Theme and Variations – Little Girl Dance

Theme and variations are really interesting! If you saw the post on making your own arrangement, a theme and variation is kind of like that, except the original version and the new version are both a part of the same piece. Here’s the dictionary definition:

Theme and Variation

Theme and variation is a specific kind of form in music. The form of a piece of music tells you how the music is organized. With a theme and variation, the piece begins with a theme that is the main melody. That is followed by one or more variations of that melody. A variation is music that is similar to the theme but is also different enough that it does not repeat the melody exactly.” –Β http://study.com/academy/lesson/theme-variation-in-music-definition-form-examples.htm

Check out the lesson video in the link above for more information and a quiz πŸ™‚

Also, here is another example of a famous theme and variation:

Does that melody sound familiar? Can you hear that familiar song woven through each variation?

Try making up your own variation! And if you do, send it to me and I’ll post it on the blog!

Danielle πŸ™‚

Learning about Dynamics with Arabesque

 

Greetings!

Today we’re going to talk about Dynamics. In music, dynamics has to do with how loud or how soft you are playing. The main terms I want you to remember are piano, forte, crescendo, and decrescendo.

Instead of just reading a bunch of words about it, however, here are some amusing videos that help get the point across:

Forte and Piano

Crescendo and Decrescendo

There are actually a lot more than just these four terms though! Here is a chart of some of them.
Dynamic Markings

I thought this one was interesting because it helps give an understandable idea of what the sound difference is supposed to be:

Dynamic's Note Velocity

For even more information, you can check out https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamics_%28music%29

And that’s about it! Go back to the recording of Arabesque above and listen for the different dynamics when the markings appear.

Have a great day!

Danielle πŸ™‚

 

 

Pachelbel’s Canon in D

Two posts for this week!

Pachelbel’s Canon is one of the most well known classical pieces in the world. It was written around 1680 for three violins and a bass by Johann Pachelbel, a German composer. Today, it is frequently used as wedding music.

Here is a great link if you would like to learn a little bit more about the piece and listen to a youtube video of it: http://www.classicfm.com/composers/pachelbel/music/pachelbels-canon-d-facts/#mU3krF2CqPIGDzFY.97

For those of you who are playing this piece, I have some files for you. These are midi recordings of the music and the sheet music for the part you will play by itself, and all the parts together. A midi recording is electronic, so it may sound a little weird, but it’s still helpful to have.

Part 1 Only
Audio: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B98pP6Nhq8BEMkZGT0xud05WYkk/view?usp=sharing
Sheet Music:Canon in D part 1 PDF

All Parts
Audio: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B98pP6Nhq8BEakMtcV9PaHdHX2M/view?usp=sharing
Sheet Music:Canon in D PDF

There are two main ideas that are important to know about Canon in D. The first is that this piece is a type of music called a Canon. The second is that in this Canon, Pachelbel uses something called an Ostinato.

See the below video for a good (and rather silly) explanation of a Canon, also known as a Round:

Pachelbel uses an Ostinato throughout the entire piece. It’s the bassline you hear that goes like this:

D A B F# G D G A

To understand what an Ostinato is a bit better, check out this video:

Before I go, I thought I’d explain a little bit of how I made the sheet music and recordings. There are some wonderful computer programs that allow you to write music on your computer and it will play back what you have written using special audio software. The program I use is Finale. You get to enter in the notes on the staff with your mouse or keyboard. Here’s a picture so you can see:

Screen Shot of Finale

So on the top and left, you can see all the buttons for picking out certain kinds of notes, rests, time and key signatures, etc. It can be pretty fun actually!

Finally, if you prefer this instead, I have some youtube videos of the recordings.

SO much information in one post! Haha

If you are interested in playing Pachelbel’s canon, please download the music and we can work on it in class πŸ™‚

Have a great day!
Danielle