Assignment Three – Formative Feedback
Student name: Suncica Lazic
Student number: 516098
Course/Unit: From Present to Past
Assignment number: 3
Type of tutorial: Written
Well done on another successful assignment, I very much enjoyed reading your essay and reflective account. Moving forward, I have included some areas to focus on, particularly in relation to your Listening Log, as detailed below, in order to bring things up to date and continue towards the completion of the course and formal assessment. Well done.
Feedback on assignment
Subject based knowledge and understanding, context, communication
This was an interesting essay to read. You have clearly enjoyed this section of the course and the depth of your research and knowledge is well reflected in your writing. You communicate your ideas in a very good and engaging manner. Your references are very well selected, both in content and source, and adequately augment the points that you make. Your work is also well referenced, and in an appropriate academic style, which is excellent to see. Be careful of the (very) occasional spelling error, but on the whole, the writing is of a high standard.
Subject Based Knowledge:
You have demonstrated a very good knowledge and understanding of the issues surrounding the use of folk songs in music. It was interesting that you decided to focus on two composers who used nationalistic elements in their music in what could be considered to be a positive and inspiring way. It was also excellent to see that you have briefly summed up an opposing use of nationalism in music, and its purpose.
Whilst you discuss the overall respect that Vaughan Williams and Albéniz seem to have for their particular use of folk idioms it would have been good to add exactly why each composer may have included these elements (i.e. going back to the assignment rubric: ‘Can you find evidence of a specifically nationalist motivation behind your chosen pieces or were the composers you have considered simply responding to their own musical heritage?’). You were nearly there, as you allude to it in places but it could have been drawn together and stated explicitly. Perhaps this was what you intended in your summary which included the themes of ‘preservation of
custom, traditions and originality’, but don’t forget to directly answer a question if it is in the assignment rubric.
For each piece you have included a wealth of information on instrumentation and thematic material using appropriate musical terminology. It was particularly pleasing to see the inclusion of a further question: “what is it then that makes ‘Fantasia on Greensleves’ sound so English?” It was a good question to ask and you have chosen to answer that by discussing the instrumentation of the piece combined with other compositional devices, drawing together and synthesising information about the whole piece in order to support your argument. Well done.
The inclusion of tonal details including specific modes used in the respective works was also very important to include as it is often fundamental to any discussion about folk music, with uses being highly characteristic of very different national ‘sounds’.
Context, reflective thinking, critical thinking, analysis , stylistic
Your reflective account for this assignment was an interesting read. You certainly won’t be the first, or the last, person to struggle with how to respond to Richard Wagner’s musical life and works when taking into account his personal views and writings! However, much interesting discussion can come from such areas and you have written very perceptively about thoughtfully about it. With regard to your comments about generating a lot of research notes, I fully sympathise, however you must endeavour to include entries on your blog. Even if you choose to limit entries and include only the most relevant information or topics that are of the most interest to you, it is of great importance to keep making regular entries and will save you a lot of work in the long run. Remember that the blog (which forms the Stylistic Awareness portion of your formal assessment) is worth up to 25% of your final mark! That said, you are clearly aware of the situation and I suggest tweaking your working methods so that you make regular entries as part of your study. If you can update your blog for this part of the course, I can comment on that along with your feedback for the next assignment. If you have any concerns or questions though regarding the blog etc., please let me know.
Continue listening to a wide range of music, making entries to your log (taking into account my comments from the previous section). Focus on the suggestions in the course materials, but you can also explore your own avenues.
Pointers for the next assignment
Part Four looks at music of a Classical era style. The assignment will be one focussing on listening and drawing on knowledge of stylistic elements and compositional approaches. Thoroughly research the assignment, taking care to periodically refer back to the assignment brief (on page 151) and any specific areas or questions to address in your response.
Tutor: Chris Lawry
Date: 15th October 2017
Next assignment due: 31st January 2018