Year 11 Curriculum Music

A motif is defined in the Oxford Dictionary as ‘a dominant or recurring idea in an artistic work. Motifs give a work unity by creating a strong thematic link or through-line that balances the contrasting aspects of an artistic work.’

The subtle or overt varying of a motif can encourage artistic creativity as the author carefully considers their choices to craft appropriately nuanced iterations. Reusing and varying musical ideas in different ways is a powerful tool when composing, and can demystify the process of composing by providing a structure for the girls as they compose. Not every sound in a composition needs to be completely unique, in fact, all great compositions include a substantial amount of repetition—just like the chorus of a popular song.

Year 11 Music students have explored motifs in their composing project as part of the unit Designs and these ideas have informed Caitlin Mikli’s (11H) response to the task titled Colourful Celebration. Caitlin said, Colourful Celebration draws inspiration from the post-minimalist genre, specifically Ludovico Einaudi’s piece Night, which is known for its repetition and motifs.

‘In this piano duet, I have used a variety of compositional techniques such as the chord progression, bass notes, rhythm and harmony to create feelings of stability and brightness throughout entire the piece for the audience.’

Please enjoy Caitlin’s composition below.

Mr Michael McGrath
Curriculum Music Teacher