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Comparing and Contrasting two pieces of music.

By hashthedealer Sep 30, 2003 584 Words
In the essay I will compare and contrast "Gavotte" from the Classical Symphony by Prokofiev and the "Fantasy on Japanese Woodblocks" by Alan Hovhannes. I felt different about both pieces, but I did see a couple similarities. And that's what I'm going to explain about in this essay: both the differences and the similarities of the two pieces.

I'll start by explaining how I felt about both pieces. The "Gavotte" had a very calming affect on me. For a minute I felt as if I was in the wonderful jungle sitting and listening to a peaceful waterfall and finding peace to my soul. But it also made me tap my fingers and feet.

The second piece by the Hovhannes had awoken a totally different emotion in me, instead of feeling happy and peaceful I felt scared, uncertain, and had a feeling that something bad was about to happen. After a while I started to get annoyed of all the repeated high notes. But I still tapped my fingers according to the Marimba. Unfortunately I didn't have any intellectual or spiritual responses for both the pieces.

I will now explain the elements of Music to show how both the pieces where played differently and how they were played the same.

The beat of the "Gavotte" was not too fast or too slow, more or less in the middle. Although it did have a "jump" once in a while. The rhythm was pretty lazy and simple because it had quite a bit of repetition. But it isn't as obvious as the very repetitive rhythm of the second piece by Alan Hovhannes. The "Gavotte" had a skip and step melody , which means that it notes would jump back and forth on the scale. The harmony was thick and had a rich sound to it. It had a block harmony. The timbre would have a occasional jump once in a while. During most of the piece it had a relatively low level of dynamic contrast.

The "Fantasy on Japanese Woodblocks" was the strangest piece I've ever heard because it sounded like a mess, but at the same time it was very interesting. What made this piece so annoying was the continuous jump of pitches and the repetitive rhythm accompanied by a fast jumpy beat. This piece also had a skip and step melody. The harmony had a counter melody, which helped make the repetition of the piece slightly less obvious. The timbre was hard and rough. The notes were hard and disjointed most of the time, it never really came down softly.

After listening to both pieces, I can without doubt say that I liked the piece by Prokofiev better than the one by the Hovhannes, because I would rather be happy than scared, and I believe that I speak for everyone in my class when I say that. But nevertheless, both the pieces were excellent in their own way. Both pieces were thick and repetitive, although the piece by Hovhannes was a lot more repetitive than the piece by Prokofiev. But then again, the 'repetitioness' is what that created the theme for that piece.

It's no doubt that music from different parts of the world will be different, The "Gavotte" and the "Fantasy on Japanese Woodblocks" are a great example of music from different parts of the world. But each and every one of them will have unique beauty, something that will make it stand out from the crowd, after all, who would like to live in a world where everything is the same!

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