Aleatoric Assignment Music Composition Assignments   William Wieland
Aleatoric Music = Chance Music = Indeterminacy   (One or more aspects of a composition are left to chance.)
Composition Component

Form, pitches, rhythms, dynamics, articulations, etc. may be determined by chance. Choose a method of generating random results.
 • Flip a coin. • Throw dice, six-sided or other. • Draw from a deck of cards, 52 or other. • Draw slips of paper or other objects from a hat. • Plinko.
 • Draw dominoes. • Spin a dreidel or other nonround top. • Spin a roulette wheel or wheel of fortune. • Draw numbered balls like bingo or a lottery.
 • Use a random generator. (Search online.) • Use shuffle mode on your iPod. • Use random articles from Wikipedia. • Cow pie bingo. • I Ching.
Next, devise a system of composing music using your random generator. Write or type your rules. Create three short pieces using your system which we can listen to in class. Slightly modify your system for each piece so they are similar, but different.

“The essence of the beautiful is unity in variety.” William Somerset Maugham
Instructions Component

After you have chosen a method of generating random results and created a system of composing music, bring your materials and instructions to class. Other students will create a piece using your method. (Write good instructions.)
Reading/Listening/Watching Component

Please read Music of Changes in Wikipedia.
Next, listen to John Cage: Music of Changes (1951) on YouTube.

More interesting Listening/Watching if you have time:
 • John Cage: "Imaginary Landscape No. 4" for 12 radios (1951)
 • John Cage's 4'33" (piano)
 • John Cage about silence

If time, visit Mozart's Musikalisches Wόrfelspiel.
For Fun

As a computer programming project, my 11-year-old son created a Random Sentence Generator. (My 13-year-old daughter contributed adjectives, nouns, verbs and adverbs.) Please click the button several times.