Category: Harmonia

2021 – Composition Competition Winners

2021 – Composition Competition Winners

2021– MTNA National Finalists Our student composers look forward to the annual MTNA Composition Competition, a time-honored and prestigious event. They work hard all summer to finish their pieces by the September deadline, then count the days until the winners are announced!  The Southern Division winners were announced December 7th. We are proud to introduce […]

2021 – Playlist for NC 10by10 Play Festival

2021 – Playlist for NC 10by10 Play Festival

Playlist for 2021 NC 10by10 Play Festival September 17-26, 2021 The ArtsCenter Carrboro NC Ten plays … each ten minutes long … ten playwrights … ten actors … nine directors …  To this exciting mix, add nine young composers, ranging in age from 13 – 25.  Pure magic – and a wonderful evening of entertainment! […]

Living Horizontally

Living Horizontally

One of my gifted piano students writes about learning to “play horizontally” on the piano and “live horizontally” in her everyday life. Article by Emma Armstrong-Carter, originally published on our previous site, March 9, 2011.  Reprinted with permission of the author.    My piano teacher teaches me music theory and technique, but the most memorable […]

Samantha Strowd – Five Cats, Something Like That

Samantha Strowd – Five Cats, Something Like That

Everything about the competition sounded like fun! The year was 2011. The sponsor was a performance group in Hanover, Germany, who was giving their third annual Composers Competition. The Plathner Eleven chamber group certainly had a sense of humor and creativity. The rules for the competition were similar to other competitions, except for the theme […]

Composition Competitions – Friend or Foe?

Composition Competitions – Friend or Foe?

Composition competitions can be daunting, delightful, stressful, playful … it all depends on the competition! What makes a successful composition competition?  What environments and incentives bring composers back again and again to enter another new piece? I’ve had a lot of experience with composition competitions, since my own students enter them faithfully every fall, and […]

Listening for Texture in Classical Music

Listening for Texture in Classical Music

The basic elements of melody, harmony and rhythm are the building blocks of musical compositions, but the discerning classical composer soon adds another element to her compositional toolbox: texture. Texture is how the melody, rhythm and harmony are combined in a specific composition to produce a particular quality of sound. Texture can refer to density […]

Listening for Shape in Classical Music

Listening for Shape in Classical Music

One way to listen to classical music is listening for shape.  All pieces of music have a shape, and this shape informs the listening experience.  We sometimes use the word “shape” when describing the form of a piece, but at the most elemental level, shape is merely the rise and fall of the music.  The […]

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