Variation: 14 Ways to Compose with One Idea

From David Bruce Composer.

One of the most common things I hear from composers is "well I’ve found this nice idea, I really like it, but I just don’t know what to do next, I don’t know how should I carry it on". Sometimes rather than continuing to hunt in the dark you should just work with what you already have. In this video I look at the musical technique of Variation as a way of turning your initial idea into a larger piece.

00:51 Simple Melodic Variation

01:47 Simple Rhythmic Variation
02:26 Simple Harmonic Variation
02:53 Modal Variation
04:14 Variation as a Form
05:30 Variations over a harmony
07:45. Note Speed Variation
08:53 Bach & Beethoven Variations
10:30 Advanced melodic variations
12:47 Timbre Variations
14:07 Indian Raga Variations
14:52 Heterophony
15:32 Ben Johnston Variations
16:57 YOUR Variation

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Examples featured in this video:
Pachelbel’s Canon
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JvNQLJ1_HQ0

La Bergamasca, Marco Uccellini
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=34Lohr99FQA

Jascha Heifetz plays Paganini Caprice No. 24
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vPcnGrie__M

The Harmonius Blacksmith
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwjIiUNBiTk

Yuja Wang Rhapsody on a theme by Paganini Rachmaninoff
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-5mn_AOq_RA

Beethoven Diabelli Variations
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wp59KCg_DCY

Cory Henry playing Amazing Grace
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fuZeZCIIAtg

Ben Johnston String Quartet No.4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n4MkJXXMBAw

Bach Goldberg Variations
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=15ezpwCHtJs