March in F Major

Uploaded on Dec 10, 2017

Enough of pessimistic marches for a little bit. Let's listen to an optimistic, spirited march!

This march's starting F major portion is happy and lively, rolling along into a sunny future. It isn't entirely innocent when it shifts to A flat major and then F minor, but it figures out how to be optimistic again and moves back to F major.

The B flat major trio is a nice contrast, with its stately motions and more regal atmosphere. Like the F major march proper, though, it does inflect towards the parallel minor. Bars 103-123 remind me of an American march break strain.

I actually came up with the first bars of this piece by riffing on the last four notes of my Sonata-Allegro in F Minor ("Complexity Within") (https://www.musescore.com/user/9996931/scores/4791177). There might be a 4-movement piano sonata with "Complexity Within" as the first movement and this as the second movement coming up. This does fit in a regular piano sonata, after all--it's in compound ternary form.

Both sections remind me of Beethoven's music at times. This piece especially reminds me of the second movement of Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 28 in A Major, Op. 101 (you can hear it in https://musescore.com/classicman/scores/119945 and tell me how similar my piece is).

Tell me if this piece needs more slurs and/or other markings.

(Structure: A1-A1-A2-A1'-A2-A1'-B1-B1-B2-B1'-B2-B1'-A1-A2-A1')

march piano optimistic happy

Pages 5
Duration 04:45
Measures 140
Key signature 1 flat
Parts 1
Part names Piano
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HI this is nice! Have you noticed that the parts with single notes (5-8 and the measures with similar rhythm) sound a lot like Tschaikovskyj? Like, the climbing bass and the way you lie the chords?
Nope, I actually haven't. I've listened to some Tchaikovsky--does he pull off this stuff in the works of his I'm the most familiar with (The Nutcracker, the 3rd movement of his Pathetique Symphony, September from The Seasons)?
This song is really good. I'm trying to write my own march right now, and it would really help if you told me how you composed this. I've studied music theory for a while but nothing I create sounds good.
No problem. Again, this march was born when I improvised on the last 4 notes of my Sonata-Allegro in F Minor ("Complexity Within") and came up with the opening bars of this piece. (I actually came up with that melody while humming during work.) I think the next bars I came up with were the transposition to A flat major (starting in Bar 21). I had to affix them in my mind for a while as I came up with the rest of the A1 section. The A2 section is mainly an extension of that A flat major version of the A1 section.
At some point, I must have decided that this march would be in compound ternary form (to match European classical-era marches, which tend to be in ternary form), with both the march proper and the trio being in rounded binary form.
So the A1' section is almost like the A1 section, except the A1' section ends in the home key of F major while the A1 section ends in the dominant, C major (as European A1 sections are wont to do). The A1' section is also extended a little. I managed to come up with a good countermelody for Bars 74-78 and I used it in the left hand.
The trio is in the subdominant, B flat major (the trio being in the subdominant is a trend in all kinds of marches). Like the A1 sections, the B1 section ends in the dominant (F major this time) while the B1' section is much like it except it ends in the new home key (B flat major). The B2 section is based on a ii-V chord hyper-progression (I was tempted to use a more usual vi-V chord hyper-progression, though). Its being 20 bars long is probably influenced by American march break strains, which sometimes aren't 8, 16, or 32 bars long (unlike other march sections). The trio uses long, effectively dotted notes because that makes a good contrast from the march proper's 8th-note runs.
European classical-era marches don't tend to change tempo midway through, so I also opted to keep the same tempo throughout.
Since European classical-era marches don't have interludes between sections that are outside of repeats, I had to make sure I could keep all my music within rounded binary repeats without having bad transitions.
Rather like other marches I've heard, this piece doesn't use syncopation that much. (Syncopation in American marches tends to threaten to make them sound like ragtime, I find.)
I had to host my parents for a while, so I couldn't really access my computer, and I had to memorize the entire melody for the better part of a month. After they went back home, I quickly wrote the melody into Musescore and put down harmonies that fit.
I don't mean to sound rude, but this is an improvised piece? Like, you came up with a melody, and it just sounded good? Because I'm using music theory knowledge and it still doesn't sound very good.
This isn't a wholly improvised piece--I repeat several phrases verbatim (e.g. Bars 1-3 vs. Bars 8.5-11 vs. Bars 55.5-58 vs. Bars 63.5-66), I move around motives in several places (one of the most noticeable examples of this is Bars 40-45), I had to make sure the piece fit compound ternary form with each section being in rounded binary form, I adjusted the rhythm of the trio's melody after listening to it on Musescore, and I did have to fix up the left hand at times after listening to it on Musescore. However, I did improvise several motives and create the rest of the piece from modified versions of those motives.
Great fun. Well crafted and enjoyable.
Very nice, really sounds like Beethoven and the chords in the B section remind me of Wanderer Phantasie by Schubert (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vy_HeH-pRfI).
On second listen, I can definitely hear the opening of the Wanderer Phantasie in my trio. Thank goodness Schubert is in the public domain.
The only thing missing here is Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones and Michael Palin. And a flying circus.