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Pitch

Pitch, in music, is described as the position of a single sound in the complete range of sound. Pitch can give a voice to an idea, a character, or emotion. When you hear a mouse squeak, you are hearing high pitches. When a bear growls, you are hearing low pitches. Pitch is one of the most fundamental elements in music, and we create a melody line, scales, and harmony with pitches. Simply put, pitch is how high or how low a note sounds.

Charles-Camille Saint-Saëns 1835 – 1921 was a French composer, organist, conductor, and pianist from the Romantic era. Saint-Saëns was a true musical prodigy having made his concert debut at the age of ten. He studied at the Paris Conservatoire, worked as a church organist, held a teaching post, and was a successful freelance pianist and composter.

One of Saint-Saëns's most famous work is The Carnival of the Animals, which is a humorous musical suite with fourteen movements meant to depict the sound of various animals. Saint-Saëns prohibited public performance of the work because he believed that it was not serious enough. It was not until 1922, the year after his death, that his work was publicly performed, and it was greeted with enthusiasm from the audience.

One of the movements in Saint-Saëns's Carnival of the Animals is called "The Elephant", which is a duet between the double bass and piano. Listen to the recording of this movement and pay attention to how Saint-Saëns uses the low, weighty tones of the double bass to depict the low voice and heavy footsteps of the elephant.




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