Think of one of your favorite characters from any form of media. Chances are, they evoke some emotional response in you that has drawn you toward them. Characters can be abundant sources of joy and inspiration for all of us, as can be seen from just a glance online at the copious amounts of fan art and works created by all sorts of people motivated by their passion for all sorts of characters.
We used a character as the foundation for making music at our most recent Second Saturdays Zoom workshop. We began by coming up with a character: one attendee brought up her affection for capybaras, and we soon landed on Cappy the capybara as the protagonist for our musical story.
We brainstormed a list of association words and phrases that we imagined Cappy to have, to inspire the composition of his leitmotif – a musical theme associated with him that would repeat throughout our piece. “Sleepy”, “determined”, “furry”, “plump”, “aquatic”, and “adorable” were among these descriptors. Thinking of these words, we started laying down some notes in a Hyperscore melody window that would encapsulate Cappy’s energy, using the warm sound of a french horn.
The next question was, what’s the story? Cappy needs an exciting adventure. Imagining various scenarios prompted a second character–a hungry alligator!
There should be more than danger motivating our story. What is something that would make Cappy happy? Why, some delicious fruit, of course.
And where does all this action take place? Alligators inhabit rivers, so we needed music to suggest rippling water.
Now that we had our main characters and setting, what about the action? Cappy goes out for a stroll and come to a river. He starts swimming but Alligator enters the scene. When Cappy realizes he is being stalked, he starts swimming faster. There’s a race culminating in Alligator lunging at Cappy!
Here’s “Cappy’s Day.” Listen to hear the different themes and find out Cappy’s fate!
Here is the full Second Saturday workshop showing in real time how we put this composition together. Peter shares a ton of subtle Hyperscore tricks and hacks!
Want to try this out yourself? Sign up for our free Second Saturdays workshops here.