Assignment Two – Formative Feedback

Student name: Suncica Lazic

Student number: 516098

Course/Unit: From Present to Past

Assignment number: 2

Type of tutorial: Written

Overall Comments:

For this assignment you are asked to submit: a diagram or spider map showing the connections and contexts of your chosen style; an account of your research on the major exponents of the style and your responses to chosen works (c.1000 words); and a reflective account (c.500 words) documenting your listening and learning progress in Part Two including your personal and critical reflections. You have followed the rubric and presented some well researched work. I have included some thoughts in my feedback below which should help you continue to develop successfully during the course.

Assessment potential: Assignment 2

I understand your aim is to go for the Music Degree and that you plan to submit your work for assessment at the end of this course. I believe you have the potential to pass at assessment. In order to meet all assessment criteria, there are certain areas you will need to focus on, which I will outline in my feedback. 

Feedback on assignment Subject based knowledge and understanding, context, communication Spider Diagram

Research and subject based knowledge:

Your spider diagram clearly shows your ability to gather knowledge through reading and research. It is very clearly laid out and, although you have included a great deal of information in a relatively small space, it accurately and concisely conveys the important connections of the style. This is a very useful way to organise your research and thoughts about a subject and here you have well demonstrated your understanding of the subject and context, and also communicated your ideas and knowledge in a good manner.

Communication and Critical evaluation skills:

Ways in which such a diagram could be expanded on could be with the inclusion of words/phrases relating to the main properties and philosophy of the style, dates of important milestones, or specific works. You have found other composers that have been influenced by parts of impressionism; who have incorporated elements of the style in their own, non-impressionistic music. It is worth remembering this adoption of ideas as you progress through the course. As you have indicated in your listening and learning log, you are finding styles of music that don’t initially appeal to you, or are wholly unfamiliar, and when you critically reflect on such styles you may well find, like the composers using elements of impressionism in their own work, that there is something interesting and useful to take away and use again, in another context, regardless of the overall final style.

 

ACCOUNT OF A MUSICAL STYLE

Subject based knowledge andCritical evaluation skills:

Your account is well written and you have included the major composers writing in the style; Enriques Granados was also an interesting choice to include, as although his style is often thought of as late-Romantic and nationalistic, his work, along with others, includes elements that can be attributed to ‘Spanish Impressionism’, and it is helpful to compare and contrast
these works with that of the more well-known French Impressionists. It may have been useful to refer to some of the other important pieces within your essay in order to draw similarities or differences between the approaches to Impressionism by the different composers, although, I am mindful that the assignment rubric doesn’t explicitly state this, only that you should research and write about at least four examples in your learning log, which you have done very successfully. You have given a good account of the style including specific musical examples within your chosen focal piece in order to back up points you make about timbre, harmony and suchlike, using appropriate musical terminology. As stated above, this is where bringing in elements from your other researched pieces would have been highly beneficial in order to further back up points raised about the style.

Research and communication:

It is good to see that you are using points and references to academically back up your writing and the account is well laid out with clear referencing, neatly fitting within the stipulated word count. Be careful that you don’t overuse small paragraphs however, there are occasions where you can bring several statements closer together to form larger passages. Your reference list shows a good range of sources that you have drawn from during your research and the quality of your sources is also generally good. Moving forwards, it may also be useful to expand on any personal views on the style and responses to the music referred to along with specific examples.

Research:

Context, reflective thinking, critical thinking, analysis, stylistic awareness

Your reflection on this assignment was good to read. It seems as though you are now adapting to the mode of study and finding the right working balance and appropriate depth of research for this level. It is a sign of true engagement with your studies and subject that you are wanting to focus on areas in greater depth, with a questioning mind, finding more and more areas of study that you will like to follow up on at a later date. This is another reason why making entries in your listening and learning log is important, it not only documents and demonstrates your learning journey but also serves as a memory aid for you to pick back up on areas of interest in the future.

Listening & Learning Logs or Blogs

Stylistic awareness, context, reflective thinking, critical thinking, analysis

I enjoyed reading your learning log and your reflective account. It is really good to hear that you are finding studying styles and composers in a greater depth intellectually satisfying. Use this curiosity to your advantage during the remaining parts of the course, exploring the subjects introduced, researching from a variety of sources and listening to a wide range of music from not only the suggested works but also other unfamiliar pieces. It is important to study unfamiliar styles, and also those that are not immediately appealing to you, as it challenges your own limitations and expectations and expands your overall
knowledge of music and musical history.
In the next parts of the course you will find many more of the scores available from libraries and also on the internet, on websites such as www.imslp.org. Following the scores for recordings will greatly benefit your studies but also help you to become more familiar with notation and other conventions aiding you in your next courses in the music degree pathway. Your log for this part of the course is neat, easy to read and well laid out. The supporting projects and exercises were very well written, I particularly liked your version of 4’33” and
you have made some lively and perceptive observations; sometimes the lines between music, sonic art, and performance art can be very much blurred and the discussion and debate around this is always interesting. Well done.

 

Suggested reading/listening

Context

Continue listening to a wide range of music. Focus on the suggestions in the course materials, but you can also explore your own avenues, but remember to include as much as you can in your listening log. Part Three looks at music from the nineteenth century. For the assignment, you have the choice to write about either the use of folk songs/dance rhythms or the history, development
and usage of an instrument widely used in the Romantic or Classical eras. Thoroughly research your chosen topic, taking care to refer back to the assignment brief (on page 125) and any specific areas or questions to address in your response.

 

Tutor: Chris Lawry

Date: 30th May 2017

Next assignment due: 30th August 2017