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The Storm

I had this idea last year of composing a suite that represents different types of weather. But it wasn't until yesterday that I started composing part of this suite. As you can probably tell from the post title, this part of the suite is supposed to represent a storm. That is why I chose the key to be a minor key. I went with C minor because it is the easiest of the minor keys for me to improvise in. I would have used 8va for the sixteenth note runs in the right hand. Problem is, the section that would be 8va goes by so fast that I'm not sure where to start the 8va. Similar thing goes for where I would typically use a clef change. So outside of the first few bars, I haven't put in any 8va markings or clef changes.

I have been doing these things to get across the feeling of a storm in the piece:

 - Keep the 16th note momentum up except for places where I decide to use a harmonic progression
- Use scalar passages with leaps to represent the strong wind
- Stark dynamic contrast(Like it quickly goes from pianissimo to fortissimo in the beginning 5 bars)
- Staccato to represent the rain
- Fast octaves to give a sense of turbulence(which is very fitting for music that is supposed to sound like a storm)
- Use the Fate Motif underneath a long scalar passage to give the feeling of a lightning flash
- Use harmonic progressions to represent the thunder
- Use diminished 7ths more often than dominant 7ths 

Here is the link to the piece if you want to give me feedback on what I have so far of it:

https://musescore.com/user/50070/scores/5611423

Can a bassoonist help me here?

So after listening to Bach's Cello Suites and his Flute Partita, I figured I would do a similar thing but for bassoon. The fact that I am writing for bassoon is partly why I decided to start with an overture instead of a prelude(French overture if you want to get into the specific type based on speed pattern). That isn't to say that the slow section won't include some fast 16ths but I have been adding long notes as I see fit.

I only have 13 measures so far, so I'm not thinking of uploading the piece yet. But I can only use the singing method for the alto range and low soprano pretty much(my natural soprano has gotten limited and squeaky over the years, and not because I overused my soprano so unlike before where I could easily sing up to a high G in my soprano, I can barely get a high C out) which means that as soon as the notes are in the range of a bass voice or a low tenor, I can't use the singing method to check for slur placement at all and in the soprano range, it isn't going to be all that accurate(Not that I would have the bassoon going into a soprano range all that often anyway).

And I myself do not play bassoon, partly because the instrument, even at beginner quality is like $3000 worth. Whereas my beginner quality flute, I got for less than $100. That is quite the price difference between the cheapest and most expensive woodwind at beginner quality, excluding auxiliaries.

If I did play bassoon at an advanced level, I could just write down the notes that I want without worrying about slurs, play the notes as written, and see where I run out of breath and how I naturally phrase it. The breath and phrasing together would determine where to put the slurs. But because I don't play bassoon, and I don't have a friend who I know is a bassoonist, this method won't work either.

So if my vocal range is limited pretty much to alto and low soprano making the singing method not viable for bassoon and I don't play bassoon, nor know a friend who plays bassoon, how am I supposed to determine where to put the slurs in my Bassoon Suite?

Inversion by Minor sixth = Change in axis?

Okay, let me clear things up here. I have a short little motive in the first theme of my rondo that I think will lend itself to motivic development nicely. My second theme starts in Ab major. Just for context here, my first theme is in C minor. Here are the notes of the motive:

C, F, D, Eb, Ab, F, G, C

I have the melodic equivalent of a line cliche here. No problems with that. Here is the interval pattern:

(Ascending fourth, Descending third, Ascending second)x2, Ascending fourth

The rhythmic pattern is quarter, eighth, eighth, quarter, eighth, eighth, quarter, quarter. So something similar to this:



but with 2 extra quarter notes added.

The fact that both the intervals and the rhythm are in a pattern means that there are both rhythmic and melodic routes to developing the motive which means more development can be done without making the motive seem boring. And the fact that the motive is long means even more development is possible than if it were shorter.

Now here is where I get to inversion. I was thinking of inverting by an interval other than the unison so that my motive could not only go down but also be consonant with Ab major. Yes I know, I could have simply transposed the motive and then do your typical inversion by the unison. But I wanted to try something different.

First I wanted to see if the interval from C to Ab was symmetrical by scale steps alone. If it was, then, there would be 1 note that would stay the same. Turns out, it wasn't symmetrical by scale steps. Now this is where I had to bring in the half steps. I was wanting to figure out what note did stay the same assuming that the inversion is by half step numbers and not scale step numbers. Turns out, it is E natural. Now I also went outwards, this time by scale steps and there was a shared note, Bb, the only note in C natural minor that doesn't appear in my motive.

This made me think

Wait a minute. If I treat this as an inversion by minor sixth, then C becomes Ab, Db becomes G, D becomes Gb, Eb becomes F, E stays put, B becomes A, and Bb stays put. I end up in Db major this way which is at least closely related to Ab major. If I treat this as a change of axis followed by inversion by the octave, I get the scale symmetry back but all of a sudden I'm in Bb major when I'm trying to go to Ab major. That is not closely related to Ab major. The only key with a tonic of Bb that is closely related to Ab major is Bb minor.


So basically, I hit a dead end there with my non-octave, non-unison inversion. I was trying to invert it such that via inversion I would go from C minor to Ab major. And I figured that it would have to involve C going to Ab. But that lead me to 2 very different keys depending on whether I think chromatically or diatonically about the inversion. In either case, the E and Bb stay put and those notes are a tritone away so the fact that they stay put after inversion makes sense because the tritone is symmetrical across the octave.

But why is it that inversion by the minor sixth does not lead you to the key a minor sixth away but instead a minor second or minor seventh away? Does this mean that I would have to invert by the major 10th to get to Ab major from C minor via inversion alone?