Musical Composition, Theory and Songwriting/Expert Profile


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Expertise

All aspects of the academic/theoretical side of music, including harmony, counterpoint, elementary composition, history, harmonic analysis, aural training, sightreading - the lot! Please note I'm not primarily a composer so I can't help with composition beyond what's required for Grade 8 theory or A'level. And don't ask me about psychoacoustics or music psychology as I have no knowledge of, nor interest in, either subject.

Experience in the area

57 years as pianist (soloist and accompanist); 42 years as harpsichordist (soloist and continuist); 10 years as violinist and 6 years as bassoonist (youth orchestras/chamber groups); 45 years as piano teacher, coach in performance/interpretation (all ages, instruments and levels) and private tutor (mainly the old O'level, Grade VI+ ABRSM theory/practical musicianship, A'level and undergraduates); 20 years as ballet pianist (Cecchetti syllabus).

Organizations

Member of Musicians' Union in Britain 1978-1989 and 1991-2009.

Publications

I've been writing professionally since I was 20 - too many programme notes to count over the years and a number of articles. Additionally, from 1996-2000 I was a Music Assessor for London Arts and as such regularly wrote critiques of concerts given by recipients of Arts Council funding.

Education/Credentials

MA in European Cultural Policy & Administration (Warwick University, 1994)
B Mus with Honours (London University, 1977)
Postgraduate Diploma in Arts Administration (City University, 1982)
Licentiate of Royal Academy of Music in Piano Teaching (1976)
Licentiate of Royal Academy of Music in Harpsichord Teaching (1978)

Studied RAM Junior School (1966-74), then as full-time student (1974-78).

What do you like about this subject?

"Music creates order out of chaos: for rhythm imposes unanimity upon the divergent; melody imposes continuity upon the disjointed; and harmony imposes compatibility upon the incongruous." (Menuhin)

Something interesting about this subject that others may not know:

My cousin in the US sent me some theory coursebooks and an AP test paper, and I hadn't appreciated how differently music theory is taught over there - not just terminology but a very different approach, especially when it comes to harmonic analysis. This explains many past misunderstandings I've had on this forum! I'm happy to answer questions from Americans but do remember I'm English.

Something controversial or provocative about this subject

Thank you to the non-European questioners who start off "Dear Sir" - but I'm female! Just call me Clare (all my pupils do).

Average Ratings

Recent Reviews from Users

Read More Comments

    K = Knowledgeability    C = Clarity of Response    P = Politeness
UserDateKCPComments
John12/05/16101010Thank you so much, Clare. A very .....
Yu07/11/16101010Very detailed response
Anders02/17/16101010 
Liam09/17/15101010Thank you so much for your kindness .....
Liam09/10/15101010 

Recent Answers from Clare Redfarn

2016-12-05 Burgmüller:

Hello Anders,    We're talking about Op 100 No 15.  Here's the score http://www.mutopiaproject.org/ftp/BurgmullerJFF/O100/25EF-15/25EF-15-a4.pdf.     As you'd expect, the melody (in the left hand) includes

2016-10-29 terminology:

Hello again Hank,    A triad is a chord with three notes in it.  We build triads from the bottom up, so pick a note (the root) upon which to build your triad and add the third above it (either major or

2016-08-22 musical analysis:

Hello Andrew - good to hear from you again.    Your terminology is a little muddled, so let's clear that up.  Harmonic analysis means looking at a sequence of chords and identifying how they relate to

2016-04-19 Time signature:

Hello Gavin, and thanks for the link.    It's in 4/4 - the underlying rhythm is:    Beat 1: Crotchet   Beat 2: Two quavers - tie the second quaver over the barline to  Beat 3: (Dotted semiquaver), demisemiquaver

2016-04-16 harmony:

Hello Hank, and thanks for being patient.    Music is a language, and like all languages, it evolves.  What you presumably mean by "classical theory" is the key-based tonal system which had fully evolved

 

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