[Smt-talk] Improvised Canon and a Thought on Practical Approaches

Daniel Roca drocacan at gmail.com
Wed Oct 10 14:57:07 PDT 2012

Dear Dimitar

Prof Schubert's message and your comments have left me thinking that, in my opinion, the more practical a pedagogical approach is, the less rules are needed (and desired). Prof. Schubert needed only to explain very simple directions and provide an apropiate musical context in order for the canon to happen. In my opinion, there lies the beauty of his approach, and I agree very much with this kind of teaching. Generally I tend to be rather skeptical towards theory treatises with tons of rules and prohibitions like the traditional harmony books I hat to suffer in my time.

In this sense, and following the IEM system I explained some days ago, we wrote a harmony book (in fact a book for the introduction to composition) where each didactic unit consists of the analysis and written imitation of a given piece (or a group of them). In this book, we didn't feel the need to give detailed rules of voice-leading, since they emerged from the analysis and imitation.

I hope I managed to explain myself clearly in English. I respect all teaching strategies, and I learn very much form more formal treatises. I only wanted to express my sympathy (and confidence, as far as I am personally concerned) to more practical activities.

El 10/10/2012, a las 21:35, Ninov, Dimitar N escribió:

> Dear Prof. Schubert,
> That is really a wonderful activity and it keeps the performers alert! I realized that when a three-part cannon is being performed, if the entrances are strictly introduced from top to bottom or vice-versa there is no invertible counterpoint involved, but if they are crossed (middle-bottom-top; middle-top-bottom, etc.) there will be an invertible counterpoint.
> In your improvisation you chose a crossed entrance and your directions led to the natural application of an invertible counterpoint at the 12th (the girl imitated you a fifth above, and the boy imitated her at an octave below, then they changed). I was wondering if you have tried a cp at the 8-ve, where the restrictions will be a little less than in the cp at the 12th. For instance, she could imitate you at a fifth above, and he could imitate her at a fourth below. Thus the entrance tones will be do-sol-re. Other possible entrances in a cp at the 8th could be 7+2 (do-re-mi) or 6+3 (do-mi-sol) etc.
> Also, I was wondering if you have tried an imitation that comes after a few beats. In the recording they imitated themselves after a beat of waiting time.
> I am asking you these questions to learn more on what problems you and your students may have encountered, and also to see how far such a process can stretch in a 16th century style without writing a single note on paper.
> Thank you very much!
> Dimitar
> Dr. Dimitar Ninov, Lecturer
> School of Music
> Texas State University
> 601 University Drive
> San Marcos, Texas 78666
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Mark Twain: Haz siempre lo correcto. Esto gratificará a algunos, dejará atónitos al resto.

Daniel Roca
drocacan at gmail.com

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