Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Monday, June 1, 2009

Getting Systematic Again

What is it about turning a calendar page that makes one want to begin anew?

Well, here it is June 1st and I am feeling the need to take a more systematic approach. It could have something to do with the fact that I simplified my process greatly when I had very busy weeks. Well -- for whatever reason...

Here's what I've decided to do. I'm going to work through the book The Technique of Canon by Hugo Norden (Boston: Brandon Press, [no date]).

Norden is an interesting character to me. He taught for many years in Boston (including at the Boston Conservatory where he taught some of the courses that I teach there now!)and there are still many of his students in my circle of colleagues. The first book that I learned counterpoint from was his Fundamental Counterpoint.

The Technique of Canon (like many of his other books) takes a fairly mathematical approach to things, Don't rush to decry that as unmusical, it is anything but. Counterpoint is to music as perspective is to the visual arts. There are techniques and the ARE mathematical, no matter how one might choose to approach them.

Anyway, the math is really more like arithmetic to be sure.

I'll talk about that over the next few days. For now, here is a 1st species style perpetual canon written according to principles in the Norden book.

(click on image to enlarge)

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