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Topic: Symphony 1 - The New World

  1. #1

    Symphony 1 - The New World

    EDITED original message - april 29th 2009

    This version will be released on CD. I did a very extensive re-rendering, giving the brass more "power", amended the score at some points (in particular part 4, reducing the number of dissonants in the brass section- getting it more in harmony with the strings), reduced that "ugly" sounding downbows over all parts (and again with more attention for part 4). Also found some errors - forgotten keyswitches!!! Oh Boy, there are a lot of them at the string section.

    Here and there I added some "drama" to the overall "loudness", also inserted the Tubeleveler64 from Sonar to give it a "tubed warmer sound".

    I had a "testrun" in my living room last sunday and my wife enjoyed it, not knowing I composed it. I tricked her a bit by playing first the third symphony of Rachmaninoff (with solo violin!!!!!). So she thought Rachmaninoff composed my work also, but no, it was Raymonanov Robijnsiev.

    Please listen and comments on things to improve, things I didn't hear, to avoid making me mistakes.


    Raymond Robijns

    ================================================== =======

    Good evening friends,

    this huge undertaking has finished now. I started 8th of December 2008 with the first notes in Overture and now Tuesday 17th of March 2009 this work came to an end, finally. Getting all parts coherent required the utmost concentration, dedication and imagination.

    The various parts are based upon the Book of Revelations, in particular chapters 18, 9, 7 and 8 (U.S.-version). Of course I wrote the music with a lot of "poetic freedom" - e.g. mixing up the order of the verses.

    Notes, rendering, errors are mine.
    Instruments are all GPO.


    piccolo, 2 alto flutes, 2 oboes, 2 Bb clarinets, 1 bass clarinet, 2 bassoons, 2 contra bassoons
    4 french horns with their overlays (NOT ag) for brassier sound
    4 trumpets (also overlayed)
    4 trombones (incl. overlays)
    2 tubas - solo (incl. overlays)
    Timpani, Bass Drum, Snare Drum, Cymbal, Triangle
    Solo violin:
    Violins 1, violins2, violas, celli, contrabasses with their ag-layer and pizzicato layer

    Part 1 - refers to Revelations 18 (destruction of the new Babylon)
    Part 2 - refers to Revelations 9 (rumours of war, war, marching troops,..)
    Part 3 - refers to Revelations 7, but more as a "Lacrimosa"
    Part 4 - refers to Revelations 8, sounds of trumpets, hail, blood, violence but at the end worshipping the Risen Christ with the Gregorian eastern chant (Victimae Pascali Laudes) ending this symphony.

    For those who alreayd listened to the first three parts, I just amended the rendering at some spots, giving it more "bassy" body where needed.

    I'll hope you can sit this thru, it takes about 52 minutes of your precious time. Enjoy, and yes I learned from Berlioz' Harold on Italy (instrumentation and the use of brass, balanced against the string section), Bruckners first symphony, Porkofiev's 5th symphony, and others......

    See you around, now I have to take a break, use some time to think it over, to recuperate ..... and thinking of enhancing my computer system. I won't buy an iMac, too expensive.

    From the other side of the ocean, greetings, enjoy as I did writing this (and listening to it, of course),


  2. #2

    Re: Symphony 1 - The New World

    This is going to take a couple of days for me, but I just finished listening to the first movement. Very nice indeed. I LOVE the harmonic excursions you take during the violin solo portions.

    Very nice writing and orchestration. I'm looking forward to listening to the rest.

    Steve Winkler

  3. #3

    Re: Symphony 1 - The New World

    I'll have to listen to it in sections, but I will try to get back to you when I have.
    Things may come and things may go but the art school dance goes on forever
    NOW WITH Cubase 5, JABB,GPO, Fender Strat, Ibanez RG, Yamaha Fretless Bass, Framus Archtop, The Trumpet and Mr T Sax, together with GREEN SEALING WAX

  4. #4

    Re: Symphony 1 - The New World


    what a great composing!

    I am listening to the first part now and can listen to the others at the weekend.


    "Music is the shorthand of emotion." Leo Tolstoy

    Listen to me, tuning my triangle http://www.box.net/shared/ae822u6r3i

  5. #5

    Re: Symphony 1 - The New World

    Raymond - Probably foremost on my mind right now is that I am proud to have your acquaintance through this Forum. This work is truly monumental, no hyperbole there. Few of us have, or probably ever will take on a project so massive in its scope.

    And now what a pleasure, to begin at the beginning again and let your huge virtual orchestra roll over me.

    Like the others, I will be dividing the movements up on different days, and then I picture myself treating myself to a non-stop listening on a weekend when that kind of time away from the day-to-day is more easily found.

    The orchestral colors you have in this, and the passion with which you yield them - is so stirring to hear.

    I need to ask - "The New World Symphony"---haven't we been given that before? - It doesn't seem wise to me to duplicate an already famous name/designation.

    This next comment has nothing to do with your music - I had to take a deep breath before listening after reading your text about how it was The Book of Revelation that inspired you. I am so weary of that mystical footnote to the New Testament being given so much attention. I'm afraid it's been the cause of a lot of unhappiness and confusion in the world, and the attention it's gotten is undeserved. It's become such a favorite weapon of sorts for some sectors of the Protestant world - and I feel cynically so. Biblical scholars consider John's Revelation to be an historical document about events which happened prior to the time the text was written. I don't know of a serious scholar who considers it a truly mystical prophecy of our current world or its near future.

    And so - the subject doesn't interest me, and in fact, saddens me, but that has nothing to do with what you've accomplished.

    I heartily look forward to taking in the remaining movements, dark and somber as the piece is, I appreciate it very much.


  6. #6

    Re: Symphony 1 - The New World

    Good morning fellow composers, all of you, thank you for commenting this work.

    Steve, I LOVE the harmonic excursions you take during the violin solo portions.

    I did also, why stick to one harmonic setting if there are a lot more at hand? With the proper transition those harmonies will blend together well. One thing I learned from Schubert. Enjoy further listening.

    Buckshead, I'll have to listen to it in sections, but I will try to get back to you when I have (time?).

    You should take your time to listen to it, maybe twice. My experience is that when you listen to good music several times, it only gets better. You eventually will hear other nuances, harmonic settings, etc....

    Gunther I am listening to the first part now and can listen to the others at the weekend.

    Great opening, isn't it? Don't listen to it this weekend, it will be spring, at last. Go out and enjoy the nature, there will be enough time to dive into that sombre and dark music

    Fred The contrasts between massive and contemplative solemn is fabulously woven together. Great job!! You keep the "Symphonic" tradition alive!All the smileys applaud and sing: "Freude, schöner Götterfunken, Tochter aus Elysium"

    I learned that from Berlioz (and others of course). It gives some extra dimension to the whole, as if listeners are waiting for the next outburst of sound or take a deep breath at the next "contemplative" section. Making it interesting and quoting Prokofiev ".... to keep the audience awake".

    There is one thing I am not satisied about and that is the first few measures of that 4th part. Not the notes, but the rendering. In the score I start with mf for the whole orchestra to gradually crescendo for the following repeat of that opening. The sound of the trumpets is as if they are muted, but I checked and checked, but I had all keyswitches set for regular sustain. Maybe it is Sonar (still 5 Producer). I will have a further look into this, may be I must lower the effect of the "brassier" layer.

    All that praising makes my a bit modest, and I even hadn't any formal musical education..... anyway thanks.

    Randy, The title: OK, there is such a title from Dvorak's, 9th symphony. When I started this project the sub-title of the 1st part was that famous quote from Dante "Lasciate ogni speranza, voi ch'entrate" . I abandoned that. Now, what do you think (and others)? Who can give this symphony a good title? Or none at all. We already have "Italian", "Tragic" , "Titan", "Eroica", I can't think of any other names right now.

    Revelation if you don't believe it or not, if some so called christian groups take that book as some means to fight over, it still is a great story filled with human despair, suffering, joy and victory. Don't be saddened, life it too short for that.

    I sincerely hope you enjoy the music,



    [PS. to all others, from this weekend I will rebuild my computer system to cope for the next couple of years, e.g. other soundcard, more memory, etc.... so there is a chance you won't get an answer that quick]

  7. #7
    Senior Member Tom_Davis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Ellendale, ND

    Re: Symphony 1 - The New World

    Quote Originally Posted by rbowser- View Post

    I need to ask - "The New World Symphony"---haven't we been given that before? - It doesn't seem wise to me to duplicate an already famous name/designation.
    The title of the original piece to which you refer is "From the New World" indicating the source of the thematic material.

  8. #8

    Re: Symphony 1 - The New World


    I started listening to the 4th just because I had already listened to the first 3 in the past. I got a few minutes in and figured I better go back and listen to a bit of the other movements to get caught back up and refresh my memory.

    Well the first movement just ended and now I guess I just have to go thru them all again.

    I think you did a bit more in the re-rendering of these then just a little tweak here and there. It sounds great.

    The last movment opened up with a bang. Just my kind of music. But then you mentioned Prokofiev and he is my favorite composer of all time.

    My Father was a preacher and because of that I have read the Bible cover to cover many many times. I hope it is not the truth. I have major problems with a God that creates people and then because they behave the way their body and brain (designed by this same God), tells them to behave, they need to be thrown into a lake of fire to be tortured for all of eternity.

    All of the Biblical scholars I have known throughout my life see The Revelations (along with The Book of Daniel and others) as a foretelling of the future. It is interesting to note that 2 of John's visions we know will come to pass. The moon will turn red and the oceans will boil. When the sun begins its journey towards becoming a Red Giant and expands in size, the moon will become so hot it will turn red as the oceans on Earth boil away.

    Humanity (at least in its current form) will certainly not be around to see that.

    This is a wonderful piece and now you deserve a good beer and a short vacation.

    Well done

    "Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one." Albert Einstein


  9. #9
    Senior Member rpearl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    Re: Symphony 1 - The New World

    Wonderful first movement. I will try and hear the others, as time permits. But this first is very powerful - a moving arc, that kept my attention throughout. The use of the solo violin is such a lovely idea amidst such large orchestral forces. This sia major accomplishment (although you probably know that...) Beautifully, beautifully done!

    Thanks for sharing this.
    Ron Pearl





  10. #10

    Re: Symphony 1 - The New World

    I got through the whole thing. As you pointed out it really needs a couple listenings (at least). Very impressive. Again I admire the way you transition in and out of very traditional tonality and a "confused" harmonic language; really wonderful.

    The textures are top notch and timed very well. Sometimes a bombastic tutti sound juxtaposed by a solo oboe followed by strings.

    Really wonderful story you've told here. I guess you've retold it actually

    With admiration,
    Steve Winkler

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