Assignment One – [Pt. I] – Reflective Account

Assignment One – [Pt. I] – Reflective account


My first Assignment has been off to a bit of a rocky start. A family situation caused me to have to delay the course work. As a consequence I ended up rushing it and taking shortcuts. I skipped over reading the student handbook and assignment requirements and delved straight into the research. Bad plan! I wrote 8000 words about my chosen contemporary composer, only to discover that I should submit 500. Editing down 8000 into 500 turned out to be a gargantuan and mind bending task. I had to loose all the quotes I had painstakingly collected and the whole structure of what I had written had to change. Losing all this time editing also lead to me not having time to make an online blog. I will type up and collate all my hand written work notes, listening log, research, exercises and reflections and will submit future assignment in an online format.

Another aspect which suffered is that I did not have time to go to any live performances. I do go to concerts frequently. Being a sound engineer I also experience live music daily, but it would have been preferable to go to concerts with specific exercises in mind. The spaces we choose to perform music in, say a lot of the intention behind the music. Space interacts with both the sound and performance to create a story. Exploring how we share music with each other is significant. The choice of space has social and
creative implications. The degree of immersive-ness has a profound effect on what’s being communicated. I think how we choose to communicate something is very much linked to what we’re trying to communicate.

Working with the course material has been a real pleasure. I already had an interest in contemporary composers, but my knowledge was patchy and restricted to composers and styles I like. It has been expanded to include a much wider repertoire. I listened in detail to all the music listed (the entire pieces) in the course work, the Appendix and a lot more aside. I have discovered several sub genres I was not aware of. It’s also been great getting an overview and a social/historical perspective. I am really looking forward to learning about the other eras so that I can gain an even deeper understanding of the development of Western Art Music as a whole.

The film music project was particularly close to my heart since I aspire to write for film and games. I do enjoy analysing film scores and trying to learn from great composers. I think it’s a great way to learn. The notation exercises are also very helpful. I believe in having a strong foundation.

The last thing I want to mention is that I greatly appreciate that the course is promoting developing your own opinions and identity. I want to develop my critical ear even further, but also learn the skill of being able to defend my opinions in an informed and professional manner.