Performing Media

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Performing Media

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Performing Media

  1. 1. Performing Media:Instruments, Voices, Ensembles Chapter 5
  2. 2. Musical Acoustics: The Science of Sound Vocal Oral Air cords Waves EarEnergy Vibrating cavity Ear Resonating airsource element canals chamber
  3. 3. Musical Instruments• Can do four things: – 1. Produce their characteristic sound – 2. Modify their basic timbre – 3. Play different pitches – 4. Start and stop their sounds
  4. 4. Categories of Musical Instruments: Overview• String Instruments: vibrating strings are source of sound• Brass Instruments: vibrating lips are source of sound• Woodwind Instruments: vibrating reeds OR air blown over a mouth hole are sources of sound
  5. 5. Categories of Musical Instruments: Overview• Percussion Instruments: sources of sound (examples) – vibrating plates (cymbals) – vibrating bars (marimba, xylophone) – vibrating stretched skins, called membranes (timpani, drums) – other vibrating objects (claves, triangle, maracas) – struck with the hands or with various mallets
  6. 6. Categories of Musical Instruments: Overview• Keyboard Instruments: sources of sound – plucked vibrating strings (harpsichord) – hammered vibrating strings (piano), – air columns in pipes (organ) – steel bars struck with hammers (celesta)• Electronic Instruments: Electrical currents create moving transistors that transmit sounds through speakers or headphones
  7. 7. Families of Instruments: Bowed String Instruments• Violin: shortest strings, highest range (tessitura): player holds to neck• Viola: longer strings, richer sound: player holds to neck, 5-note lower range• Cello: longer strings, rich, low, mellow sound: player sits and holds between legs, octave lower then viola• String Bass: very long strings: very low sound: player stands or sits on stool, tuned in 4ths
  8. 8. Families of Instruments: Plucked String Instruments• Harp: strings run parallel to the resonating body of the instrument• Lutes: Instruments with a neck that is separate from the resonating body – Guitar: six strings, all the same length, but of different thickness – Mandolin: 4 paired strings, all same length – Banjo: 4 or 5 strings; 5th string may be shorter
  9. 9. Strings: Interesting Information• Hollow body of instrument provides amplification• Use of vibrato• Placement of fingers on fretboard allow for different pitch production• Double or triple stops-two or more pitches sounded at the same time
  10. 10. Strings: Interesting Information • May be bowed or plucked (pizzicato) • May use a “mute” • Violins are divided into 1st & 2nd parts • String bass has many names: double bass, contrabass, and standing bass
  11. 11. Woodwinds • Produce sound by reed vibration • Pitches produced by opening and closing of tone holes or keys(lengthening and shortening the air column) • Use of different tonguing techniques(double or flutter)
  12. 12. Families of Instruments: Woodwinds With Reeds• Single reeds – Clarinet: Keyed woodwind with straight wooden body – Saxophone: Keyed woodwind with bent metal body• Double reeds – Oboe: Keyed woodwind with straight wooden body – Bassoon: Keyed woodwind, longer than oboe, with straight wooden body
  13. 13. Families of Instruments:Woodwinds Without Reeds • Flute: air moves over an open hole and vibrates in metal tube • Piccolo: like flute, but shorter (so higher-pitched)
  14. 14. Woodwinds: Interesting Information• Modern flutes are not made of wood – They are played by blowing air across the hole (transverse flutes) – Earlier versions of the flute were wooden and were played by blowing into the tube (recorders)• Saxophones aren’t usually found in an orchestra• Orchestras may have an even lower woodwind instrument called contrabassoon
  15. 15. Woodwinds: Interesting Information• Many woodwind Instruments are transposing – The notes written on the page are NOT the notes that are sounded when played – These include clarinets and saxophones• Others are non-transposing: the notes written are what sound – These include piccolos, flutes, oboes, English horns, and bassoons
  16. 16. Woodwinds: Interesting Information• Early woodwind instruments had holes that were covered with the fingers• Theobald Boehm developed a keying system for woodwind instruments that made them much more versatile and easier to play – Opening and closing the holes with the keys makes the tubes longer or shorter, creating different pitches• Many woodwind instruments come in a variety of sizes
  17. 17. Families of Instruments: Valved Brass Instruments• How Valves Work: Player depresses piston valves and releases them, opening and closing off parts of the tube; – The longer the tube, the lower the sound – The shorter the tube, the higher the sound• Trumpet: players’ lips vibrate air in brass tube, “buzzing”; valves open and close• French Horn: players lips vibrate air in brass tube; rotary valves open and close
  18. 18. Families of Instruments: Valved Brass Instruments• Baritone Horn: players’ lips vibrate air in brass tube; tube is longer than trumpet and French Horn, so range is lower; valves open and close• Tuba: players’ lips vibrate air in brass tube; tube is longer than trumpet, French Horn, and Baritone Horn, so range is even lower; valves open and close
  19. 19. Families of Instruments: A Unique Brass Instrument• Trombone: has no valves – Player pulls slide in an out to lengthen and shorten the tube; longer tube = lower pitches; shorter tube = higher pitches – Trombone is considered a “low brass” instrument, but not as low as the baritone horn or tuba
  20. 20. Brasses: Interesting Information• Some brass instruments are transposing (trumpet, French horn); some are not (trombone, tuba)• All brass instruments have “mutes” which can soften the sound, double/triple tounging
  21. 21. Percussion• Anything you can beat on, shake, rattle, roll
  22. 22. Families of Instruments: Percussion• Two basic subcategories: – Idiophones: those which create sound by striking the object itself (e.g., triangles, cymbals) – Membranophones: those which create sound by striking a membrane or head stretch over a vibrating chamber
  23. 23. Families of Instruments: Percussion• Another subcategorization of percussion Instruments: – Pitched Percussion Instruments: those which create recognizable pitches – Nonpitched Percussion Instruments: those which create sounds with no recognizable pitch
  24. 24. Pitched & Nonpitched MembranophonesPITCHED NONPITCHED• Timpani: Small kettle • Snare drum: playeddrums, eached tuned to with sticks; rattlesa specific note (called snares) are attached underneath the head • Bass drum: large drum played with large soft mallet
  25. 25. Some Pitched Idiophones• Xylophone: wooden bars struck with mallets• Vibraphone: Metal bars struck with mallets; amplified electrically• Glockenspiel: small metal bars struck with mallets• Orchestra Bells: a series of increasingly longer metal tubes, struck with a mallet
  26. 26. Some Nonpitched Idiophones• Cymbals: metal plates struck with mallets or crashed together• Triangle: metal triangular shaped instrument, struck with metal mallet• Claves: 2 wooden sticks, struck together
  27. 27. Percussion: Interesting Information• Most Percussionists (except the timpani player) usually play many instruments.• Watch the percussion section during a concert; they are always running around!• Percussion instruments can be played in more than one way.• Percussionists tend to be experts in one of three areas: drums, timpani, or “mallets.”
  28. 28. Keyboard Instruments• Sound produced: – Hammer strikes a string – Quill plucks a string – Air released through pipes• Pitch depends on keys struck• Can produce many sounds
  29. 29. The Keyboard Instruments: The Organ• Largest and most powerful keyboard instrument• Air pumped through “ranks” of pipes which are opened closed by depressing keys on keyboard• Pipes create sounds that mimic many other instruments: woodwinds, brasses, strings.• Early organs used people to pump bellows.• Modern organs used electricity to move air.
  30. 30. Keyboard Instruments• Organ – Has several manuals – Pedalboard played with feet – “Stops”-knobs that change tone colors – Dynamics changed by adding or reducing number of pipes• Accordion • Free steel rods controlled by treble keyboard • Bass keyboard with buttons • Air from bellows make reed vibrate
  31. 31. The Keyboard Instruments: The Harpsichord• Small, delicate instrument• Has two keyboards or “manuals”• Black & white keys opposite of piano• Keys operate a plectrum (a pick-like device made of leather or a bird quill), which plucks the string.• The plectrum produces a twang-like sound.• Knobs that affect coupling of strings• The player cannot vary the dynamics of the sound on a harpsichord.• Lost popularity around 1750
  32. 32. The Keyboard Instruments: The Piano • Larger and more robust than the harpsichord • Keys activate hammers that strike strings • Full range of dynamics • Pianos became very popular instruments for the home; all “educated” women could play.
  33. 33. Keyboard Instruments• Piano – 1st constructed about 1709 – Soundboard underneath strings amplifies sound – 88 keys – Grand vs upright – Three pedals(damper, soft pedal, sostenuto) – Very versatile
  34. 34. Electronic Instruments• Keyboards: can produce a large variety of sounds – Played like regular piano – Usually have about 66 keys, rather than standard 88 – Can produce rhythms, harmonies, etc. because of built in computers
  35. 35. Electronic Instruments• Synthesizers: created to imitate the sounds of acoustic instruments electronically – Very sophisticated, appeared 1955 – Can be hooked up to computers with MIDI (standardized computer interface for music) – Analog synthesis – Digital Frequency modulation – Sampling – Effects Devices
  36. 36. The Human Voice
  37. 37. The Human Voice• Sound production: vibration of vocal chords in the larnyx, action of diaphragm pushing air through the larnyx• Basic timbre: depends upon shape of oral/nasal cavities• Pitch: determined by amount of tension in vocal chords and length of vocal chords
  38. 38. Basic Voice Classifications• Soprano: the highest female voice• Mezzo-Soprano: a moderately high voice with a more mellow timbre• Alto: a low female voice, heavier and darker than mezzo• Tenor: the highest male voice• Baritone: the middle range male voice, with darker timbre than tenor• Bass: the lowest male voice, dark timbre
  39. 39. Some Specialized Voices: Sopranos• Coloratura Soprano: high range with great virtuosity (can sing many fast notes)• Dramatic Soprano: powerful voice for very dramatic opera roles• Lyric Soprano-lighter voice for sweeter opera roles or solo recital singing
  40. 40. Some Specialized Voices: Tenors• Robusto Tenor: a full, powerful tenor voice for strong operatic roles• Lyric Tenor: a lighter voice, for smooth lyrical singing roles• Heroic Tenor: a powerful, expressive, virtuostic voice with great agility (can sing many fast notes)
  41. 41. Some Specialized Voices: Basses and Baritones• Profondo: deep range, powerful voice for solemn roles• Cantate: smooth, lyrical singing voice for lighter roles• Buffo: agile voice for comic roles
  42. 42. Young Persons Guide to the Orchestra, Op. 34(1946)-Benjamin Britten• Englishman Britten wrote as introduction to the instruments of the orchestra• Used theme by Henry Purcell in thirteen variations
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