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  • Holly Mead

Composing Music by William Russo: Chapter 1 / Exercise 3

The Row



The guard doesn’t speak. She leads you down a deserted path to a row of small huts behind Edrevol’s castle. She stops at the threshold of the last hut and turns to address you. She speaks in straightforward tones, but you detect a hint of an accent and something else...sympathy?

“Here are your new quarters. Inside, you will find several instruments that were left behind by our former court bard. Make use of them. The king is expecting a visitor tomorrow at noontide, and you must be prepared to entertain them with a song. My name is Shella, and I will be coming to collect you when the sun is at its highest peak.”

She departs, leaving you to wonder what happened to the former court bard...

The inside of the hut is surprisingly homey. There is a fireplace, a small table and chair, a bookshelf, a sleeping pallet, and several ornately carved stringed instruments and flutes hanging on the walls.

You take down a small harp with five strings, and begin to compose a song using a row. In music, a row is a group of tones that are always used in the same order. Tones may be repeated and/or used in other octaves.

Here is your chosen row:


​Using only these two rhythms, create a tune for your impending noontide performance!