Composition

Composition lessons are available for pupils who wish to explore the creation and development of their own musical ideas, plus advanced level and early-career composers seeking professional guidance and mentorship.

In addition to examining the aesthetic and technical aspects of composition, students are encouraged to listen to a wide variety of musical styles, particularly major works from the C20th and C21st such as those given in the Listening room alongside pursuing their own imaginative, creative ideas and vocabulary at the piano, or, related technology in the case of electronic music.

Following fifteen years music editorial experience as a freelance music typesetter, proof-reader and editor, specialist knowledge in-line with the current professional standards advocated by major music publishing houses can be provided in terms of musical notation and presentation matters such as the layout, design and spacing of both handwritten and typeset scores, including the formatting of ensemble or orchestral parts.

Students pursuing composition lessons as part of their GCSE or A-level coursework are strongly encouraged to typeset their work using Sibelius software or produce a neatly handwritten fair copy in either pencil or ink, in addition to seeking performance and recording opportunities of developed sketches and completed works.

Advanced composition students and early-career composers are urged to refer to Behind Bars - an indispensable reference book on the subject of musical notation. In the most thorough and painstakingly researched book to be published since the 1980s, the author Elaine Gould (Senior Editor at Faber Music) provides a comprehensive grounding in notational principles.

Behind Bars covers everything from basic rules, conventions and themes to complex instrumental techniques, empowering the reader to prepare music with total clarity and precision.

Available to purchase from Faber Music at: https://www.fabermusic.com/shop/behind-bars-the-definitive-guide-to-music-notation-p6284

Composition pupils are also encouraged to explore Fundamentals of Musical Composition, which represents the culmination of more than forty years in Schoenberg’s life devoted to the teaching of musical principles to students and composers in Europe and America. For his classes he developed a manner of presentation in which ‘every technical matter is discussed in a very fundamental way, so that at the same time it is both simple and thorough’.

This book can be used for analysis as well as for composition. On the one hand, it has the practical objective of introducing students to the process of composing in a systematic way, from the smallest to the largest forms; on the other hand, the author analyses in thorough detail and with numerous illustrations those particular sections in the works of the masters which relate to the compositional problem under discussion.

Available to purchase from Faber at: https://www.faber.co.uk/product/9780571196586-fundamentals-of-musical-composition/

For details regarding current vacancies and all other enquiries relating to composition lessons and mentorship, please email Steve at Dulwich Piano Lessons: contact@dulwichpianolessons.com





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