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De Oriendo is a project devoted to a better understanding of the word "original" as it pertains to musical composition. It began as a way for me to try to tackle a twofold fascination that has been with me for the duration of my time at ASU, though I have not always been aware of it. The first half of this fascination is an enduring interest in tracing borrowed material used by composers and other artists throughout history. It seems that almost every research project I have undertaken in the last four years has had something to do with this concept. Scholars like Winton Dean, J. Peter Burkholder, and Sigmund Spaeth have spent parts of their careers charting out the genealogy of historical compositions, uncovering reused melodies and harmonic progressions in the process; the cases of it are countless, even among the most identifiable composers and songwriters. Since there is scholarship clearly demonstrating secondhand ideas in music, it becomes problematic to assume that the word "original" simply describes something completely new, that is, something that does not use material heard or seen before. The second half is more of a personal ambition: I thought that if I truly knew what composers and critics meant when they labeled a piece or an artist as original, then I could somehow find a way to achieve this distinction in my own attempts at composition and avoid that uninteresting, derivative sound I have always feared.
The following project is an audition preparation handbook for double bass players. The materials and techniques included are designed for use by advanced collegiate bass players seeking work as freelance or contracted musicians. Subjects ranging from finding an opening, becoming mentally and physically prepared, and developing the skills and experience necessary to be successful will be examined. The most frequently requested audition excerpts are included in this document, carefully extracted from the original orchestra parts and notated with efficient fingerings. Elements of style and performance are discussed. Each of the excerpts is recorded on the enclosed CD, performed by the author as examples to the readers. It is the hope of the author that the study and use of this text will better prepare the readers for entrance into the working world of the music industry. Ideas, processes, and materials that are often neglected in a degree program are examined with the hope that students will be better prepared to audition for, and win orchestral positions.
The ensemble étude for violins: an examination with an annotated survey of violin trios and quartets and an original étude for four violins
ABSTRACT études; written for violin ensemble, which include violin duets, trios, and quartets, are less numerous than solo études.; These works rarely go by the title "étude;," and have not been the focus of much scholarly research. Ensemble études; have much to offer students, teachers and composers, however, because they add an extra dimension to the learning, teaching, and composing processes. This document establishes the value of ensemble études; in pedagogy and explores applications of the repertoire currently available. Rather than focus on violin duets, the most common form of ensemble étude;, it mainly considers works for three and four violins without accompaniment. Concentrating on the pedagogical possibilities of studying études; in a group, this document introduces creative ways that works for violin ensemble can be used as both études; and performance pieces. The first two chapters explore the history and philosophy of the violin étude; and multiple-violin works, the practice of arranging of solo études; for multiple instruments, and the benefits of group learning and cooperative learning that distinguish ensemble étude; study from solo étude; study. The third chapter is an annotated survey of works for three and four violins without accompaniment, and serves as a pedagogical guide to some of the available repertoire. Representing a wide variety of styles, techniques and levels, it illuminates an historical association between violin ensemble works and pedagogy. The fourth chapter presents an original composition by the author, titled Variations on a Scottish Folk Song: étude; for Four Violins, with an explanation of the process and techniques used to create this ensemble étude.; This work is an example of the musical and technical integration essential to étude; study, and demonstrates various compositional traits that promote cooperative learning. Ensemble études; are valuable pedagogical tools that deserve wider exposure. It is my hope that the information and ideas about ensemble études; in this paper and the individual descriptions of the works presented will increase interest in and application of violin trios and quartets at the university level.