Somewhere beyond the se…ries! [Pt. 3]

The method of serial composition that I showed you earlier is not the most immediate to deal with but it’s turning out to be very versatile and prone to improvements. Here I am going to explain a solution to avoid the rhythmic monotony of just superimposing patterns having the same meter, such as those I used in previous posts. As an illustrative example, consider the following three patterns

A   x . . x
B   x x .
C   . . . x . x

First, I assign a specific combination of them to the voices I want to overlap

B     C           B
x x . . . . x . x x x .

A       A       B     A
x . . x x . . x x x . x . . x

At this point, there are several ways to align the two strings. I could fix the beat and scroll one string upon the other, like this

|x x . |. . . |x . x |x x . |<============
======>|x . . |x x . |. x x |x . x |. . x |

This kind of approach doesn’t rescue from the risk of rhythmic monotony. As an alternative, I could stretch or shrink one string proportionately to the length of the other string

or partially in its length

|x x . . . |.         x         .         x         x         x         .         |
|x . . x x |.      .      x      x      x      .      x      .      .      x      |

Here we go! It now appears that the method gained a broadened applicability. It would be interesting to apply this kind of musical pattern transformations to simulate a mosaic tessellation like the following “Maya-ish” example, where I used just two patterns (. x x and . x x x).


About epogdous

I'm an italian student of Pharmaceutical Biotechnology in Sapienza University of Rome. Dispite my scientific interests (which range from structural biology to immunology, etc.) I cultivate a deep passion for classical music and in general for musicology. As a teen I studied the flute but basically I'm a self-taught pianist and composer. I'm well-acquainted with the music of 1850-1950 era. I generally don't like to say I have preferences for some composer in particular but I can't deny that Ralph Vaughan Williams and Charles Ives hold a great fascination to me. I think that the common message of their music is the transcendentalist precept "low living, high thinking".
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