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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Degree Discipline: Musicology
 Degree Level: Master's
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Michael Nyman: The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat

Michael Nyman: The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat

Date: May 2008
Creator: Avant-Rossi, Joan
Description: Composer Michael Nyman wrote the one-act, minimalist opera The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat, based off the neurological case study written by Oliver Sacks under the same title. The opera is about a professional singer and professor whom suffers from visual agnosia. In chapter 1, the plot and history of the opera are discussed. Chapter 2 places The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat alongside a selection of minimalist operas from Philip Glass and John Adams. Chapter 3 contains a history of the Fluxus art movement and shows where Fluxus-like examples appear in the opera. Chapter 4 includes Nyman's usage of minimalism, vocal congruencies, and Robert Schumann as musical elements that convey the drama.
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Beyond the Human Voice: Francis Poulenc's Psychological Drama La Voix humaine (1958)

Beyond the Human Voice: Francis Poulenc's Psychological Drama La Voix humaine (1958)

Date: May 2000
Creator: Beard, Cynthia C.
Description: Francis Poulenc's one-character opera La Voix humaine (1958), a setting of the homonymous play by Jean Cocteau, explores the psychological complexities of an unnamed woman as she experiences the end of a romantic relationship. During the forty-minute work, she sings in a declamatory manner into a telephone, which serves as a sign of the unrevealed man at the other end. Poulenc uses musical motives to underscore the woman's changing emotional states as she recalls her past relationship. The musical dramaturgy in this work resignifies Debussy's impressionist symbolism by collapsing devices used in Pelléas et Mélisande in a language that shifts between octatonicism, chromaticism, harmonic and melodic whole tone passages, and diatonicism. This late work recontextualizes elements in Poulenc's Dialogues des Carmélites (1953-56), and the end of the opera provides a theme for his Sonate pour Clarinet et Piano(1962), as Poulenc reflects on his youthful encounters with Cocteau, Erik Satie, and Les Six.
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Mus. Ms. 1511b: A Historical Review of a Lute Manuscript in the Herwarth Collection at the Bavarian Library, Munich

Mus. Ms. 1511b: A Historical Review of a Lute Manuscript in the Herwarth Collection at the Bavarian Library, Munich

Date: August 2007
Creator: Beasley, Douglas William
Description: The purpose of this paper is to create a modern transcription/edition and an historical study of Munich Mus. Ms. 1511b thereby helping to define the social and pedagogical ramifications of lute repertoire from the mid-sixteenth-century. Because of the amateurish nature of the compositions, the conclusion of this study is that a member of the Herwarth family probably used the manuscript for learning purposes. Dance, grounds and other related forms found in the manuscript are discussed. Also included is an incipit concordance that can be used as a cross-reference for further research.
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Belle Musique and Fin' Amour: Thibaut de Champagne, Gace Brulé, and an Aristocratic Trouvére Tradition

Belle Musique and Fin' Amour: Thibaut de Champagne, Gace Brulé, and an Aristocratic Trouvére Tradition

Date: December 2008
Creator: Bly, Emily
Description: Many consider Gace Brulé (c1160-c1213) and Thibaut IV, Count of Champagne, (1201-1253) to have been the greatest trouvères. Writers on this subject have not adequately examined this assumption, having focused their energies on such issues as tracking melodic variants of individual works as preserved in different song-books (or chansonniers), the interpretation of rhythm in performance, and creation of modern editions of these songs. This thesis examines the esteem enjoyed by Gace and Thibaut in both medieval and modern times which derives from their exemplarity of, rather than difference from their noble contemporaries.
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"Marvelous Accidents": The Concerto for Prepared Piano and Chamber Orchestra of John Cage

"Marvelous Accidents": The Concerto for Prepared Piano and Chamber Orchestra of John Cage

Date: December 1999
Creator: Boutwell, Brett N.
Description: John Cage’s Concerto for Prepared Piano and Chamber Orchestra (1950-51) holds a unique position within the composer’s oeuvre as the first work based in part on chance-derived compositional procedures. Cage entered into such practice gradually, incrementally abandoning subjective taste and personal expression through the course of the work. Drawing from the philosophical framework provided by Cage’s "Lecture on Nothing" (1950) and "Lecture on Something" (c. 1951-52), this thesis explores the aesthetic foundations of the concerto and examines Cage’s compositional methodology throughout its three movements. Special attention is paid to the procedure underlying the first movement, whose analysis is based largely on the composer’s manuscript materials for the work.
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The Waning of Victorian Imperialism: Stylistic Dualism in Gustav Holst's One-Act Opera Sāvitri (1908-9)

The Waning of Victorian Imperialism: Stylistic Dualism in Gustav Holst's One-Act Opera Sāvitri (1908-9)

Date: May 2005
Creator: Broughton, Joseph Earl
Description: Gustav Holst's one-act opera Sāvitri (1908-9) represents a turning point in his compositional style, which came at a significant time in British history. Holst combines a simpler style informed by his work with English folksong with the Wagnerian style that permeated his earlier compositions. Although influenced by a British imperialist view of the world, Sāvitri renders Hindu-Indian culture in positive terms without relying on the purely exotic, offers a perspective on gender relationships that does not depend solely on convention, and presents the commoner as the British ideal rather than romanticizing the aristocracy. The result is an opera subtle in its complexity, approaching the profound themes of love, death, and spirituality with emotional restraint and self-control.
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Accessibility and Authenticity in Julia Smith's Cynthia Parker

Accessibility and Authenticity in Julia Smith's Cynthia Parker

Date: December 2007
Creator: Buehner, Katie R.
Description: In 1939, composer Julia Smith's first opera Cynthia Parker dramatized the story of a Texas legend. Smith manipulated music, text, and visual images to make the opera accessible for the audience in accordance with compositional and institutional practices in American opera of the 1930s. Transparent musical themes and common Native Americans stereotypes are used to define characters. Folk music is presented as diegetic, creating a sense of authenticity that places the audience into the opera's Western setting. The opera is codified for the audience using popular idioms, resulting in initial but not lasting success.
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Finding the "Indian" in Amy Beach's Theme and Variations for Flute and String Quartet, op. 80.

Finding the "Indian" in Amy Beach's Theme and Variations for Flute and String Quartet, op. 80.

Date: December 2007
Creator: Burgess, Stephanie J.
Description: Music that is categorized as part of the Indianist movement in American music (ca. 1890-1925) typically evokes Native American culture, ritual, story, or song through compositional gestures. It may also incorporate Native American tunes. Amy Beach (1867-1944) is considered to have composed five Indianist works, but her Theme and Variations for Flute and String Quartet, op. 80 has not been included as one of them. This thesis rethinks categorization of the piece, seeking the "Indian" in it through examination of its gestures, instrumentation, and relationship to contemporary Indianist compositions.
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The Recorder Tutors in 't Uitnement Kabinet

The Recorder Tutors in 't Uitnement Kabinet

Date: August 2005
Creator: Carpenter, Jennifer
Description: Paulus Matthysz, a prominent music printer in Amsterdam during the seventeenth century, published Jacob van Eyck's Der Fluyten Lust-hof and a collection entitled 't Uitnement Kabinet. Three extant copies of Lust-hof include a tutor Vertoninge...op de Handt-fluit, presumably by Matthysz, and a tutor by Gerband van Blanckenburgh, Onderwyzinge...op deHandt-Fluyt. Their content is not correlated with Lust-hof, and they were presumably designed for inclusion in the Kabinet II. Confusion over the tutors' conception has led to published misinformation jeopardizing their historical worth. The casual generalizations regarding the two tutors can be refuted by reestablishing the interrelationship between the tutors and the two collections. This paper employs a comprehensive study into their origins in order to rectify how the tutors are referenced in the twenty-first century.
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Eighteenth-Century French Oboes: A Comparative Study

Eighteenth-Century French Oboes: A Comparative Study

Date: May 2001
Creator: Cleveland, Susannah
Description: The oboe, which first came into being in the middle of the seventeenth century in France, underwent a number of changes throughout the following century. French instruments were influenced both by local practices and by the introduction of influences from other parts of Europe. The background of the makers of these instruments as well as the physical properties of the oboes help to illuminate the development of the instrument during this period. The examination of measurements, technical drawings, photographs, and biographical data clarify the development and dissemination of practices in oboe building throughout eighteenth-century France. This clarification provides new insight into a critical period of oboe development which has hitherto not been exclusively addressed.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
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