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Last updated:

May 19, 2022

Duration:

Unlimited Duration

FREE

This course includes:

Unlimited Duration

Badge on Completion

Certificate of completion

Unlimited Duration

Description

Explore what's involved when musicians create a performance from musical notation in this free online course.

Would you like to know more about what musicians do in rehearsals and performances? Would you like to learn different techniques for listening to and understanding music?

This free course provides a general introduction to how to understand a musical score, and insights into what professional musicians do with the notation that these contain. You'll learn how to connect the notation you see with the music you hear, from short familiar melodies to a full orchestral score.

Focusing on works by Mozart, Schubert, Beethoven and Mahler, we'll introduce you to a pianist, a small chamber group and a conductor who will explain how they create memorable performances from the notes on the page.

Requirements

This course is intended for anyone with an interest in music. You do not need to be able to read musical notation or play an instrument.

Course learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • Understand the reasons for different musical notations
  • Understand the relationship between notation and performance
  • Navigate printed music
  • Listen to a simple musical example alongside its notation.

Course Curriculum

    • Introduction 00:15:00
    • Types of musical score 00:20:00
    • How do musical scores work? 00:30:00
    • Some things notations do 00:10:00
    • What should a musical score capture? 00:10:00
    • The ear-eye connection 00:15:00
    • Introducing pitch and rhythm 00:05:00
    • A little bit of history 00:15:00
    • Working with neumes 00:15:00
    • Guido of Arezzo 00:20:00
    • Organising time 00:10:00
    • Finding the beat 00:10:00
    • Close listening 00:15:00
    • What are you listening for? 00:10:00
    • Comparing notes: reading a musical score 00:15:00
    • Single line notation in context – the bigger picture 00:15:00
    • Week 1 summary 00:10:00
    • Introduction 00:15:00
    • Variations on a theme 00:10:00
    • Getting started with piano scores 00:15:00
    • Melody and harmony 00:10:00
    • Texture 00:15:00
    • Texture in big band jazz 00:10:00
    • Discussing Mozart 00:15:00
    • Comparing notes: the kaleidoscope of piano textures 00:10:00
    • Some new symbols 00:15:00
    • Fitting sound and silence together 00:15:00
    • Visualising textures in a score 00:10:00
    • Practising your skills 00:10:00
    • Fitting it all together 00:10:00
    • Week 2 summary 00:05:00
    • Introduction 00:10:00
    • Working collaboratively with a score 00:15:00
    • Introducing new genres 00:10:00
    • Working with instruments 00:15:00
    • Instrumental colour 00:10:00
    • New textures 00:10:00
    • Instrumental tone colour 00:07:00
    • Layering and balancing sounds 00:05:00
    • Layered textures 00:20:00
    • The Trout revisited 00:10:00
    • Introducing jazz instrumentation and notation 00:10:00
    • Big band timbres and textures 00:10:00
    • Putting it all together 00:20:00
    • Week 3 summary 00:10:00
    • Introduction 00:25:00
    • Score order 00:10:00
    • Staves and systems 00:10:00
    • A conductor discusses: orchestral rehearsals 00:10:00
    • Coordinating movement 00:15:00
    • Synthesising sight and sound 00:15:00
    • Following the score 00:15:00
    • A conductor discusses: developing a performance 00:07:00
    • Mahler – what to look out for 00:20:00
    • Keeping track – Mahler Symphony No.1, third movement 00:25:00
    • Following a motif 00:25:00
    • A conductor discusses: interpretive approaches 00:20:00
    • Double bar 00:10:00
    • End-of-course round-up 00:15:00

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