Date: May 2008
Creator: Brooks, Jonathan
Description: The present study develops a dynamic model of strict and free composition that views them as relative to a specific historical context. The dynamic view espoused here regards free embellishments of an earlier compositional generation as becoming the models for a strict compositional theory in a later one. From the newly established strict compositional models, succeeding generations of composers produce new free embellishments. The first part of the study develops the dynamic conception of a continuously emerging strict composition as the context necessary for understanding Anton Bruckner's compositional methodology with respect to the harmonic instruction of his teacher, Simon Sechter. In other words, I view Sechter's harmonic theories as a strict compositional platform for Bruckner's free compositional applications. Many theoretical treatises of the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth centuries such as those by Christoph Bernhard, Johann Philipp Kirnberger and Sechter acknowledged that strict composition must provide the structural framework for free composition. The above procedure becomes a manner of justifying a free embellishment since a "theorist" can demonstrate or assert the steps necessary to connect it with an accepted model from a contrapuntal or harmonic theory. The present study demonstrates that the justification relationship is a necessary component for understanding any ...
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