This blog is dedicated to topics with a direct relationship to me or to my activities. Examples of this is: my methodologies for writing music, project notes and the like.

(on occasion I expand or contract the contents of the blogposts)

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Written Short Pieces

The purpose of this blogpost is to explain and describe the way by which I write and create my series of musical writing (scores or sheet music) named “Written Short Pieces”. The first thing to mention in this regard, is the underlaying structure or method of generation of the compositions in question. First and foremost, the way which I go about creating these short compositions is Intuitive and not Analytical in nature. This is to say that that in the stage of conception and creation there does nor exist any predetermined row of chords, chordal structure or notes, which are then employed as a starting point for a series of rhythmic and melodic deductions and expansions (like in traditional/classical harmony for instance.  So, what do I mean by “Intuitive”?

I usually go about creating my pieces in the following manner… (the process I use is more akin to habits and rules of thumb, than to any method or methodology in the strict sense)…:

First, I have a vague Idea of what it is I want to accomplish. This vague idea is best characterised, I think, as something like a “mood” or like a “vision” of what it is I want to create and what direction I want to take creatively speaking. This is nothing definitive though. As I write and the piece materialises before my eyes, so does the contour of the idea step by step solidifies to something concrete and definitive.

My vague idea is structured around a loosely defined core concept. In the practise of composing this means that I try (most of the time, anyway) to keep the composition somewhat structured around this core concept, so as to avoid flakiness and absence of any definite character/identity in the piece. And thus in the process of this generative writing the pieces inner logic.

(This intuitively generated inner logic, can then, of course, later be used as a starting point for a creation of a new piece from the old one using analytical and deductive methods; or further creation employing the intuitive approach.).

The method I most often use to keep the compositions structured are: repetitions and variations of themes, phrases and motifs throughout the piece. On occasion I also introduce contrasting elements for novelty and to counter strong tendencies of monotony. The “Written Short Pieces” series is also characterised by a minimal use of “determinators” like dynamics and other musical symbology and markings which make the musical instructions precise.

“The Process is more Intuitive than Analytical”.

This is by design. It makes the compositions more “open”, both to the reader of the score, when “hearing ” it in the mind and to the musician enacting or realising the muswic contained in the score.

The intuitive generation I’ve described here, is NOT to be confused with musical improvisation, which is primarily reactive to a musical context most of the time (or just playfulness, wehich is also creative in its own way) and not constructive of the musical context in question, like the process I’ve described here ion it’s tendencies is.

Although these short compositions are complete works in themselves, they also serve as a repository of musical ideas, phrases, motifs, and the like. These I can utilise for other creative projects, when composing longer and more elaborate works in the future.

That’s All, I Think…