm until you can perform it accurately.
Practice the rhythm from the midterm musicianship exam, and be ready to perform it accurately in class.
For Friday, November 5, 2004:
Practice playing the following chord progressions at the keyboard, using four-voice harmony and good voice-leading rules, in EVERY major and minor key: I-V-I (i-V-i in minor), I-IV-V-I (i-iv-V-i in minor), and I-IV-V7-I (i-iv-V7-i in minor). Of course, this is also a good opportunity to continue to practice singing arpeggiations of these chord progressions; you can sing arpeggiations of the chords as you play them, to reinforce your ability to spell the chords quickly.
For Wednesday, November 3, 2004:
Hand in a xerox copy of your work in progress on your composition project, which by this point should look pretty much like a "half-done" composition. At the least, it should have a very detailed presentation, in score form, of the structure of the piece, the chord progressions at nearly every part of the piece, the important melodies with as much of the supporting accompaniment and/or contrapuntal lines as possible, and some fully composed passages that demonstrate the character of the piece. Where there are gaps or unknowns, their boundaries should be clearly defined and described. (For example, "I haven't composed this next section yet, but I know that it's going to be eight bars long, a transitional passage in which the violin and cello play a duet that makes the modulation from Ab major to F minor--probably by emphasizing the F minor and Bb minor harmonies, eventually altering the root of an Eb7 chord so that it becomes an Edim7 chord--to get to the repeat of the opening section.") There must be enough completely composed passages (and/or very thoroughly detailed sketches of passages) to show real progress toward a completed movement.
Monday, November 1, 2004:
Midterm exam in rooms 211 and 316. You only need to come for your individual assigned time slot, but you must be on time for that.
For Friday, October 29, 2004:
Study chapters 24 and 26 of the textbook. Listen to or play on the piano all of the examples.
Copy exercises C.1 and C.2 from page 112 of the course reader, and fill in the appropriate alto and tenor voices. In the first inversion chords, in most cases it is preferable to double the root of the chord, next most preferred is the fifth, next the third. Use the smoothest voice leading possible. In some cases, however, especially with consecutive first inversion chords, one voice may need to leap a fourth or fifth.
Practice singing all of the exercises, melodies, rhythms, and piano chord progressions assigned up to this point, in preparation for the midterm exam.
For Wednesday, October 27, 2004:
Sing the up-down interval drill (leaping from the tonic to each other degree of the scale) in major scales up to three flats and sharps, putting in lower semitone neighboring tones on each degree of the scale, and then again putting in upper semitone neighboring tones on each degree of the scale. Sing the note names as you go. For example: Eb-F-E-F, Eb-G-F#-G, Eb-Ab-G-Ab, Eb-Bb-A-Bb, Eb-C-B-C, Eb-D-C#-D, Eb-Eb-D-Eb; Eb-D-C#-D, Eb-C-B-C, Eb-Bb-A-Bb, Eb-Ab-G-Ab, Eb-G-F#-G, Eb-F-E-F, Eb-Eb-D-Eb, and then Eb-F-Gb-F, Eb-G-Ab-G, Eb-Ab-Bbb-Ab, Eb-Bb-Cb-Bb, Eb-C-Db-C, Eb-D-Eb-D, Eb-Eb-Fb-Eb; Eb-D-Eb-D, Eb-C-Db-D, Eb-Bb-Cb-Bb, Eb-Ab-Bbb-Ab, Eb-G-Ab-G, Eb-F-Gb-F, Eb-Eb-Fb-Eb.
Choose any major key with at least two flats or sharps. Figure out what are the possible borrowed chords from the parallel minor key. Compose five very brief chord progressions in that key (four to six chords each) in four-part chorale style, with most if not all chords in root position, and in each one include one or more borrowed chords in a way that sounds smooth and interesting. Pay attention to all the usual rules of good voice leading, and also pay attention to (in general) avoiding any awkward intervals such as augmented seconds. Do five such chord progressions, with a total of at least five different borrowed chords. (Do more than five chord progressions if you want to, of course.)
For Monday, October 25, 2004:
Hand in a very detailed design for the formal structure of your composition project. Your formal design could be in the form of a written prose description, but is probably better presented as a (large and detailed) schematic diagram. How long will your piece be? In what meter? In what tempo? How many measures? In what key will it start/end? To what keys will it go (and when)? Will it have discernable sections? What will be the sectional structure? What will be the predominant "texture (homophonic, polyphonic, etc.)? Which instrument will be most prominent (or even solo) at which times? At what moments will certain instruments be clearly "teamed" together in contrast to others? Any particular harmonic ideas, progressions, etc. that you want to be characteristic? Any melodic motives you know you want to use? Etc. This will be the outline that guides your entire composition process, so give it careful and detailed attention.
Other assignment(s) might be given in Friday's class.
For Friday, October 22, 2004:
Assignment given in Wednesday's class.
For Wednesday, October 20, 2004:
Sing rhythm 92 on the top of page 108, tapping the beat.
Sing rhythm 77 on the top of page 100, tapping the beat. After you have mastered this, learn to sing the rhythm while correctly conducting the meter.
For Monday, October 18, 2004:
Complete the exercises on page 142 of the course reader. (Make a xerox of the page and fill in the missing voices, to hand in.)
Analyze the chord types and harmonic function of all of the harmonies in measures 1-21 of Mozart's Symphony No. 40, Mvt. I, found on pages 58-59 of the course packet. Make a xerox copy of those pages, write in the roman numeral chord analysis, and identify any non-chord tones. (Note: Horns in Bb and G, Clarinets in Bb.)
Sing the new interval drill up and down in all major keys up to four flats and sharps. For example: E-F#-Major 2nd, E-G#-Major 3rd, E-A-Perfect 4th, ..., E-E-Perfect Octave, E-D#-Minor 2nd, E-C#-Minor 3rd, E-B-Perfect 4th, ..., E-E-Perfect Octave.
For Friday, October 15, 2004:
Hand in a paper containing a) your name, b) your proposed instrumentation of your composition, and c) your preferred performers, if known.
While tapping the beat (either half note or quarter note, depending on the time signature), sing the rhythm #92 at the top of page 108 in the course packet.
Perform the rhythm at the top of page 99 (top voice) while tapping the beat.
Be able to sing all the triads in all major keys, saying the chord types.
Be prepared to perform ANY of the musicianship exercises assigned so far.
You can now see the professor's answers for the assignment of Monday October 11 (Exercise 22.4 in the workbook for "The Complete Musician") online. [Note that inversions requiring two Arabic numerals are written a little strangely, just 'cause it's too much effort to try to format them correctly for the web. For example, a tonic chord in second inversion is written "I64".]
For Wednesday, October 13, 2004:
Using the chord progression I - IV - V7/V - V7 - I as the harmonic basis, one chord per beat, write as many examples as you can of correct two-part counterpoint. The chord progression should be in 3/4 time, should begin on the third beat of the measure and end on the downbeat of a measure. The actual counterpoints may be in any rhythm, and the chords may be in any inversion (although second inversion is not so good in this context). Any non-chord tones you use must be used properly and identified. Choose any key other than C major, and write all your counterpoints in that key.
While tapping the beat, sing the rhythms in the upper (big note) part of the exercises on pages 92 (top of page only), 93 (whole page), and 107 (top of page only) of the course packet.
Sing the alto clef melodies on pp. 80-82 of the course packet: numbers 421, 422, and 431.
For Monday, October 11, 2004:
Do all of section 22.4 of the workbook for the textbook "The Complete Musician".
Sing an arpeggiated version of all the triads in the major keys of C, G, D, A, E, F, Bb, Eb, and Ab, and name the scale degree and chord type. (This is a new drill.) For example: E-G#-B-G#-E, I major, F#-A-C#-A-F#, ii minor, etc. all the way up to I again.
Perform the cross-rhythms 4:3, 3:4, 2:3, 3:2 in two different ways: a) tapping the beat and singing the cross-rhythm, and b) tapping the beat in one hand and the cross-rhythm in the other hand.
For Friday, October 8, 2004:
Xerox page 144 of the course reader, and do a (roman numeral) harmonic analysis of that chord progession
Xerox page 5 of the course reader. On that page, write in, using letters and Arabic numerals, all the intervals that occur between the lower voice and the upper voice (for example, P5, m3, M9, etc.). Reduce all intervals by an octave (or even two octaves) as necessary so that you don't write any interval greater than a 9th.
For Wednesday, October 6, 2004:
Xerox pages 1 and 2 of the course reader, and do a (roman numeral) harmonic analysis of the Bach Prelude No. 1 on those pages, finishing what was begun in class. On a separate piece of paper, see if you can sketch a larger-scale (i.e. zoomed out) analysis of the harmonic structure at a higher structural level.
Continue working on all previously assigned musicianship exercises.
For Monday, October 4, 2004:
Study the pieces on pages 3 and 55 of the course packet, and be able to sing the entire parts in both the bass and treble clef of each piece, singing the numbers of the scale degrees. (In places where the pieces modulate, you'll need to decide where the modulation occurs in order to sing the correct scale degree.)
Play a four-voice I-IV-V-I chord progression in the major keys of C, G, D, A, E, F, Bb, Eb, and Ab, and the minor keys of a, d, g, c, e, b, and b, f#, using proper voice leading as discussed in class. In each key, try playing the progression three times successively with the root, third, and fifth of the chord in the soprano voice of the starting tonic chord.
Complete exercises C.1 and C.2 from page 111 of your course packet, in two versions: one with no non-chord tones, and one with passing tones, neighboring tones, and/or suspensions (at your discretion). Beware of introducing parallelisms with non-chord tones.
Do a roman numeral harmonic analysis of the sonata on page 55 of the reader. You can make a Xerox of page 55 (or a Xerox of page 145) to do this analysis.
For Friday, October 1, 2004:
Sing the minor scale drill (singing the full note names and scale degree numbers) in the natural minor keys of a, d, g, c, e, b, and f#.
Sing an up-down arpeggiation of the chord progression I-V-I in all the major keys, singing the note names as you go. For example: Eb-G-Bb-Eb-Bb-G-Eb---Bb-D-F-Bb-F-D-Bb---Eb-G-Bb-Eb-Bb-G-Eb.
Sing an arpeggiated version of a i-V-i progression in the (harmonic) minor keys of a, d, g, c, e, b, and f#, naming the notes as you sing. For example: F#-A-C#-F#-C#-A-F#---C#-E#-G#-C#-G#-E#-C#---F#-A-C#-F#-C#-A-F#.
On the piano, using four-voice harmony, root position chords, and correct voice leading as described in class, play the chord progression I-V-I in all the major keys. In each key, try playing the progression three times successively with the root, third, and fifth of the chord in the soprano voice of the starting tonic chord.
Sing the rhythms handed out in class (all possible attack patterns of triplets and sixteenth notes) while tapping the beat. Sing the upper and lower rhythms independently, and then sing the two parts together ascribing a different pitch to each voice.
For Wednesday, September 29, 2004:
Sing the major scale drill (singing the full note names and scale degree numbers) in all keys.
Sing an up-down arpeggiation of the chord progression I-V-I in the major keys of C, G, D, A, F, Bb, and Eb, singing the note names as you go. For example: Eb-G-Bb-Eb-Bb-G-Eb---Bb-D-F-Bb-F-D-Bb---Eb-G-Bb-Eb-Bb-G-Eb.
On the piano, using four-voice harmony, root position chords, and correct voice leading as described in class, play the chord progression I-V-I in the major keys of C, G, D, A, F, Bb, and Eb. In each key, try playing the progression three times successively with the root, third, and fifth of the chord in the soprano voice of the starting tonic chord. (I suggest using close position, with the top three voices played by the right hand, and the bass played by the left hand.)
Compose and sing a rhythm at least 8 beats long, using each of the 8 possible attack-point patterns of triplet eighth notes at least once.
For Monday, September 27, 2004:
Purchase the textbooks.
Sing the major scale drill (singing the full note names and scale degree numbers) in the keys of C, G, D, A, F, Bb, and Eb.
Compose and sing a rhythm at least 16 beats long, using each of the 16 possible attack-point patterns of sixteenth notes at least once.