Mythic Fox : a composition for mixed ensemble of East Asian and Western instruments

Date
2013-12
Authors
Watson, William Matthew
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Publisher
[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [December 2013]
Abstract
Mythic Fox is a composition for large mixed ensemble of 15 players, consisting of traditional instruments from Korea, Japan, China, and Western instruments. The purpose of this paper is to offer a more in-depth view of the musical work. The paper is comprised of two parts. The first part deals with reasons for the choice of instrumentation, compositional techniques, precedents for the ensemble, the purpose of the piece, what challenges were encountered during the compositional process, the anticipated challenges during the performance, and the extra-musical idea (the fox folklore). The second part focuses on the analysis of the composition: form, timbre, texture, pitch and rhythm, performance techniques, and the cultural aesthetics involved. The ultimate reason for composing a piece of music is to create music that is accessible to the audience, providing a sonic world that draws in the listener with a balance of the new and the familiar. The piece is designed to be as exciting for the performers as it is for their audience. For performers, the piece provides an unusual opportunity to play alongside instruments they may have yet to encounter in a performance setting, and be part of creating a unique combination of cultures; not just the familiar and overused "East meets West", but "East meets East meets West." Japanese, Korean and Chinese instruments would not normally be found within the same ensemble. Though their origins are intertwined, each culture's traditions developed the instruments, sonorities, techniques, and styles with distinct differences.
Description
M.Mus. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2013.
Includes bibliographical references.
Keywords
mixed ensemble, traditional instruments
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