IMPROVISATION IN MUSIC by Gertrude Price Wollner


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Subtitled Ways Toward Capturing Musical Ideas and Developing Them, this book is accessible to those with some musical background, including the ability to read music, and a basic knowledge of theory. Mrs. Wollner offers ""a vocabulary of rhythms and melody making, harmony and counterpoint and even form"" from which to move into improvisation and even composition of an extempore nature. She gives progressive information and instruction, includes chapters on unusual scales, listening, recapturing an improvisation, building forms, free counterpoint, harmony as accompaniment, improvisation for the dance. For the person who wishes to develop further depth, there are exercises involving four versions of a Bach chorale and a chord outline for the Bach C-Major Prelude. For teachers, there is a chapter on group improvisation. Finally, there is a model improvisation and an anthology of quotes on the subject. Well illustrated with musical examples, with an outsize binding for use at the piano, this is a welcome addition for amateurs, students and teachers alike. One note: classical and folk examples are used: the material can be used by the popular or jazz musician, but is not oriented in this direction.

Publisher: Doubleday