Level 2: Craft of Music Composition

Develop Your Ability to Compose With Our Most Intensive Composition Course

The second level of the highly popular Craft of Music Composition is now available for pre-order. When you pre-order the course, you'll be able to save substantially on the total cost. The course will be available on August 27th, 2016. Pre-order before August 26th to receive the discount.

Taking the Next Steps

This course goes in-depth into the various techniques that composers can use to refine their craft, improve their skill, and develop their ability to compose effective works. While music composition does require a certain degree of talent, anybody can learn to compose if they apply themselves and study in the right way.

Music theory is a tool that is useful for helping you to analyze and study music. This is an important skill that any composer should develop. It's also mostly useless when it comes to composing original music.

For a composer, music theory has three main purposes:

    1) To stand on the shoulders of the musical geniuses that came before you.

    2) To know whether another composer already worked out a more effective way to communicate your ideas.

    3) To break new ground and create compositions that are truly original and unique.

Level 2: Craft of Music Composition Overview

The second level of Craft of Music Composition is designed to teach you how to be original in your thinking. You'll learn some of the best tips and techniques that Kevin Ure has developed over the course of his teaching and composing career. He's compiled the best and most effective advice he's received over the years into a comprehensive text that aims to answer some of music composition's most pressing issues.

Unit 1: Creating a Composition Schedule

This unit delves into the process of creating an exercise routine that you can follow on a daily basis to improve your composition technique. The goal is to create a set of exercises that you complete every day that serves to keep your skills sharp.

Unit 2: Chords and Progressions Simplified

Chord progressions are made overly complicated by traditional tonal harmony. This unit gives you tips and techniques for creating chord progressions that are theoretically sound and avoid much of the dogma associated with "classical-style" rules for progressions. This section also delves into the difference between progressions and successions and why you might choose one over the other.

Unit 3: Analyzing a Musical Score

All composers should have the ability to look at a musical score in order to learn from it. This unit gives you tips and techniques to help you get more from your score study to further enhance your craft.

Unit 4: Techniques for Developing Your Inner Ear

Developing the inner ear is essential for a composer. Relying on an external device to listen to your compositions is not as fluid or creative as being able to hear your composition in your mind before committing it to paper.

Unit 5: Visualizing a Composition

Expanding on the previous unit, this section discusses some techniques that can be used to get into a "composing state." This state is essential for concentrating on and editing your compositions in the most creative manner possible.

Unit 6: The Motivic Impulse

Motives drive a piece. This unit goes into some of the ways you can develop your motives.

Unit 7: Improving Your Melodies

There are several advanced techniques you can use to improve your melodies. This unit helps you analyze your melodies and improve them using sound principles.

Unit 8: Rhythm and Drive

Rhythm is the driving force behind most compositions. It's also the area that many composers struggle with. This unit will help composers to develop their ability to compose rhythms that complement the melody and harmony in a piece.

Unit 9: How Melodies Dictate Harmony

Melody implies harmony in a composition. Learn how to select the harmonies that best match your melody, and develop a better understanding of how to select an appropriate harmony.

Unit 10: Pace Yourself

Pacing and phrasing are crucial to a composition. This unit reveals tips and techniques used by master composers to organize, edit, and evaluate the pacing of a composition.

Unit 11: Understanding Musical Forms 

Musical form is the container in which you pour your musical ideas. It allows a composer to create a memorable work, and it gives the audience the organization necessary to understand your composition.

Unit 12: Solving Advanced Composition Issues

This unit deals with advanced composition issues that confront all composers. Tips for dealing with writer's block, correcting a difficult passage in a composition and using sound principles to encourage your brain to work on problems while you sleep.

Unit 13: The Importance of Musical Variety

This unit discusses some advanced principles that involve making your composition more appealing and effective. There is a fine line between too much and too little variety, and this unit helps you walk that line.

Unit 14: Orchestration and Registral Space

A poorly orchestrated and voiced composition can make an otherwise brilliant work fall flat. This unit discusses the essentials that you must know to avoid creating a composition that doesn't have proper resonance and clarity.

Unit 15: Developing a Compositional Style

All composers should continually strive to develop their own compositional style. It doesn't matter what kind of music you're interested in, you can create your own personal signature so that the listener knows they are listening to your work. This unit gets into the reasons why certain composers have a particular sound. Essentially, why does Mozart sound like Mozart, and Beethoven like Beethoven?

Unit 16: Creating a Professional Score

This unit includes the best tips I've learned from professional composers on how to format your score to win a composition, get published and get taken seriously by other musicians. It's also imperative that students follow these guidelines when applying to universities.

Course Delivery

As with the Level 1 course, this course will be delivered in installments. When it's ready, you'll receive the first two lessons immediately. You'll then continue to receive additional updates at the rate of two per month until the course is completed.

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