How do I begin a composition? How do I score top marks in my coursework?

Composition can often seem a daunting task, and many GCSE students simply do not know how where to begin. In truth, GCSE composition can be broken down into manageable, methodical steps. Examiners are looking to see if you understand various musical structures such as: Melodic Devicesantecedent and consequent phrases (call and answer), antiphonal phrases, 'talking' between the various instrumentsBalanced phrasesFormA distinguishable structure, such as A-B-A etc.Extended HarmonyDominant seventh chords,Augmented sixth chords, Diminished chordsSimple modulations - to the dominant, subdominant, relative major/minor etc. I usually encourage students to sing a melody, and then write it down. Then, I ask them to write down the triads that fit that melody - this process gets the ball rolling!

Answered by Patrick D. Music tutor


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