Carl OrffIn this paper I chose to write about Carl Orff. To me, his name is weird, which is one of the reasons I chose to write about him. Carl Orff is a German Composer. He was born July 10, 1895 in Munich, Germany. His family was from Bavaria, a former German state, and was active in the Army of the German Empire. His mother was an amazing pianist and she taught Carl how to play when he was a child. Since his family was active in the Army, in his teens, Carl enlisted. In 1917, he came back home after almost dying from shell shock. Soon after, he began to focus on music. After experimenting with music for a while, he went to Munich Gunther school, an educational institution that united music and movement. By 1920, Carl Orff began his music career and by 1930 he was beginning to rise in fame. Unfortunately, Hitler came to power at that time and the process of making music in Germany changed significantly. During this time, he began composing music for schools. Since he had continued composing while the Nazis were ruling, after the war he was blacklisted along with any other artist that did the same. Unlike many artists, he was able to clear his name, thanks to one of his American friends. Carl Orff died March 29, 1982 at age 86. He died as one of the 20th century germany most known and adored composers. He is mostly well-known for “Carmina Burana” which has a series of poems, instrumental music, and choral songs that in the end create a play.The first song by Carl Orff that I have chosen to talk about is “O Fortuna.” It is the First choral song in “Carmina Burana”. I chose this song because of the way it sounds and how listening to it make me feel. The way Carl lined up the music makes it almost hard not to like it. I definitely can see why this would be the first song in the series. It grabs the listener’s attention right away. When I’m listening to it, I picture something like a kingdom with its king and queen. It’s supposed to sound medieval and I think he does a good job making us be able to picture a scene like that. The song was originally written as a poem, that’s where the lyrics come from. He wanted to take the poem and make it something that everyone would remember. The piece is written for SATB. In most cases, the lyrics are in German but they have been translated into both Latin and English. As for instruments, it was composed with a very specific orchestra consisting of three flutes, three oboes, three clarinets, two bassoons, one contrabassoon, four horns (F), three trumpets (Bb and C), three trombones, one tuba, two pianos, one celesta, strings, and as for the percussion section, five timpani, two snare drums, bass drum, triangle, cymbals, suspended cymbal, antique cymbals, ratchet, castanets, tambourine, sleigh bells, tam-tam, tubular bells, three glockenspiels, gong, and a xylophone. Even with all these instruments, the overall tone of the piece is sad and slow, which is another reason I like it.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5owPoSSOa94The next piece composed by Carl Orff I will talk about is “Ave Maria.” I chose this piece because I love the harmony. It really it beautiful and almost calming. When I see this piece I think of one of those big churches where, when you speak, your voice echos and a man sitting in one of the pues and praying for the girl that he loves. The piece is written for SATB and is written in German. It is supposed to be performed a cappella, the only instruments listed are the notes for the singers. The tone of the piece, to me, sounds sweet but sad. Like perhaps this Ave Maria has died. It doesn’t say why Carl Orff wrote the song but maybe it was because he lost someone close to him. Maybe her name was Ave Maria.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oMJkJVY98VAThe last song I will talk about is “Ecce Gratum.” I chose this piece because I think the song is so cool to listen to. It sounds so cool how the voices blend and how everything just goes together. I also like the fast parts and how the voices stay together through it all. It is written for SATB and is in German. The instrument used in it is just a piano or two. I think that the piece sounds happy and it’s sang fast which just adds to the happy feeling I get. Like “O Fortuna,” “Ecce Gratum” was a poem that Carl Orff took and added music to and now it is a well known musical piece.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qyjD3pa6aAIThough Carl Orff lived during the most dangerous time in Germany, somehow he was still able to create amazing and stunning pieces of music and choral songs. From growing up in music, changing to be a soldier, and coming back only to be challenged by the Nazis and threatened to be killed, it is amazing that he was able to even focus on music.The songs sound the same to a certain extent. The harmonies and the keys sound the same but most of the differences have to deal with how fast or slow the pieces are. If they were all the same speed then they probably would sound the same. Carl Orff’s music is really fun to listen to and I could listen to it all day. I can see why his music is so popular. It’s hard not to like it.