Music Language 1: the Diatonic World
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I took this Music Language 1 in Semester 2 2019. In this subject, we learned intervals, church modes (both authentic and plagal), melody writing, two-part species counterpoint writing, polyphonic music analysis, functional harmony (up-to tonicisation and modulation to closely related keys), four-part harmony writing, harmonic Roman Numeral Analysis, music form and music structural analysis. I got an H1 (96) in this subject. If your music theory background is quite strong, then this subject can be really really easy for you, since non of the topic is hard per se. If your music theory background is quite weak, then it might be potentially somewhat intense, since it covers quite a lot topics in a short amount of time. There are three kinds of assessment, which are in-lecture listening test, compositional or analytical assignment, and exam. We had 8 assignments in total. All of the assignment are quite straight forward to me. However, if your music theory background isn't very strong and if there is a topic that is brand new to you, then it might take you some time to complete the assignment on that topic. If you have anything unclear, you can always go to a tutor's consultation hour. They are always happy to help. There are about eight listening tests if I remembered correctly. The five tests that you scored highest goes towards your grade. I did need to prepare for listening test each week, since they don't tell us when they will give us a listening test until we go to the lecture that week. There are quite a lot of very old music (i.e. from Renaissance and Medieval periods). So unless you've studied that period of music before, it is quite likely that you haven't listened to most of the music. The time of the exam is very short (only one hour). I finished the exam only just in-time. On our exam paper was a score of a two-page piano piece (roughly seventy bars in length, probably from the Classical period). The audio music of this piece was played twice (at the start and middle of the exam). We were asked to conduct a detailed harmonic analysis for the first half of the piece, and then do a structural analysis for the form of this piece. My advise is do the harmonic analysis as fast as possible, so that you have plenty of time to write your structural analysis. Don't be like me, who took extremely long time to analyse harmony and only had very short time to analyse the form. All in all, this is a nice subject to take.👍 It teaches you many fundamental topics of music theory. The topics are logically ordered. You do need to spend some time on this subject if your music theory background is not very strong, but if you go to all lectures, do the suggested readings (from The Complete Musician) and go to consultation hour if you have anything unclear, then you should be able to keep up. On the other hand, if your music theory background is very strong, then assignments and exam should be a piece of cake for you. The only thing you need to do is prepare for listening tests each week. I would suggest everyone who play a music instrument or like music taking this subject.
Anonymous, Semester 2, 2019
I took this as a summer subject in 2019. It was quite tough to learn everything quickly in half the time, and I was pretty stressed out because we had 1-2 assignments and a listening test each week. I liked the content though, and it was logically ordered and organised so you build on the skills you learn throughout the subject. Kevin is a wonderful lecturer and gives great detailed feedback, and he is happy to help students who ask questions.