Graphic Scores Lesson Plan

Graphic Score of Andrew Downes' Interlude 1 from his Opera Odysseus and the Cyclops

Year: 7  Duration: 30 minutes

OBJECTIVES: 

  • learn what a graphic score is
  • listen to a piece of music whilst following a graphic score
  • compose music using a graphic score for inspiration 
  • create graphic score whilst listening to a piece of music

RESOURCES:

  • Video of George Ligeti’s Artikulation with Rainer Wehinger’s graphic score
  • Recording of Andrew Downes’ Interlude
  • Paper and coloured pens or pencils

TIMINGS:

Introduction: Today we will learn about Graphic Scores - 5 mins

  1. We will listen to music and follow a graphic score
  2. We will create our own music from a graphic score 
  3. We will create our own graphic score whilst listening to a piece of music

Q&A: What is a graphic score? What does a musical score usually look like? What elements does it show (instruments, pitch, direction of music, speed, rhythm)

Video and discussion - 5 mins

  • Show YouTube video
  • Ask them to explain particular features they have noticed - I will write them on the board (pitch, articulation, dynamics, timbre, rhythm, note length, speed)

Composition - 10 mins

  • Choose one page and leave it on the board. In pairs they have to produce their own composition using voices and body percussion. Perform to the class.

Graphic Score Creation - 10 mins

  • Listen to Interlude recording. Discuss the different elements they are hearing. Write on board.
  • Ask them to create their own graphic score.
  • More info on this work as well as sheet music for 3 part choir and piano arrangement: here
  • Lesson Resources for the opera Odysseus and the Cyclops

Examples of children's work:

DIFFERENTIATION AND OUTCOMES

  • All children will create a graphic score and will compose a piece of music
  • Most children will create a graphic score that shows one or two elements of music and will compose a piece of music that resembles features of the graphic score
  • Some children will create graphic scores with a number of different elements of music and will compose a piece of music that resembles many features of the graphic score
  • A few children will create complex graphic scores showing a number of different elements of music and will compose complex music interpreting all of the features of the graphic score

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