“Composition Classes” ~ ! ~ Huh? :-/ ?
Having started this thread ~ "Composers in our Midst" - https://thesession.org/discussions/31405 - a loosely annual foray into that rough country, dark alleyways, dangerous scaffolding, rats surrying about, and dead ends, I was kind of enjoying the exploration when I came across a bright yellow and black box with the markings for ‘radioactive’. But it didn’t actually scare me off, I wanted to get a closer look. Where did I leave my lead lined suit? ‘Compositions Classes’?!? I have heard tell of this before, and even seen it on the list of workshops at various folk events, and folk study courses. So, as I gather from this you can get ‘certified’, like someone with a learning disability, as a ‘composer’? ~ or at least one ‘educated in composition’. I even read how some people had spent days, weeks, months, years working on a tune. Sorry, but that just seems weird to me, as does the other mention of assignments, given by the person or persons teaching said courses, or self chosen ~ "Lydian Oh Lydian", and using diminished and augmented 5ths, or limiting it to just three notes, or ~ played on six bottles of Guiness tuned to pentatonic?
I think I’m going to need botox my forehead is getting so deeply furrowed. But, I don’t think even that would work, or plastic surgery.
So, furrowing my brow even deeper, scruntching it and wincing a bit in confusion, what exactly are these things? What happens in them? How are they taught? Who teaches them? How? Why?
I know this is a lot to ask, for you to come out of the closet and admit you’re composition addicted or have attended these classes, or teach them, but please, I really am curious. I know of such things in studying jazz and so-called classical traditions, so why not trad too, eh? But why? And what exactly happens? And while I understand all the intricacies of doing something like this for an orchestra or a brass quintet, why the fiddle or a whistle and, for one example, a 32 bar reel? It sounds very serious, and potentially, in my limited understanding of ‘why’, potentially painful…
Perplexed, flummoxed, and very, very, very curious… ~ ‘c’