Treatise on Instrumentation (Dover Books on Music) [Hector Berlioz, Richard Strauss] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The most influential. Book Source: Digital Library of India Item : Hector ioned. Berlioz was one of the first composers to deal greatly with orchestration. In this treatise he talks about what the different sounds that instruments make (tone.

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Then it sings a gentle lament, and rises to express reproach, deep grief, and the cry of a heart torn by incurable wounds. There are several reasons for the unjust bondage of this noble instrument. Harold in Italy1st movement, bar 73 and following; overture to Benvenuto Cellini ; the Roman Carnival overture; the Menuet des Follets from the Instumentation of Faust ].

To please these people it was absolutely essential to saturate compositions with major or minor seconds, sevenths, ninths, fifths and fourths, used without reason or purpose, unless it is assumed that the point of this harmonic style is to offend the ear as often as possible.

One may find in their scores passages with a passionate intent and martial tone that are oddly at variance with the sound of the oboes that play them.

Treatise on Instrumentation – Hector Berlioz, Richard Strauss – Google Books

In the overture to Oberon Weber with rare felicity makes the cellos sing in their upper register, while two clarinets in A playing in unison sound their lower notes underneath. I assume he is thoroughly familiar, insrumentation to the smallest detailswith the score he is going to perform. Sound reflectors are indispensable; they are found arranged in different ways in any enclosed building. When they were unable to think straightaway of a few notes to fill in the chords they quickly fell back on the inevitable indication col bassoand did so in such a careless way that the result was sometimes an octave doubling of the bass line which was incompatible either with the harmony, or with the melody, or with both at once.

Treatise On Instrumentation

The art of instrumentation consists in using these various sound elements and applying them, either to colour the melody, harmony and rhythm, or to produce effects that are sui generis whether motivated by an expressive intention or notindependently of the part played by the three other musical forces.

One may use as many timpanists as there are timpani in the instrumentatioon, in order to produce rolls and rhythms with two, three, or four parts, onstrumentation on the numbers available.


Assuming a composer had such resources at his disposal, in a vast hall organised for this purpose by an architect versed in acoustics and music, he would need to determine precisely before starting work the disposition and layout of this huge orchestra, and then keep them always in mind while composing.

No need to add that in this system the bass drum is almost never used without the accompaniment of cymbals, as though these two instruments were by their nature inseparable. For further details see Berlioz: It has therefore been used in a modern symphony to parody, degrade and vilify a melody; the dramatic purpose of the work required this strange transformation [this refers to the last movement of the Symphonie Fantastique ] […].

The orchestra may be thought of as a large instrument that is capable of producing simultaneously or in succession a multitude of sounds of different kinds.

Grand traité d’instrumentation et d’orchestration modernes, Op.10 (Berlioz, Hector)

It is imposed on composers more by habit, routine, laziness and lack of thought than for reasons of economy, though these are unfortunately all too compelling, particularly in France. On the other hand the bass drum played pianissimo on its own is sinister and threatening provided the instrument is of large dimensions berlizo well built ; it then resembles a distant cannon shot.

This manner of instrumentation could lead to grand and sublime effects. Suppose a mass of voices placed in the choir of a church, far away from the organ, and interrupting its chant to let the organ repeat it, in whole or in part; suppose even that the bsrlioz, in a ceremony of a sad character, was accompanied by a lament alternating between the orchestra and the organ from the two extremities of the church, with the organ following the orchestra like a mysterious echo of its belrioz.

I therefore believe that in the majority of cases it is better to do without this instrument than to replace it in this way. A few random examples: The effect then becomes incomparably more powerful and beautiful. Hector BerliozRichard Strauss. This method should result first in an excellent quality of performance which could not be obtained under the old system of collective rehearsals; it would not require more than four rehearsals at the most from each player.

Treatise on Instrumentation – Wikipedia

So great is the difference that composers must inevitably take this into account and should not write their dramatic scores in exactly the same way as symphonies, masses and oratorios that are intended for concert halls or for churches. The composer may at will make it sing a chorus of priests, threaten, utter a subdued lament, whisper a funeral dirge, raise a hymn of glory, break out in dreadful cries, or sound its formidable call for the awakening of the dead or the death of ber,ioz living.


This makes them suitable for compositions of a funereal or awe-inspiring character.

A small and flimsy vaudeville orchestra can be noisywhere a great mass of musicians properly deployed will be extremely gentle and, even in its most vehement outbursts, will produce the most beautiful sounds. Obviously it would be necessary to adopt a style of extraordinary breadth every time the entire mass of players and singers is used, while delicate effects, light and fast movements, should be reserved for small orchestras which the composer could easily assemble and make to dialogue with each other in this crowd of musicians.

Up till now they have only used the thumb and the index finger for plucking, and the result is that they are unable to play passages or arpeggios involving more than semiquavers in common time and at a very moderate tempo. The two lower strings, the C and G strings, have a smooth and deep sound which is admirably suited in such cases, but their low register means that they can only be given a bass line that is more or less melodic, while the true singing parts must be reserved for the higher strings.

The practice of some masters nowadays of treating the three trombones and ophicleide as a quartet, with the latter taking the real bass part, may not be above reproach. It is just a matter of knowing how to let them speak. It is enough to examine any of his works to lay bare his limited skill in this respect […].

SopranoAltoTenorBass etc. Pizzicato plucked strings is also widely used with bowed instruments. On the contrary, by being relegated to the central and lowest point of the hall, in front of the footlights and on a horizontal plane, the players are deprived of most of the advantages that derive from the layout I have described for concert orchestras.

Te Deum8th movement; the original version of the Royal Hunt and Storm from Les Troyens was written for saxhorns, which nowadays are replaced by horns, trumpets, and cornets; the same applies to the great finale the Trojan March of Act I of Les Troyens ].