Friday, August 30, 2013

The Elements of Music

We will continue to listen to very different kinds of sounds while we study the nine elements of music: - tempo - beat - meter - rhythm - melody - harmony - dynamics - timbre - form
Memorize this list, be able to define these words, and be able to give an example.
Here is a slideshare to help you:

Mr. Kozak

Is that Music? Berio's Sequenza for Voice


We listened to some audio that you might not have thought was music. Remember the Sequenza for Voice by Berio? Click the orange play button to listen to this 30-second sample:

Wednesday, August 28, 2013



Since we have studied movie themes, it is time for you to compose your own leitmotif. 

In the Oxford dictionary, it states that a leitmotif is:

‘a recurrent theme throughout a musical or literary composition, associated with a particular person, idea, or situation’.

That's right, you have to compose a leitmotif that is associated with you. You only have to play it, not notate it, but there are some examples bellow.

Rubric coming very soon...

For now, here is here is Princess Leia's leitmotif:

and here is Obi Wan Kenobi's leitmotif:

America - West Side Story - NOT a Hemiola


Like the wikipedia article says, the song 'America' by Leonard Bernstein from the musical West Side Story is NOT a hemiola. That is when you play a simple and compound meter at the same time, like this:
In the case of 'America', simple and compound meter alternates bars of 6/8 and bars of 3/4:
Next class, we will all perform a hemiola using our knees. With our right hand, we will accent simple time and with our left hand we will accent compound time.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Imperial March played by The Vancouver Symphony


Here is the Vancouver Symphony (being conducted by Bramwell Tovey) playing the famous Imperial March from the movie Star Wars, composed by one of the most famous and prolific film composers, John Williams.

This "Darth Vader theme" is an excellent example of how a composer can use music to make the character more real - Darth Vader not just looks evil with the black robot helmet and cape, but sounds evil, powerful, and destructive.

Power is provided by a symphony orchestra - one hundred musicians playing forte
Evil-sounding - the minor key of the piece sounds ominous and dark

There is no question, Darth Vader is a bad guy. Just in case you've never seen the very first, original Star Wars (1977), here is a great montage of Darth Vader using the Imperial March.

What is improvisation?


We talked about what improvisation is (and what it isn't) and listed some examples (like cooking without a recipe, moments in sports without using a play, (comedy skits made up on the fly) and we watched Gabriela Montero make up a new song on the spot.

After that we watched Dave Morris talk about how to teach improvisation. Remember the rules:
- You must be willing to play!
- You must be willing to fail!
- Failing does not make you a failure!
- Say 'yes'!
- Say 'and'!
- Play the game!
- Relax and have fun!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Music and Emotions


Please finish your homework for next class. You have to define those emotion words and add a song sample. Don't forget the composer's name.

Mr. Kozak