Treatise on Instrumentation (Dover Books on Music) [Hector Berlioz, Richard Strauss] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The most influential. Berlioz was one of the first composers to deal greatly with orchestration. In this treatise he talks about what the different sounds that instruments make (tone. Includes full-score musical examples from works by Berlioz, Mozart, Beethoven, Music History and Theory – Books on Music; /; Treatise on Instrumentation.

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It must also be realised that its level, even and uniform sonority never blends completely with the diverse and distinctive sounds of the orchestra, and that there seems to be a hidden antipathy between these two musical powers.

Apart from the special skill required from the timpanist in the handling of sticks, he needs to be a first rate musician who is gifted with an exceptionally sensitive ear: An explanation of the role of particular instruments within the orchestra is also provided.

The result is not only that the effect misfires, but that there is a jarring discrepancy between the stage and the orchestra, and between the melody and its instrumentation. When at rest it would be majestic like a slumbering ocean.

Their turn to be noticed, rejected, accepted, repressed, liberated and exaggerated only came later. The pianissimo of trombones applied to harmonies in a minor key is sombre and lugubrious, I might say almost hideous. Meyerbeer has entrusted to the bass clarinet an eloquent monologue in the trio of Act V of Les Huguenots Example.

Treatise on Instrumentation – Wikipedia

I cannot guess why. It is enough to examine any of his works to lay bare his limited skill in this respect […]. Beethoven, 4th symphony, 2nd movement, bars [ Musical and Literary Works.

Sometimes the ophicleide is used to replace it, but its tone does not have the same depth as its range is the same as that of the standard bassoon and not an octave lower; in any case its timbre is of a quite different character from that of the double-bassoon. I therefore believe that in the majority of cases it is better to do without this instrument than to replace it in this way.


Attempts are being made at this moment to block the progress of music on other fronts. They possess the greatest expressive power and an unquestionable variety of timbres.

It possesses to the highest degree nobility and grandeur. But a careful study will reveal that it possesses an expressiveness of its own, and is well suited to rendering some feelings which no other instrument can match. InRichard Strauss was asked to update the text to include some modern instruments and included musical examples from Wagner, and in the updated Treatise with a new preface by Strauss was published in German.

Clearly all was lost. On the other hand one can certainly demonstrate easily and with virtual exactness the art of making orchestras that are suitable for rendering faithfully compositions of every form and dimension.

Treatise On Instrumentation

Table of contents Top of the page. Gluck is the only master who seems to me to have understood how to make excellent use of these pale tones. Portrait of Hector Berlioz by Achille Peretti Although he never was an expert player of instrkmentation instrument, he had become such an expert of all instruments that he could write such a treatise.

They can also be used to excellent effect in symphonic music, even in vigorous passages, whether played by all the string sections together, or by only one or two parts.

This timbre is also so clear and penetrating that one can pick out a single soprano saxhorn through a considerable mass of other wind instruments. But when multiplied by many instruments playing in unison, it results in magnificent nuances and irresistible surges of emotion instrimentation penetrate to the depth of the heart.

The composer must always be careful to indicate the duration he wishes to give to treatize strokes that are followed by a rest.

Treatise on Instrumentation

Its task is therefore not to reinforce the double-basses, instruumentation which its timbre does not blend in any way. And yet it would be interesting to try once to make simultaneous use of all the insteumentation resources that can be assembled in Paris, in a work specially written for the occasion. The different keys of the saxhorn, like those of the cornet, start in descending order from the typical instrument, the little soprano saxhorn in C, which is an octave above the cornet in C.


The old masters only used them to strike the tonic or dominant on a more or less commonplace rhythm in pieces of a brilliant character or with martial pretensions. But to write for it as has been instrunentation these last fifteen years, where it is introduced in every ensemble, in every finale, in the slightest chorus, in dance tunes, even in cavatinas, this is the height of insanity and, to call things by their name, of brutality.

The double or triple repetition of the upper notes in the last two examples is made very easy by using in succession the index finger and the third finger on the same string. In my Requiem I have used the bass drum forte without cymbals and played with two sticks.

I think it is best for them not to be left exposed.

All rights of reproduction reserved for the texts and translations on this page. The sounds of the middle range have a proud quality tempered by noble tenderness, and are thus ideal for expressing feelings and ideas of the most poetic kind.

Similarly for the third with the basses. None of the great masters of the previous century thought it appropriate to introduce it in the orchestra. A vigorous marcato rhythm in a vast choral piece or a frenzied dance gains a great deal by being played not by a single pair of cymbals but by four, six, ten or even more, depending on the size of the venue and the numbers of the other instruments and voices.

It is not capable either of voicing passionate laments, and tones of acute grief are more or less beyond its reach. Beethoven has made greater use of the joyful tones of the oboe.