MUST 112 Spring 14

This is an archived page of my spring 2014 flipped Theory II class.
Back to Music Theory Resources.


Thank You, Some Thoughts, and Final Exam Jury Next Thursday

Thank you for your honest thoughts and opinions about our class this semester on the questionnaire today. I’m glad many of you enjoyed the class, and am thankful for your criticisms. I will definitely consider your thoughts as I shape the classes I teach for the summer and the fall. For example, a few of you mentioned going over the videos a little in class the next class. I can’t believe I didn’t always do that, I should have been doing that the whole time. This is why I need your feedback. Thanks again!

As for the idea of throwing out the book and limiting part writing, I guess I should explain what I mean.

Of course, future students would keep the book, it is a useful resource and you need it if you don’t take theory from me. But I’m thinking about untethering my teaching from it, so I can be more creative about my methods to help you all better. If you use the textbook, keep doing it. It is a good book, but I generally find that textbooks are best read after the fact than taught from. One of my favorite theory textbooks is by Eastman professor Steven Laitz. He does a beautiful job explaining hard concepts and connecting many ideas, but I wouldn’t dream of teaching from the book. This thing is so jam packed with stuff that sifting the neccessary from the less important is really hard in the limits of a college class.

As for part writing, it is a good tool to give you all the experience of writing pitches and making music. But theory is more than guiding you through every minute point about things Mozart sort of did. I was thinking of spending less time on it so we can interact with actual music more often, and so we can dig deeper into how and why questions. You would learn how to write chord to chord diatonically, but over 5 weeks instead of 15, so we could spend time thinking about music in depth rather than 15 weeks of diatonic Where’s Waldo. You would still be writing, but more freely. And hopefully with more insight. I’m thinking about adding a unit on pop/rock harmony and form. Kris Shaffer at University of Colorado-Boulder does some pretty awesome stuff with pop and rock in undergrad theory, such as this, this, and especially this.

For a final thought, great musicians interact with music on many levels beyond Roman numerals and part writing rules. The research music theorists do is astounding in its depth and variety, and I want to give my students a better understanding of this, which I find I have trouble getting across within the current structure of my classes. If you want to see how a real music theorist digs into music hardcore and draws subtle, yet astounding ideas from actual music, here’s a presentation by Princeton professor Dmitri Tymoczko.

See you at your jury on Thursday. The sign up sheet is posted on my door, if you forget your time. Let me know if you have any questions.

Jury Worksheet (Part Writing and Analysis)
Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 4 Slow Movement Recording

See you on Thursday!
Mr. Kulma


Last Homework, Test on Tuesday, and More info about Final

Thank you for taking the online quiz. You all had some insightful thoughts, and I hope it was helpful in soldifying ideas around Secondary Dominants for you.

The homework I assigned today is
p. 143 Exercise 2
p. 144 Exercise 4 (figured bass in m. 3 on half note should be 6/4)
You will have time to work on it in class on Thursday, when we will prepare for Test No. 3.

Test No. 3 is on Tuesday (4/22) and it will be over Chapters 16 and 17. Practice harmonic sequences and secondary dominants.

You each have two choices for the final. You need to choose by class time on Thursday 4/24 and tell me then which one you will do. There will be a sign up sheet for jury times in class that day.

Choice No. 1: Take the usual written final exam covering everything we’ve done this semester (review your previous               exams for things to practice). I will grade it as usual.

Choice No. 2: A 10-minute jury during the final exam time in my office. I will give you a part writing and an analysis on
Thursday (4/22) to complete before your jury. During the 10 minutes, you will tell me how you arrived at your
answers and I will ask you questions. You may write out an explanation to bring with you, if you like. I may ask you
to complete another task from this semester, as time allows.
*If you choose this option, your grade for this jury experiment will not be below the average of your 3 tests. That
is, if you got a 60% on your three tests, I will give you at least a 60% on this jury. I am trusting you to prepare to
the best of your ability, no matter your current grade.

Let me know if you have any questions, or want more information about the jury final.

See you on Thursday!
Mr. Kulma


Chapter 17 Videos and Online Quiz by Tuesday

I hope you enjoyed looking at the introduction to Beethoven’s First Symphony in class today. Please watch the videos and complete the online quiz before Tuesday. (If you would like to see that silly PowerPoint I used at the beginning of class, go here.)

Please make sure you fill out the online form about the Final Exam, if you haven’t already.

Here are the videos for Chapter 17 and the UHOs:
Video 1
Video 2
Video 3
Video Powerpoint
Beethoven Symphony No. 1 score (pp. 7-8)
Beethoven Reduction from 2nd Video
Beethoven Symphony 1st Movement Recording

Once you have watched the videos, please take the quiz by going here. I will grade this as Quiz No. 7 in place of a final in-class quiz. It is due by class time on Tuesday morning, and and I will grade it based on completion. If you could, please complete it before Monday. If you do, I can read your responses to help me prepare as I make the homework, etc.

Be aware that these are the first videos I made at the end of last semester in my experiment with an inverted classroom. I made no reference to the textbook and did not play any examples. I also did not part write any inversions. Make sure you practice those. Apply forward our part writing guidelines for inversions of V7.

See you on Tuesday!
Mr. Kulma


Chapter 16 Homework and Quiz, Online Form about Final Exam, and Project

Today I assigned the homework for Chapter 16. It is due on 4/10 after we do our project day. We will also have a quiz next class on Harmonic Sequences. Be prepared to do 2 or 3 harmonic sequences in 10 minutes. Pachelbel rant?

Please fill out this online form about the possible replacement for the final written exam, and whether or not you would like to do it.

Today was the last day I will look at your project in class before the day we hear them in class on Tuesday, 3/8. Make sure you make any final corrections, put it into Finale, and make sure you print and fully analyze your piece (Keys, RNs, NCTs, cadences, six-four chord types, etc.) Also, please export a soundfile, email me a copy, and bring it on a jump drive, so I can play soundfiles of your pieces rather me butcher-sightread them. There is no Finale on the classroom computers.

Let me know if you have any questions. I am happy to look at your project again during office hours.

See you on Thursday!
Mr. Kulma


Chapter 16 Videos and Continue Working on the Project

I hope you enjoyed finding the harmonic sequences in class today in various musical examples.  We will work on writing sequences in class on Tuesday with the homework.

Keep working on the project, and please have the final plagal cadence included for class on Tuesday. I am enjoying seeing your steady progress through your compositions.

Here are the videos, etc. for Chapter 16:
About Harmonic Sequences
Part Write Three Sequences
Harmonic Sequences Powerpoint
Harmonic Sequences Part Writing Examples

Musical Examples from class today:
Gloria Gaynor “I Will Survive”
Mozart Piano Sonata No. 12, K. 332, 1st Movement
Mozart PDF
Pachelbel Canon in D
Pachelbel PDF
Beethoven Piano Sonata, Op. 2, No. 3, 3rd Movement
Beethoven PDF (3rd movement begins on p. 15)

See you on Tuesday!
Mr. Kulma


Chapter 15 Video and Do Project Phrase 3 for Next Class

I hope you enjoyed looking at the first prelude from Bach’s Well Tempered Clavier today in class. A great place to find beautifully resolved chordal sevenths.

I am pleased with your progress on the composition project. Make sure you write your third phrase for Tuesday.

Here is the Chapter 15 Video, etc.
Chapter 15: Other Seventh Chords
Other Seventh Chords Powerpoint
Other Seventh Chords Part Writing Examples
Mozart C minor Sonata (Ex. 15.9)
Beethoven C minor Sonata (Ex. 15.10)
Mendelssohn Violin Concerto (Ex. 15.11)

Have a good weekend. As I said in class, we will spend the next two classes working on part writing to make sure you are prepared for Test No. 2.

See you on Tuesday!


Chapter 14 Homework and Composition Project Assigned;

Quiz on vi and iii Next Class

Here is the information on the homework due Thursday.
There will be a quiz next class on vi and iii. Expect I vi IV V I, I iii IV V I, V VI, and V7 VI.

Today in class I explained some about the Composition Project, which is due on Tuesday, April 8. Built into the project this time is regular feedback from me on how it is going. So please make sure you stay current on the project as it goes. This will ensure your success.

Composition Project Info (Tutorial explaining the steps, process, and due dates)
My Example
Sound File of My Example

Use my example as a guide. Note that I have mixed SATB and keyboard style, but the voice leading should be good. I may rewrite it later, to fit my guidelines for you more closely. (I wrote a little piece I thought you should be able to do, and then made a list of steps for you to create something similar. Hopefully, that process will work. We’ll see.)

Thank you for your patience.

See you on Tuesday!
Mr. Kulma


Chapter 14 Videos and Today’s Activity

I hope everyone enjoyed our discovery of common pop/rock chord progressions involving vi in class today. Like classical period music, popular music in its many genres uses a common set of progressions to create a wealth of music.

Here are the videos for Chapter 14:
Video 1: vi(VI)
Video 2: iii(III) and VII
Video 3: Part Writing Other Triads
Other Triads Powerpoint
Other Triads Part Writing Examples

Here are the songs we listened to in class today:
Duke of Earl
Earth Angel
This Boy
Don’t Stop Believing
Let it Be
Viva la Vida
Someone Like You

Would you like to know how ubiquitous I V vi IV is?
Need help figuring out chord progressions in pop songs?
Here is a good resource on this music from a theory teacher’s viewpoint.

We will work on homework next class, and have a quiz on Tuesday.

See you on Thursday!
Mr. Kulma


Chapter 10 Videos and Quiz next week

I hope today’s cadence hunting was helpful in getting you to listen for cadences and then use your eyes to confirm them. As you all know, music is for the ears and they are our guides in music theory.

Here are the videos for Chapter 10:
Video 1: Cadences Information
Video 2: Part Writing Cadences
Cadences Powerpoint
Cadences Part Writing Examples
Voi che sapete score (pp.63-65)
Bartoli Recording

Let me know if you have any questions. We will be working on the homework next time in class. There will be a quiz on your ability to part write cadences next Tuesday.

See you on Thursday!
Mr. Kulma


Chapter 9 Video and Test Review on Thursday

Remember that our first test will be on Tuesday (2/11) over Chapter 7, 8, and 9. We will do review in class on Thusday. Be ready to part write a lot and come with questions about the material and the test. Make sure you review information from Chapters 8 and 9; maybe rewatch the videos. We will also spend more time with the Finding and Fixing Part Writing Errors worksheet.

Here is the the video, etc. for Chapter 9:
Chapter 9 Video: viio6
Leading-Tone Triad Powerpoint
Part Writing Examples from Video
Errors worksheet from last week

See you on Thursday!
Mr. Kulma


Remember Homework due Tuesday

I hope the quiz today was a learning experience about how quickly you need to be able to work to succeed on the upcoming test. Our goal is fluency.

See the post for 1/12/14 below for information on the homework. Let me know if you are having trouble or have questions.

Materials from today’s lecture on Part Writing and Style
Part Writing Powerpoint
Error Finding Activity

See you on Tuesday!


New Homework due Tuesday and Quiz Next Class

Today’s class where you worked on the homework while I wandered the room is what I have in mind for the second day of a chapter as we move forward. Make sure you refer to your notes, the videos, and your textbook as you complete the homework for next Tuesday. Come with questions next class about the homework. I am planning to take some time next class to go over any questions or problems you are having. So don’t put it off until the weekend.

Homework sheet
Haydn Sonata (you need page 1 of the pdf)
Haydn recording

There will be a 10 minute quiz next class where you will part write 2 chord examples like I did in the videos: V7-I in all three versions (C-IN, IN-C, C-C) and the inversions resolving to the correct version of I. Make sure you practice these and can do them quickly. Can you do all six possiblities in 10 minutes?

See you on Thursday!
Mr. Kulma


Chapter 8 Videos

I hope my going over the homework today in class was helpful into how to go about finishing future assignments. Keep in mind the information we went over with the Beethoven Minuet today as you watch the videos. If you were having trouble identifying the harmonies as went, please come and see me so I can help you.

I have made four videos for this chapter on V7. Make sure you have your book while you watch the videos. Please watch them before Wednesday, when we will spend class time working on the homework. Also come with any questions you have from the videos.

Video 1: Root Position
Video 2: Writing RP
Video 3: Inversions
Video 4: Analysis

Dominant Seventh Chords Powerpoint
Completed Part Writing Examples
Horn Concerto recording (start at 7:00)

See you on Tuesday!
Mr. Kulma


Homework due Next Class and Quiz Answers

Remember that the homework I assigned today is due next class (Thursday 1/23). We will go over portions of it and any questions you have then. If you lose your Mozart, here is another place to get it. Here is the page on doing analysis that we created in class.

Thank you for your answers to the quiz questions today. I really did not expect the quiz and the anlaysis at the beginning of class to take so long, so I apologize for that. You should have more time in class to work on homework in the next unit.

You all had good ideas when it came to why composers might use six-four chords. Your thoughts generally grouped around the concept of variety. Composers used these chords to create variety in very specific ways. They can make music more intense as well as smoother.

And with theorists reasons for specific labels, you all again thought similarly. You emphasized the use of those labels to make clear how and why they are used. These specific patterns are given specific labels. I like to think of labeling musical patterns (one thing theorists do) like biologists classifying animals and plants with Latin names. They put specific animals together to show how they are similar. Theorists follow this same process. Six-four chords are a helpful category to place some chords and we can name their various functions in tonal music (neighbor, passing, cadential).

Thank you for your feedback on the videos. I’m glad to see that most of you found them helpful. For those of who would rather find a different way to learn the information, come speak to me and we will come up with a way to help you. A few of you asked for more examples in the videos. I will give this a try, but I was trying to do as few as possible to keep the videos under 10 minutes in length. In the end, if you need another example, check the book and see if you can find one. If not, ask in class, or drop me an email. I can easily show you another.

If you would like to see the activity we did on the first day of this unit (Thursday 1/16), go here.

See you on Thursday!

Mr. Kulma


Chapter 7 Videos and Quiz Next Class

Now that we have done our composition activity in class today, I have posted four videos on Six-Four Chords on YouTube.

Video 1 (Intro)
Video 2 (Neighbor)
Video 3 (Passing)
VIdeo 4 (Cadential)

(The videos right now are unlisted, so you can only access them through these links.)

Please watch them as needed until you are comfortable with the information. At the beginning of next class (1/21), I will give you a short open book/note quiz covering this information. It will include short answer, part writing, and deep thinking questions. The deep thinking questions do not have right or wrong answers.

To help you study, here are links to the powerpoint I used in the videos, as well as the musical examples and a pdf of the part writing I did.

Six-Four Chords Powerpoint
Example 7.1
Example 7.3b
Example 7.5
Example 7.8
Mr. Kulma’s Part Writing

We will spend the rest of next class working on the homework.

See you on Tuesday!

Mr. Kulma