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Nocturne I composed

Posted By: caters

Nocturne I composed - 02/21/19 05:15 AM

Here is a nocturne that I composed. I thought of every theme and have gotten feedback that I should have written it in 3/4 instead of 4/4. Here are the themes:

A --- Beginning theme in Bb
B --- Modulating from and back to Bb
C --- Modulating to or suddenly shifting to Bb minor
D --- Long modulation back to Bb major

And here are the primary ways in which I varied the themes:

Octave up or down
Melody in octaves

I have also gotten feedback that it is too rooted in the tempo which is surprising to me because I have ritardandos in there. For the modulations to and from Bb minor, I use the 2:3 polyrhythm of a hemiola to add more drama to an already dramatic section.

Here is the video of my nocturne:


What do you think of the nocturne that I composed?
Posted By: Steve Chandler

Re: Nocturne I composed - 02/26/19 03:49 PM

Hi caters,

Can I presume this is one of your first pieces (I now see it's Op 1 no 1)? And you've composed seven minutes of music. Unfortunately, the rigid playback does your piece no favors. I'll try to take that into account and offer constructive criticism. I've listened to the first minute (edit on a second try I made it to the end). The broken chord accompaniment was driving me crazy (still does). The harmony is very simple and diatonic (except in the hemiola section). The melody may have some promise, but please take out the long trill. You haven't challenged your creativity in this piece. This is a student work. I appreciate the courage it took to post this and the work you put into creating it, but you need to try harder to create memorable music. Your melody is basically an embellished scale from tonic to dominant that then continues down to tonic. Is that really what you heard in your head? At its most basic level composing is music dictation from the mind and then improving the result. This piece sounds like you sketched a basic idea and did nothing to make it more interesting and/or memorable. Your sections are all too much of one thing. The hemiola section was okay at first, but went too long without doing something to it to keep my interest up (rhythmic variation, melodic sequencing) and it just outlined your harmony.

My suggestion would be to start writing shorter pieces and working hard to make them express much more in less time. Think Chopin Prelude in c minor. That piece speaks volumes in just 13 bars. Composing is a lifelong education, you've just started. Posting your pieces for public comment takes guts, congratulations on that. It seems you've believed friends and family when they told you it's wonderful. Friends and family will always say that. I hope you understand I'm doing you a favor of telling you truth. I'm trying to be kind and encouraging, but I also have to be honest. This is not your Opus 1, it's a first attempt. Keep trying, you can get there, but learn to be your own worst critic. I tell young composers to make their musical ideas win their hearts through the hard work of making them as good as they can be.

Good luck!
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