Performed Adaptation

As part of this unit you must submit one performed adaptation of music from a local or global context for your own instrument

Maximum of 2 minutes for the performance, and 1 minute for the stimulus material

Check out some of the examples below

Joy of Life Trout in the Bath performance 17 Nov 2020 Including Audio Mix.mp4

Joy of Life/Trout in the Bath - performed adaptation

Student 1 -

Joy of Life/ Trout in The Bath’ is an example of an Irish Jig.

Jigs are a type of Irish dance music, which are usually characterised by certain musical features like;

  • Compound time signatures (commonly 6/8 )

  • Binary structures - which tend to alternate (ABAB)

  • Repetitive and ornamented melodies; usually played fast with small intervals

  • Rather simplistic harmony/ chordal accompaniment (sometimes including pedal notes).

Irish Jigs developed in late 16th Century England and were then taken in by many countries of Mainland Europe. They were originally used to accompany dance so their primary purpose would be for movement and entertainment as well as listening/ performance for pleasure. Most performances would take place in various types of social venues that vary in size.

'Joy of life' is a modified version of ‘The Carraroe’ Irish jig and 'Trout in the Bath' is based on ‘The Morrison’ jig. These two jigs were then modified and put together by The Corrs, a pop band from Ireland who mixed traditional Irish music with modern mainstream pop.

When performing this piece we hope to successfully show the musical elements used in typical Irish jigs. A fiddle (violin) or Irish flute usually plays the melody. In our adaptation, you will hear a fast melody played on an Irish flute keyboard patch instead. Accompanying will be piano, guitar, bass and drums (low tom drum instead of a traditional Irish bodhran drum).


Student 2 - Joy of life/Trout in the Bath Performance – Play track 3 – 1.54 mins

For our performance, we wanted try and replicate a truthful performance of the Corrs version with inspiration from Sally Maer’s version, with some changes to match the instruments available to us. For our performance, like The Corrs we used a drum kit, piano, acoustic guitar, bass, tin whistle and I played the melodica. When learning the piece, I first played the melody on a synthesised tin whistle patch. After practising with the patch for a couple of days, the sample didn’t sound authentic. This was due to the lack of expression and articulation from the sample. With this, I then moved to the melodica, which has a similar timbre to an accordion, which is often used in Irish music. This created a more faithful adaptation.

I played the melody on the melodica with my tutor on tin whistle, who is from Ireland, showing how local the music is and made our performance more authentic. Learning how to use techniques like ‘tonguing’, and breath control, being able to time when to take breaths, is important to have enough momentum for the melodic phrase. Accompanying was a piano playing lots of sus chords, also using a D pedal note in the intro (shown in the red box below). For the acoustic guitar, we had to detune the high E string to a lower D, creating a root ‘pedal’ note. We also used a drum kit, due to not having a bodhran available to us and also to mimic the Corrs version.

The above written portions are edits from the Exploration of Diverse Music Material, specifically the Statement on the Performed Adaptation (section 3 for the written component), which must also be submitted for this unit. These written excerpts are edits from several first year (year 12) students.