1. Provide basic information on the creator(s) of the work or performance.
"Creator" can be a broad term, depending upon the type of performance. Include relevant details for any persons or groups involved. [If you are creating a recital program as a degree requirement, do write about the composer in your program notes, but include performer bios separately in your program]
- Western art music: composer and librettist/poet
- Popular music: songwriter, original recording artist, performer(s)
- Traditional music/dance: people/culture from which the work/performance originated
- Dance: choreographers, performers/groups
Be selective and intentional in listing off facts -- include what would be relevant to someone listening, not a full history.
- What is the nationality or cultural group of origin of the creator(s) and performer(s)? If it is traditional music (with no specific known creator), speak to the nature of the cultural group that originated the work.
- Did the creator(s) or performer(s) study under someone important, or have a creative relationship with a prominent group? Who were major influences over the creators?
- Are there unique facts or personal experiences from the creator's or performers' lives in relation to this work?
4. Suggest what the audience ought to listen or watch for in the performance.
- Does the work have a form?
- Anything notable about tempo changes, phrasing, modulations, or other analysis?
- Are there unique sounds, unique choreographic formations, or unconventional techniques? Sections of improvisation?
- Are there characteristic intervals, pitches, tone clusters, or melodic patterns? Characteristic body movements?
- Is there special use of a specific instrument?
- Are there notable differences in interpretation between different performers?
Provide your own analysis by viewing or listening to a live performance or recording, or visually examining the score if available.
In the library...
- Search SUMMON for your type of composition (songs, piano concertos, etc) and the words "analysis appreciation"
- Search SUMMON for CDs to read liner notes for your composition
- Search Alexander Street Music & Performing Arts to locate videos or streaming recordings that are similar to your work