John Adams Pharrygian Gate Analysis

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a. John Adams ‘Phrygian Gate’ John Adams composed this work in 1977-1978 and commissioned for Mack McCray, American pianist. McCray first performed this piece March 17, 1997. Phrygian gates is Adams’s largest solo piano piece, and incorporates a lots of similar techniques and processes as its companion piece, China Gates, but on larger scale. It contains a huge range of dynamics, timbre, texture, and virtuoso techniques. The duration of Phrygian gates is for 22 minutes, modulating by the cycle of fifth rather than stepwise The well tempered Clavier. Phrygian gates use the same gating structure as China Gates, with each new gates coinciding with a change of mode. (Lankov, 2013) The structure is in the form of a modulating square…show more content…
Rapid doubling thirds: many pianists seen to have similar technical issues. Doubling Thirds is a kind of the hardest pianistic technique. It needs to consider fingering and separating voices for practice. First, teacher helps student’s fingering. For example, once upper voice in right hand is played with 3-4th fingers, lower voice has to be played with thumbs and 2nd fingers. However, If student feels tension on his wrist and arms, fingering should be changed to 4-5 fingers in upper voice and 2-1fingers in lower voice (Measure 114-116) 3.Rotation of wrists and cluster: Tone cluster is a musical chord comprising at least three adjacent tones in scale. It is important techniques when playing contemporary pieces. To play cluster passages below, students need to have flexible wrists to avoid tension. b. Philip Glass ‘Piano Etude’ This piece is effective for a student who is between beginner and intermediate level. Even though sight reading looks difficult for the beginners, there are simple and repetitive passages as a feature of minimalist. Usually, the beginner’s repertoires are limited in pieces of classical and romantic era. However, many contemporary composer including Philip Glass write music for beginner. In addition, minimalist music consists of extremely simple and repetitive motives, so it can be alternatively educational

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