by Professor Alan Belkin

Lesson 2G - Achieving Blended Harmony for Winds

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Comments from Professor Belkin on Example No. 2G:
This version sounds more orchestral. Note that there is much less integral doubling of lines between instruments. Only the two
bassons are together all the time, and even they move into octaves in the 2nd full bar. (This provides a better bass for a loud
setting.) Apart from oboe #1, which has the melody, and the basoons, with the bass, the other instruments weave completely newlines from bits and pieces of the various original parts. This kind of "pseudo-counterpoint" is typical in orchestration for larger ensembles, and is the best way to avoid the beginner's most common mistake: overuse of unison doubling.

The problems which remain are:
- the clarinets pause in m. 2, which leaves a hole in the middle of the texture, and will feel arbitrary to the players.
- the horns are written very low. As a result, the texture is dominated by the oboe on top and the heavy combination of horns andbassoons on the bottom; this contrast between thin/high and thick/low is not effective for a texture which should sound

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©Alan Belkin, 2006