Wenjin 文金

For: Large mixed ensemble
page one of Wenjin 文金

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Wenjin 文金


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Year of composition
Difficult (Grades 7+)
5 minutes
Modern classical music
License details
For anything not permitted by the above licence then you should contact the publisher first to obtain permission.

Wenjin is a very traditional specie of Chinese goldfish. It was composed in 2010, for contemporary dance.

Synopsis A new goldfish is brought to a tank. The arriver is curious about everything in its new home. It explores everywhere and meets new friends. The fish owner comes and the fishes are very excited to greet their master. The master drops fish food into the tank. The fishes eat as much as and as fast as they can. Finally, all the fishes are satisfied and full. They sink to the bottom of the tank and fall asleep.

Structure There are five sections in the piece: 1) A goldfish tank (0:00) 2) A new goldfish (1:02) 3) Exploring the new home, meeting new friends (1:45) 4) Greetings to their master, waiting for food (2:59) 5) Satisfied and fall asleep (4:22) These five sections are arranged in Arch Form, ABCB'A', and each section is constructed with smaller structures: Section A: 2-phrase form, with a melodic theme (X) Section B: 2 phrase form, with another melodic theme (Y) Section C: combination of Theme X and Them Y. There are four phrases and are arranged in this format: ab, cb, cd, ad. Section B': Retrograde of Section B, in 2-phrase form or rondo form Section A': Retrograde of Section A, in 2-phrase form.

Music Style Chinese musical style is infused into piece. Pentatonic melodies can be heard in almost everywhere. The instruments (tenor recorder, harp, viola, and glockenspiel) are assigned based on the Chinese instrumental classification: Winds, Plucked Strings, Bowed Strings, and Percussion. Rests are emphasized. According to the great Chinese Philosophy, Taoism, void is equally important as existence. Both of these elements should balance each other to produce harmony.

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