Composing Ideas

  1. Choose a short poem with a strong theme or imagery and set the words to music. Decide whether a major or minor key will best suit the theme of the poem. Start by fitting rhythms to the words (find where the natural accents come) and then add the melody. Open the song with a piano introduction. Include some piano figurations which reflect the words. Close the song with a short piano passage.
  2. Create a piece for a cappella voices based on the words of Bombo Lao, a work song from the Congo region. Use some of the techniques found in African choral music such as a homophonic texture, call and response, descending phrases and vocal percussion sounds. Some of the words from the song are: Bombo lao, bombo lao, bombo lao, bombo lao, bombo lao, bombo lao Manzo kio, manzo kio, manzo kio, manzo kio, manzo kio Seka tema, seka tema, seka tema, seka tema, seka tema

Compose a vocal piece which uses some of the techniques found in And the Glory of the Lord. You could use some or all of the following ideas:

  • base the composition around two or more simple motives
  • use imitation between parts
  • use sequences
  • use some syllabic word-setting and some melismatic word-setting
  • use terraced dynamics
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