What makes a good slow melody piece?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by ScaryFlugel, Mar 23, 2005.

  1. ScaryFlugel

    ScaryFlugel Member

    I've only been to one slow melody contest in my life so I don't really know the form. What do people think are the important things to bear in mind when choosing a piece? What sort of length of piece? What do adjudicators of such events look for?

    Does it matter if it's basically easy (but rather nice) as long as it is played well?

    I have a piece I would like to play, but it's hardly more than a minute and a bit long, doesn't go high (c'mon, i'm a flugel player!). The alternative is some old standard which is nice enough but could be considered hackneyed...

    The contest is a local association contest, but it will have some decent players going (as opposed to me, before anyone says...)(and i'm only going for my own satisfaction, no-one's life depends on it!)

    Any ideas?
  2. mikelyons

    mikelyons Supporting Member

    It should be slowish, lyrical and have a good melody. Not necessarily slushy/romantic/yeuch, but nice, probably diatonic and very expressive.

    Lark in the clear air, aria, vitae lux (solo arrangement)

    There will be high demands for control and expressiveness, tuning and probably range. Lots of dynamic width. Some twiddly bits, but not much. It's not about twiddles, so don't do air varie.
  3. Chris Sanders

    Chris Sanders Active Member

    You cant go wrong with Rusalka's Song to the Moon, should be great on Flug... Its probably played on Cornet at every slow melody contest there is, but it a great piece, beautiful melody, and if played right any adjudicator will love it...
  4. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    I would choose something that you like listening to and just happens to show off your better musical points when playing!
  5. DublinBass

    DublinBass Supporting Member

    If its the LBBA contest you're doing, I'm glad somebody else still doesn't know what they are going to play as I am in the same boat ;)

    The other thing to take into account is I think for that contest there is no accompaniment for slow melody, which can be both good and bad. Good because an Eb instrument can nick a Bb solo or visa versa, bad if there are alot of gaps in the solo.
  6. Hornblower RN

    Hornblower RN Member

    If you are looking for a good flugel solo with piano accompaniment try and obtain Flower Song from Carmen arranged by Darrol Barry especially for David Pogson and Black Dyke. Goes up to a top A at pp......very nice solo!!
  7. flugelgal

    flugelgal Active Member

    I think the most important factor is to choose something that shows off your tone - after all, the flugel is the most beautiful sounding instrument in the band! ;)

    I always wanted to play "The Way We Were" in a solo contest but there isn't a piano accompaniment for it - that would be ideal here if no accompaniment is the flavour of the day! (Though what do you do in the bars rest????)
  8. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    You have to pick something that suits your style of playing and as Kirsty says, your tone. When I were a lad :rolleyes: I had a fair bit of solo contest success with Greig's "Solveg's Song" which sounds great on flugel. It has two octave A to A jumps though which are always interesting ;) . I think though, if you play the verision in the Harry Mortimer soloists book (am I thinking correctly here?) the top A is optional.

    I would think that a piece only one minute long would be too short - the adjudicator is almost sure to write something like: "I would've liked to have heard more of you" but if your only going for you own enjoyment, and you really want to play that piece then play it! Maybe you could do the old "DC and run through again" trick to make it longer?

    If it is the LBBA solo contest, you might see me there (not sure if I'm going or not) but be sure to buy plenty of food and cups of tea as my band is running the catering ;) :biggrin:
  9. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

  10. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    To listen to songs, maybe subscribe to sites like this example below ...


    (p.s., there is a good MIDI transcription of Rienzi on this site!)
  11. mattster

    mattster New Member

    play a piece that shows off your strong points.try not to use a piece that a has lot of bars rest, your performance will not flow.play to the audience not the adjudicator.take your time when getting ready to play,making sure the stand is right and you are comfortable.take on some water have a drink before you play.if you are more comfortable sitting down to play then sit down,you dont have to follow everybody else's lead.most important is enjoy the experience.there is an old cornet solo called"i hear you calling me"it should work well on flugel.
    good luck

  12. Bit off topic but does anyone know where i can get Rusalka's Song to the Moon from? Googled it but cant seem to find anything...
  13. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    There are 4 versions listed on justmusic:


    I just clicked on "Find" and entered "Dvborak" in the composer line ;)
  14. ScaryFlugel

    ScaryFlugel Member

    Thanks for all your suggestions, some good ideas there. Like the sound of the top A's, if only I could be certain of getting them!

    Also, play to the audience not the adjudicator - I like that tip.

    For those who guessed, yes, it is the LBBA contest, and there is no piano accompaniment. So maybe 'the way we were' would do the trick.

    Keep em coming - and thanks again!
  15. HBB

    HBB Active Member

    When is the LBBA ContesT?
  16. ScaryFlugel

    ScaryFlugel Member

    10th April 2005, but the closing date has passed.
    however, feel free to come and cheer us along! (we are entering a 4tet, a 10 year old slow melody and an old person's slow melody ;-))
  17. ScaryFlugel

    ScaryFlugel Member

  18. Chris Sanders

    Chris Sanders Active Member

    Depends who plays it... As a T.Horn player it pains me to say it, but when played really well, the tuba is gorgeous sounding...
  19. mikelyons

    mikelyons Supporting Member

    If you are still looking, I have the Marcello Oboe Concerto in a brass arrangement - flugel solo. If you have sibelius I can send you the solo part. No rests apart from the beginning and end.As it's not published yet, I would appreciate it if you wouldn't pass it around.
  20. ScaryFlugel

    ScaryFlugel Member

    That would be super smashing great, Mr Lyons, sir, and I promise not to pass it around. I have Sib.