EXTEMPORE PLAYING - online tutorial

40 Lessons in how to correctly play improvisations.

Home Main Menu Singing & Playing Order & Order Info Support Search Voucher Codes

Share page  Visit Us On FB

Previous Contents Next
Organists' Modulations
During the course of a Church service, especially if Episcopal, one piece of music will frequently be followed immediately by another in quite a different key. This fact has apparently given rise to the idea held by many an organist that in such cases he is called upon to modulate from the one key to the other; and this is commonly attempted, but usually with deplorable results, from lack of knowledge as to what modulation means, and how and when it should be used. We are often presented with a series of bald V7-I's into next-related keys, producing the most ex­asperating effect and spoiling the symmetry of the service.
The following ideas are therefore presented for careful consideration.
(i) Next-related modulations are suitably used in the course of a musical statement, not as a means of joining one section with another.
(2)   When a whole movement has been finished off with its perfect cadence, it should not be joined on to what follows by meaningless strings of chords. We might as well place two pictures in the same mount, or join two chapters of a story by conjunctions.
(3)   This also applies to phrases or musical sentences. These are very commonly followed by another statement in an unrelated key.
(4)   When, however, a modulation is to be used, there are many interesting ways of introducing one, without having recourse to trite and worn-out successions. A definite figure may be employed, either borrowed from what has already been heard, or else of independent character. One of the many devices studied in the last lesson may be introduced. It may be remarked that a telling device is to emphasize a single chromatic tone. This, so emphasized, is accepted by the ear as important, and will be assumed to be the dominant or tonic of a new key.
Previous Contents Next