The Larger Forms of Musical Compositions: An Exhaustive Explanation of the Variations, Rondos, and Sonata Designs, for the General Student of Musical Analysis, and for the Special Student of Structural Composition, by Percy Goetschius

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G. Schirmer, 1915 - Composition (Music) - 231 pages

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Page v - My meaning simply is, that whatever I have tried to do in life, I have tried with all my heart to do well; that whatever I have devoted myself to, I have devoted myself to completely; that in great aims and in small, I have always been thoroughly in earnest. I have never believed it possible that any natural or improved ability can claim immunity from the companionship of the steady, plain, hard-working qualities, and hope to gain its end.
Page v - ... art in which rich and powerful expression is manifested must necessarily be preceded by a long period in which the resources of design and the methods of artistic treatment are developed. Artistic matters are on no different footing in that respect from the ordinary work of everyday life. Inspiration without methods and means at its disposal will no more enable a man to write a symphony than to build a ship or a cathedral.
Page v - Passion, whether great or not, must never be expressed in an exaggerated manner, and Music — even in the most harrowing moment — ought never to offend the ear, but should always remain Music, which desires to give pleasure.
Page vi - It is narrow-minded to assume that these exercises, and the persistent application of "rules," will hamper genius. They need not be executed coldly and mechanically. Subjective, personal, enthusiasm may course just as hotly here as in the pursuit of any other occupation; and the student is nowhere invited to check this enthusiasm — only to control and guide it. Properly applied by the student, these exercises can thus only increase the power of his genius.
Page 83 - Such a creative process cannot always be carried on, with the necessary freedom, within the exact limits of the Theme. The confines of the latter must be broken through, its lines broadened, its scope widened, to make room for the unrestricted exercise of imagination, and to provide increased opportunity for free development.
Page 90 - In the higher form of the variation, where such transformations of the design are undertaken, it is almost obligatory to adopt, and adhere to, the melody-line of the Theme (in a certain sense as if it were a Fugue-subject), as this is the only line of contact which will demonstrate with sufficient clearness the relation of the (quasi distorted) variation to its Theme.
Page 83 - The leading purpose in the smaller grade is technical manipulation, — "variation," with fairly direct reference to the Theme. In the larger grade the leading purpose is imaginative and creative manipulation, — "elaboration," with only general allusion to the Theme.
Page vi - The classic designs are not lightly to be overthrown, for they are the cumulative product of a gradually dawning recognition of nature's musical laws, steadily progressing and crystalizing through the gathering and eliminating experiences of master-minds during many past centuries.
Page 83 - In this grade, the variations are more properly Elaborations than mere modified duplications of the Theme. Hence it is that, while a longer Theme is usually chosen, as affording a wider field of operation, it is nevertheless possible to develop an imposing work, decidedly "large" in spirit, from a comparatively brief Theme.

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