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Thread: Dream Chamber Orchestra

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    Senior Member Edward Elgar's Avatar
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    Default Dream Chamber Orchestra

    O.K. So the last thread got a bit out of hand, so let's scale down a bit!

    If you were going to compose a peice for a chamber ensamble, which instruments would you write for? Try and be as selective as possible!

    My choice would be as follows:

    4 violins
    2 violas
    2 cellos
    1 double bass

    1 piano
    1 harp

    1 clarinet
    1 bassoon

    1 marimba
    When all the paint has been dried, when all the stone has been carved, music shall remain, and we shall work with what remains.

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    Senior Member Frasier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Elgar View Post
    O.K. So the last thread got a bit out of hand, so let's scale down a bit!

    If you were going to compose a peice for a chamber ensamble, which instruments would you write for? Try and be as selective as possible!

    My choice would be as follows:

    4 violins
    2 violas
    2 cellos
    1 double bass

    1 piano
    1 harp

    1 clarinet
    1 bassoon

    1 marimba
    Excuse an opinion about the above please - having two of a stringed instrument is dodgy unless they're perfect players because discrepancies in intonation will stand out like a sore thumb. Best to have just one, or three or more.

    My chamber orchestra would be

    1 flute
    1 oboe/cor anglais
    2 clarinets (2 also plays bass clarinet)

    2 horns

    4 violins 1
    3 violins 2
    1 viola
    1 cello
    1 double bass

    That's because I can get my hands on these resources (except the horns that are rare round here!)

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    Senior Member Edward Elgar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frasier View Post
    Excuse an opinion about the above please - having two of a stringed instrument is dodgy unless they're perfect players because discrepancies in intonation will stand out like a sore thumb. Best to have just one, or three or more.
    The same can be said for woodwinds!

    You don't have to be a perfect player to match the intonation of a string buddy - a few scales in duet should let you know where your partner's at!
    When all the paint has been dried, when all the stone has been carved, music shall remain, and we shall work with what remains.

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    Senior Member Frasier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Elgar View Post
    The same can be said for woodwinds!
    Hopefully one wouldn't have too many ww instruments playing in unison in a chamber orchestra. They tend to play separate parts thankfully!

    You don't have to be a perfect player to match the intonation of a string buddy - a few scales in duet should let you know where your partner's at!
    In unison? And I thought that was the standard definition of a minor second. It isn't something I'd stake my chances on. Each to their own opinion though!

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    Senior Member Kurkikohtaus's Avatar
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    E.E., putting a piano in with an ensemble that small will unbalance the whole group dynamically. Better a harpsichord or celeste, depending on what kind of sound you want.

    In case anyone wants to know, the standard string seating for real chamber orchestras is:

    4-3-3-2-1

    Which makes 13 strings total. There's even a baroque orchestra called Thirteen Strings. There are or course many variations of this, especially taking out the third viola and leaving 21 players, but 13 is the standard that has stood the test of time.

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    Senior Member Edward Elgar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kurkikohtaus View Post
    E.E., putting a piano in with an ensemble that small will unbalance the whole group dynamically. Better a harpsichord or celeste, depending on what kind of sound you want.
    What about piano trios? If the piano plays quietly, there is no need for concern.
    When all the paint has been dried, when all the stone has been carved, music shall remain, and we shall work with what remains.

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    Senior Member Edward Elgar's Avatar
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    I'd like to know what sort of ensamble Kurkikohtaus would like to compose for.
    When all the paint has been dried, when all the stone has been carved, music shall remain, and we shall work with what remains.

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    I have a recording on authentic instruments of Beethoven's concertos 4 & 5 and the orchestra is one instrument to a part! Thus it amounts to about 20 performers in total. There are historical grounds for this for the 4th concerto at least as its premier was performed in this manner, though in this recording it is No5 that is the revelation, never has the spirit of revolution sounded so powerful than in this recording:

    http://www.cduniverse.com/search/xx/...erd,+et+al.htm

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    Senior Member Kurkikohtaus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edward Elgar View Post
    I'd like to know what sort of ensamble Kurkikohtaus would like to compose for.
    I may or may not have answered this in the Dream (big) Orchestra thread...

    Anyhow, I force one piece of mine per season on my orchestra, written under my pseudonym Jan Hora, so that the musicians can pretend they don't know it's written by me and are free to criticize it. I use the same orchestration as in most of Sibelius' symphonies from 3 onwards:

    2222 - 4330 - T - Strings

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