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Unread 04-24-2012, 05:35 PM   #1
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Movable Do Solfege

So... Title. We have some scholars here, what do you guys think about the movable do method? Useful? Useless?

Personally... I think it's ....ing retarded. But I life in a non-english-speaking country, and what you (english speaking people) would call solfege are the actual names for my notes.
So every time I hear someone refer to a scale degree as a solfege note I ....ing pop a vein.

This recently sprung my mind because I'm taking some online classes on Berklee and they use Movable Do. This make me sing half of the material wrong, because I keep saying Do and... ....... singing DO, when I'm expected for some reason to sing a B. URGH! /rant.

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Unread 04-24-2012, 05:49 PM   #2
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When going from fixed do to movable (or vice versa) can be really confusing. For some reason, at the primary and secondary levels in Australia, we're taught moveable do, but at the tertiary level, we have to switch to fixed!

There are some advantages, such as once you've learned movable after being fluent in fixed, you'll be really good at sight transposition. I also found that when learning the modes of the major scale, thinking about them in moveable do made it much easier to see the pattern.

In the end, I think its probably good to know both styles, that way you're a more compatible musician. (However, I agree that having multiple systems that basically do the same thing and have such similar names is frustrating.)
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Unread 04-25-2012, 03:56 AM   #3
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Fixed Do is better, movable Do is faster. A lot of American institutions use movable Do because music education tends to start later in life here. Movable Do reinforces the idea of tonality and transposition, so the people that form music curricula think they can kill two birds with one stone by teaching sight singing and harmony at the same time. The US inherited Germany's system of calling notes by letter names rather than by solfège syllables, so the perception of solfège is markedly different in this country. One can't exactly sing "A, C-sharp, D, E, F-sharp, B, B-flat, G, E-flat", so I see movable Do solfège as a way to make up for a deficiency in the letter name system. If everybody learned fixed Do, the world would be a better place. However, both movable and fixed Do have their merits and different uses. Movable Do looks at the process of music and requires extra thought, fixed Do is absolute and doesn't beg much thinking.

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