Guided Listening #5: Soundscape

For this Guided Listening, you will need the following:

A copy of these teaching steps
Audio asset: Excerpts I and II from Symphonie Gaspésienne
Image asset: James M. Barnsley, Percé Rock, Baie des Chaleurs
All assets are provided below.

I. Listen and Describe

  • Listen to the opening of Champagne's Symphonie Gaspésienne, (audio asset: Excerpt I from Symphonie Gaspésienne).
  • Ask: What scene can you imagine this might be describing? Can you hear any recognizable sounds that might exist on the Gaspé Peninsula?
  • Give the following information:

Composer Claude Champagne says this opening music is a description of morning with the sounds of church bells, ships, and waves in the background.

  • Ask: What instrument and/or notes reminds you of church bells?

II. Listen and Look

  • Show James M. Barnsley's Percé Rock, Baie des Chaleurs (image asset). What do you see? What sounds do you see in this painting?
  • Tell students that Champagne describes a scene similar to this in his music.
  • Listen to audio asset: Excerpt II. Do you hear any of the sounds you imagined in the painting? Can imagine the ascending and descending strings as a depiction of the flight of diving seagulls?
  • Note that pierced rock is a familiar formation to those living on the Gaspé.
  • Listen to the excerpt again. What part of this section do you think might be depicting the pierced rock?

Excerpt I from Symphonie Gaspésienne (0:01:09)

Excerpt I from Symphonie Gaspésienne - Play now

Warning: Audio file is larger than 6MbDownload (1.65Mb)

Champagne's Symphonie Gaspésienne, written for orchestra, depicts a landscape that includes the pierced rock of the Gaspe Peninsula. His ascending and diving strings are reminiscent of seagulls, and heavy brass parts allude to the strength of the rock's shape.

Excerpt II from Symphonie Gaspésienne (0:01:23)

Excerpt II from Symphonie Gaspésienne - Play now

Warning: Audio file is larger than 6MbDownload (1.99Mb)

Champagne's Symphonie Gaspésienne, written for orchestra, depicts a landscape that includes the pierced rock of the Gaspé Peninsula. His ascending and diving strings are reminiscent of seagulls, and heavy brass parts allude to the strength of the rock's shape.

James M. Barnsley, Percé Rock, Baie des Chaleurs. Champagne's Symphonie Gaspésienne, written for orchestra, depicts a landscape that includes the pierced rock of the Gaspé Peninsula.  This is a representation of this formation by Canadian painter James M.

James M. Barnsley, Percé Rock, Baie des Chaleurs
Percé Rock, or pierced rock, is a well known to people who lived on or have visited the Gaspé Peninsula. This is a representation of this formation by Canadian painter James M. Barnsley, a founder of the New York Water Color Society.

Credits and Copyright

  • Audio asset: Excerpt I from Symphonie Gaspésienne by Claude Champagne
    1945, Claude Champagne
  • Image asset: Percé Rock, Baie des Chaleurs, James M. Barnsley
    National Gallery of Canada
  • Audio asset: Excerpt II from Symphonie Gaspésienne by Claude Champagne
    1945, Claude Champagne
Virtual Museum of Canada

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