The Lamb

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  • Created by: Megan
  • Created on: 11-05-13 10:14

Background

  • Composed in 1982 
  • Setting of poem by William Blake
  • Has been used as an anthem or carol
  • Can be regarded as postmodern

 

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Rhythm and Metre

  • No time signature
  • Performance direction reads 'flexible' - always guided by the words
  • Ryhthm mainly of quavers
  • Augmentation is applied at the end of each verse
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Melody and Word Setting

  • Word-setting is mainly syllabic, with occasional slurs 
  • The 3 upper voice parts are limited to an augmented 5th vocal range
  • Opening motif generates material for the whole piece and consists of 4 pitches circling G (G,B,A,Fsharp)
  • Bar 2 alto = inversion of the original motif
  • Bar 4 = retrograde of melody
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Harmony

  • Freely dissonant in the first 6 bars
  • Bars 7-10 = Modal cadences and a double suspension (creating the 'joy-sorrow' chord
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Tonality

  • G major at the beginning 
  • The becomes Bitonal when Alto joins with Eb
  • Closes in Aeolian mode on E
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Structure

  • Strophic
  • Two verses, second varied by its fuller texture 
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Texture and Performing Forces

  • Four-part unaccompanied choir (SATB)
  • Dynamics resticted to mp/pp
  • We see:
    Monophony (bar 1)
    Two-part homorhythm (bar 2)
    Four-part homorhythm (bar 7) 
    Octaves 
    Octave pairings of Soprano + Tenor/Alto + Bass
     
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