Yuzhi Wang (Age 14), North Sydney NSW

Composition: Momentum Fanfare

Listen to Yuzhi’s original fanfare.

Australian Youth Orchestra recording of Momentum Fanfare.

My name is Yuzhi Wang, and I’m in Year 9 at the Sydney Conservatorium High School. When I was 5, there was an electric keyboard at home, and this started my love of music. Because my mother encouraged me, I started having piano lessons. In the same year, I began composing, but I didn’t know about manuscript books, so I just drew 5 lines and started drawing notes almost randomly. Reinterpreting pieces that I was playing fascinated me. In 2015-2016, I wrote an orchestral piece called “End of War” for my primary school band. I can’t remember where I got the idea; the piece seemed to come from nowhere. It was performed at the 2016 school speech day at the end of the year. It came 4th for the Fine Music 102.5 Young Composers’ competition.

I have had Réka Csernyik as a music teacher in both Year 7 and this year. One time she discussed Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 and her explanation of the different textures of the ripieno and the concertino, and it was very interesting. Science is my favorite subject now, especially the study of chemistry, Einsteinian physics and quantum physics.

My composition lessons started at the Rising Stars program in the Sydney Conservatorium. After that, I’ve been learning composition with Joe Manton. My current composition and music skills teacher is Tristan Coelho. I think he is an excellent teacher with broad knowledge. I always learn a lot from him.
I like watching different videos about maths, science and geography. One thing that you might find interesting about me is that on my computer desktop I have an upside-down world map. I made this map myself by carefully tracing over a right side up map, turning it 180 degrees and adding the labels of countries in text boxes. I think this shows that I look at the world in so many different ways.

Composition Inspiration 

When I first started to compose my fanfare, I didn’t consciously have any inspiration. Now I realize that it has a very energetic rhythm. Over 21 bars at the tempo of Vivace ♩ = 160, I have changed the time signature 4 times; the structure of the piece starts with an introduction starting in 4/4, then 7/8, then 6/8 for just 1 bar. After the introduction, the time signature returns to 4/4; the ending contains an upward-moving melody to a high A♭ ending in 2 bars of 7/8. This changes the durational aspect, and a bit of the structural one; I think that the piece is lit up by these time signature changes. My fanfare is not a stately one that could be used, for example, for the opening of the Olympic Games (it is also too short). Rather the mood is more medium-scale such as the beginning of a musical or a fanfare for a school assembly or sports meeting. The rhythm suggests energetic dancing rather than marching.

When writing this piece, I tried new approaches to harmony and melodies. For example… pretty much in the whole piece, I used the theme of going down for 3 notes and coming back up. I also made extensive use of major and sus chords with an extra note, especially the Bb-sus-7 and C-over-F chords. I am currently orchestrating the fanfare from the short score; I have decided the instrumentation (I wished the orchestra had a hi-hat!) and done around 7 bars.