June 2014

Summer Composition Camp at Illinois Wesleyan!

June 16, 2014 22:17

Today was my first (official) day at composition camp, and I learned a lot! Dr. Pelusi even showed us one of his string quartets to talk about bowing and articulation. Our project, due Thursday at 10pm, is to write a trio for flute, cello, and piano, developing motives and written in three sections, one contrasting the others. I think I'm doing okay so far... It's kind of a cross between Debussy and maybe even Stravinsky, especially if I darken the middle section a little more. I composed my pencil and paper outside, then typed it into my computer in the evening. It sounded like cicadas and summery, so it was cool! I here crickets chirping out my window as O type this... Anyways, composing in my dorm at 12am is fantastic! Too bad I didn't bring my violin... I would annoy a lot of people if I were practicing then... Speaking of which, I hope when I get home to play the flute part on the violin, since both instruments are fairly comparable with each other. :)

I'm also excited for Thursday, when we'll be discussin film scoring! He's made a lot of references to John Williams already; he's copied down and worked with Williams in the past. He says the best way to learn a technique is to literally, by hand, copy a score. I'll have to try that...


Anyways, that's all for now. I'll be able to get back to practicing violin as early as Saturday evening, since that's when I'll be coming home. It already seems like I've been here forever, yet I've only been one day... I kind of don't want to go back home, actually, but oh well.

I also watched Brave today during a break between composing sessions. The score was composed by Patrick Doyle (Goblet of Fire)! :)

Probably should be getting to sleep now. Bye!

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Cinematic Concert Pieces

June 10, 2014 20:06

Albeit I still intend to make an actual film (if possible) sometime this summer, while I'm waiting for the busier half of my summer to end, I thought it'd be nice to work on some other compositions - how about writing concert cinematic music?

In 2012, when I was obsessed with Doctor Who, I wrote a novel called "Doctor Who: Titanic II". It stars the Doctor, on a ship called the Titanic II, traveling the waters of the planet Aquarium, as well as a friendly cast of colorful characters like Rebecca, a young fourteen-year-old girl, her friend Hugh, Captain Paris, the captain and owner of the ship, Jeff and Anna, Rebecca's parents, and Genji and Zhong, another couple. Of course, it also contains aliens: I put in mutated sea monsters and Hot Lava Monsters within the story. Basically, as you might imagine, the Titanic II eventually starts sinking, and the Doctor has to save everyone before it's too late. You can read the entire novel for yourself here. I spent a lot of time on it, and I think it turned out great! :)

So as a side project throughout the summer, I am going to be writing a suite of orchestral music that depicts several events from the story, as well as possible character themes. Tonight, I created the section called "Floor 99" when the Doctor climbs to the top of the ship in Chapter 3, and it accents the few different ideas from that section of the story, even though it's a quick opening. In any case, what do you think about the idea of writing cinematic music without any actual picture?

I already sort of did this, actually, as well. Tchaikovsky wrote an orchestral piece called "Romeo and Juliet", which basically told the story of Shakespeare's play. I was inspired to do a similar thing in April, so I wrote a violin concerto called "Little Snow-White", after the Grimm Fairy Tale. (I may have mentioned this before, actually...) I just completed the piano accompaniment part, so sometime within this year I'll have to write a full orchestra (and cinematic) experience, and obviously, continue to practice the piece every day. Hopefully writing concert pieces with cinema in mind can help me think with a story as the template - this will certainly help me when I'm actually scoring a film at any point in the future.

So yeah! I think that's about it. Next week I'm going to a composition camp at Illinois Wesleyan, so I'm very excited! :)

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More entries: May 2014

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