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Topic: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Orcas Island

    'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver

    Christopher A. Tolliver just sent in his new work: 'Hymn for a New World'

    Here is the link:


    "The piece depicts a celebration of world peace and builds to a climax as a white dove is released, symbolizing the beginning of a new era."

    Christopher writes: "This piece was written in about 8 hours exclusively utilizing Finale '06 GPO Bundle, without a keyboard, using the old point and click method.

    The orchestration is as follows: piccolo, flute 1, 2, oboe 1, 2, clarinet 1, 2, bassoon, horns 1, 2, 3, trumpet 1, 2, 3, trombone 1, 2, 3, 2 tubas, orchestral percussion, timpani, harp, violin 1, 2 (KS, Arco, tremolo), viola (KS), cello (KS, tremolo, pizzicato), double bass (KS, tremolo, pizzicato)

    A very cinematic and a triumphant piece that is inspiring and well-produced.

    Thanks Christopher for sharing this with us.

    Gary Garritan

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Penfield (Rochester), NY

    Re: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver


    Very nice work...and fast too considering you did mouse entry. It is a very dynamic and powerful work that you created. The rendering is excellent using the GPO, good instrument selections. Hopefully you will have more works to follow.



  3. #3

    Re: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver

    Thoroughly enjoyed the listen. Well crafted compositionally and production wise.

    And very inspirational in sound for Hope.


    A rare treasure found in this world now-a-days.

    Thank you for sharing this composition.

    Peace. . .


  4. #4

    Re: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver


    Ted (above) has just the word for this one, a treasure.

    Beautifully done, and radiant with hope... may we pray
    your vision becomes our reality.


  5. #5

    Re: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver


    An excellent orchestration with an even better theme.........world peace.

    Outstanding use of GPO with Finale. Many won't believe you did this with a mouse and a music program. Well done.

    Question: Did you use a Mac or PC with Finale '06?

    Jack Cannon--Toshiba laptop, 2.8 GHz CPU, 1.5 GB RAM, GPO4-JABB3-Auth. STEINWAY-Gofriller CELLO-Stradivari VIOLIN-COMB2-WORLD, FINALE 2009/11, RME Digiface, Cardbus, V-Stack---Mac Pro 2.66 GHz CPU, 8 GB RAM, DP 8, MOTU Traveler, MOTU Micro Express.--MacBook Pro 2.2 Ghz CPU, 8 GB RAM.

  6. #6

    Re: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver

    Thank you guys for your very kind words. I'm quite humbled and extremely glad you enjoyed it.

    Yeah, this piece came really fast. I had been on a dry-spell for about a month and just couldn't write anything of substance. Then on my day off I was able to relax and it started gushing out.

    As for the point-and-click, and hopefully not coming across as a complete flake, I just feel a bit closer to the music because I'm not bound by where my fingers go when I'm on keyboard. Yes, if I'm in a hurry I'll switch over. But on keyboard I find I get really lazy; I don't like the idea of muscle memory dictating my music. When led to my own devices I'd rather it just be me and my old mouse.

    Question: Did you use a Mac or PC with Finale '06?
    PC with Finale '06

    Thank you again. I can't wait to start listening to your pieces.



  7. #7

    Re: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver

    Beautifully done! Great orchestration with Finale! Gives us hope for us point-&-clickers with notation programs (Sibelius user here ). Very well done!


    ♪♪♪♪ CâTå ♪♪♪♪

  8. #8

    Re: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver

    Hi Chris,

    I enjoyed this very much. Thanks for posting.

    Now, I have to know - because it's driving me mad!! It concerns those strings. How do you get them to sound so life-like? I can actually hear the players giving the string a slight wobble to keep the note going on the quiet sustained bit a couple of pages before the end! I can't seem to reproduce that sort of realism. Is that the tremelo effect and if so, is that being handled by Finale 2006 Human Playback? Also, what range of velocity values are you using and is legato enabled? Sorry to be so inquisitive, but I would dearly love some further insight please.

    BTY, I'm using Finale 2005 so it's possible I'm missing out on some improved HP features. If so, I will install the upgrade which I purchased nearly a year ago straight away. The only reason I haven't used it is because I've been slaving away on a massive project I began with 2005 trying to improve the realism of the strings!!

  9. #9

    Re: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver


    I think I know the moment you're talking about. I'm not sure if I can pin-point it down to one particular thing.

    The moment I'm thinking of is just after the climax and the violins and cello begin on a subito piano tremelo, followed by an acsending viola line leading to a horn chord. As soon as the horns stop playing is the moment in which you hear that bit of wobbly vibrato, right?

    I think that's because the strings are going from tremelo to arco; assuming we are talking about the same moment. That's my first guess and the simplest, and is probably the most correct.

    Human playback or the Ambience reverb may have something to do with it as well; though I'm not too sure about that since I didn't have Finale prior to '06. Another approach might be to change your settings in the Human playback. I keep exploring the program finding new little things everyday.

    The hardest part about his piece wasn't in the writing but trying to find the right time/diffusion/size/predelay ratio, and then finding a variation that best fits the need of the room I've just created. That's ultimately why the strings sound as good as they do.

    The only other thing I did differently is in the choosing of my violin samples. I usually have contrasting samples in my first and second violins: firsts may be KS, while the seconds are arco. It makes a difference with my ear and its the subtle things you can do to make it sound a bit more realistic. You might even try micro-tuning your strings for solo/soli sections; Paganini often did this so he could be heard over a large orchestra.

    The part of the piece I really tried to get right was the kind of sound I wanted for the second section of the piece starting at :59. I wanted a sting in the brass in the short canon section leading up to the transition into the low-register strings which also needed a tinctured, woody sound. This wasn't achieved until I found the right room variation.

    There are tons of things you can do to enhance your sound with this program. As you know, it can be a big payoff or a big pain in the butt.

    Okay, I've rambled on enough. Hopefully this answers your question, or at least gives you some options to choose from. It really is a matter of patience, determination and just plain experimentation. If you have any other questions please feel free to ask. I'm no expert but we can at least compare notes.



  10. #10

    Re: 'Hymn for a New World' by Christopher A. Tolliver

    Hi Chris,

    Thanks. This is much appreciated. I shall take a closer look at your settings. I think I shall also move up to F2006 now that I've almost finished the pieces I was working on in F2005. That said, I expect F2007 isn't that far away!

    Regards, Graham

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