Everyone worked very hard this week – lots of new notes and much concentration. Well done.
We tackled the following:
Elgar: Pages 45-59. Sang through then did some ‘analysis’ of the music to demonstrate that there are 4 main chunks of material which repeat. Each repeat is either exact or a bit varied and closely related. Recognising this makes for quicker progress. They are:
- 1) Page 46 – The ‘Thrilling motif’ which consists of a repeated falling semitone pattern (4 notes) shared between T/B then A/T/B. The other appearances of this pattern (varied a bit) are at: p47 bottom, p50 (fig 59), p54 bottom, p58 (fig67)
- Chromatic lines (semitones) – Longer melodic lines which move mostly in semitones: p48 A/B, p49 T/B climbing passage, p52 last bar to 54 T/B
- Perfect 4ths – Starts in sopranos on p48 (fig 57) and is developed bottom of page, again p52 bottom (same but higher). The interval of a 4th is a feature in many places.
- Music makers theme – The opening passage of the whole work returns on p50 (fig 60), same rhythm (in augmentation!!) but varied melody. Again p55 (diff words)
As if this isn’t interesting enough (!) the sopranos are notable for being the only voice which has the 4ths idea, rarely joins the thrilling motif and never has the chromatic line! Instead they go ‘off piste’ with exotic and rather angular and atonal melodies such as on p46/47.
No mention has been made of pages 56/57, which we didn’t tackle, as the music here does not refer to any of the above. It is a new idea which all voices share and for the first time the music is contrapuntal (moving independently of each other) to symbolise ‘multitudes’. Clever eh?!
We also sang through opening pages 5-17 to keep them on the boil, and started to pick apart the chords on pages 12/13. This needs revisiting.
RVW – Pages 48-52. This section is basically two rounds going on at the same time. S & T sing the same tune (with a few notes altered at key changes)one bar apart; A & B do the same with an almost inverted version of the same tune. Simple and effective – gives the impression of calmness and reassurance but with an underlying unsettled feeling reflecting the ‘search’ for peace. Tension is created by the key changes (fig 32 and 33) and introduction of some chromatics (D flat bottom p 49, developed with F flat p51). ‘Stability’ and groundedness of the is maintained by the simple melodies expressed in the rounds. Clever too eh?
What we will do on 26.09.18
Elgar pages 32-40. RVW pages 22-28 + singing through some sections already rehearsed.
03.10.18 & 10.10.18: Auditions – sections from both works. Candidates will be introducing you to new sections you have not seen!
17.10.18: Elgar pages 18-31 and 68-73. RVW Pages 6-20
24.10.18 (Half term): Elgar pages 42-45. RVW pages 40-45 + other sections revisited
31.10.18: Elgar pages 45-59 and start 78-end. RVW pages 54-61
07.11.18: AGM + short rehearsal