Music Performance 361, Fall 2005: Introduction to Composition
Assignment 7: due Monday, November 14, 2005

Compositional challenge: compose a series of progressive one-measure variations for flute and clarinet. Each measure should develop, alter, and elaborate the contents of the previous measure, rather than referring to an "original" theme. You are looking for local continuity - each measure should relate clearly to the previous and next bar - but also large-scale contrast - try to make the ending of the piece as remote from the beginning as possible! This almost certainly requires that you change the variation technique, or the musical parameter being altered, with each new measure. As with the collage assignment, see if you can make at least twenty-five variations/measures.

As always, be as audacious and free with your choice of variation techniques as possible. Dramatic shifts of register, inversions of dynamics, compressions and expansions of rhythm, and refashionings of harmony are all encouraged! The elements which remain consistent from measuure to measure will help to preserve continuity and create perceptible transitions.

Some information about the flute and clarinet:

- flute range: C4 (middle C) to F7
- clarinet range: D3 to G6 (sounding)
the clarinet is a transposing instrument (in B-flat), so its written range is E3 to A6
pitches sound a whole-step lower than written
- contemporary techniques for the flute and clarinet include
downwards glissandi (very short in the lower register - quarter-tone at most; somewhat wider in the upper register)
breathy and "air" tones
multiphonics (produced through special fingerings or singing/humming while playing)
quarter-tone fingerings
slap-tonguing and flutter-tonguing
- remember that the flute can be easily "covered" by the clarinet in its low register, and that both instrumentalists will need opportunities to breathe!

Good luck with this --