Seminar October 10, 2012

In class on Wednesday, October 10th, we talked about intervals, via a demonstration from Professor Kahan. We learned that an interval is the distance between notes. Seconds are dissonant, while thirds are used for harmonies. We also learned that fourths are used a lot in Chinese music, which was implemented in Turandot. In the opera, Puccini wrote two different styles of music. For Calaf’s parts, he wrote more Italian style music. However, for Liu’s parts, he implemented those fourths to create what he believed was a Chinese sound. I found it interesting learning about that after having seen such a good example of it live at the opera.

Later in the class, Professor Michael Sirotta came in to speak to us. One interesting thing he mentioned was his first musical memory. He told us about the first song he remembered hearing, and it got me thinking about what my first musical memory was. Honestly, though, I haven’t been able to remember it, but I found it fascinating that he was able to remember his. He then discussed his composition, Fantasia Pripetshok, and let us hear a short preview of it. I was truly impressed with his composition skills because of the fact that he was able to hear all of that in his head and transfer it onto paper as a musical score.