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 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
A Performer's Analysis of Dominick Argento's Miss Havisham's Wedding Night

A Performer's Analysis of Dominick Argento's Miss Havisham's Wedding Night

Date: May 2010
Creator: Mott, Jammieca D.
Description: Dominick Argento's Miss Havisham's Wedding Night is the least explored of his artistic output. A monodrama in one act for soprano, Miss Havisham's Wedding Night contains some of Argento's most beautiful and challenging music of his compositional output. The purpose of a detailed analysis of the structure and content of Argento's Miss Havisham's Wedding Night is to facilitate the solo vocal performer's interpretation. Argento's setting of Miss Havisham's Wedding Night is unique in that he musically translates the manic psychological state of the literary character. Argento structured the one act opera in such a manner that the music would illuminate the text and the audience might connect with the unstable psychological episodes and outbursts demonstrated by Miss Havisham. To that end, each section and phrase has its own psychological motivation, which in turn demands a varied musical and dramatic interpretation. Utilizing selected scenes from Miss Havisham's Wedding Night, the researcher will analyze Argento's musical manifestation of Dickens's literary work. This research will include an investigation into the manner in which Argento uses the shape of melody and the musical phrase along with the harmonic materials to enhance the text and dramatic content. The author will explore the musical nuances Argento ...
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Performer's Analysis of Lili Boulanger's  Clairières dans le ciel: Song Cycle for High Voice and Piano; a Lecture Recital Together with the Role of Blanche in  Dialogues of the Carmelites  by F. Poulenc and Two Recitals of Selected Works by H. Purcell, F. Schubert, S. Prokofieff, E. Chausson, W. A. Mozart, R. Schumann and G. Fauré

A Performer's Analysis of Lili Boulanger's Clairières dans le ciel: Song Cycle for High Voice and Piano; a Lecture Recital Together with the Role of Blanche in Dialogues of the Carmelites by F. Poulenc and Two Recitals of Selected Works by H. Purcell, F. Schubert, S. Prokofieff, E. Chausson, W. A. Mozart, R. Schumann and G. Fauré

Date: December 2001
Creator: Williamson, Deborah
Description: Lili Boulanger was an important composer of early twentieth century French music. Her compositional style represents a development and mastery of musical techniques of the great composers of her time including Fauré, Debussy and Wagner combined with her own creative expression. The result is a compelling musical language that was uniquely her own. She held an important place among her contemporaries in Paris and her accomplishments were considered newsworthy during her lifetime (1893- 1918). She obtained a much sought-after publishing contract with Ricordi. Her more famous sister, Nadia Boulanger, felt that Lili was the better composer of the two, and her peers and music professors clearly felt that both her musical and personal qualities were extraordinary. Evidence of her intelligence, creativity, and artistic growth can be seen in her music. As the first woman to win the Prix de Rome (July 5, 1913), Lili Boulanger, unlike Clara Schumann, Fanny Mendelssohn, or Alma Mahler, was acknowledged and acclaimed during her lifetime for her skill as a composer. Yet, nearly a century later the music of this talented French composer is not as well known as it deserves to be. In an effort to discover the reasons for this relative anonymity, this ...
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Performer's Analysis of Maurice Ravel's  Chansons madécasses: A Lecture Recital, Together with Three Recitals of Selected Works of B. Britten, R. Schumann, S. Barber, T. Pasatieri, F. Poulenc, G. Verdi, T. Arne, and Others

A Performer's Analysis of Maurice Ravel's Chansons madécasses: A Lecture Recital, Together with Three Recitals of Selected Works of B. Britten, R. Schumann, S. Barber, T. Pasatieri, F. Poulenc, G. Verdi, T. Arne, and Others

Date: May 2004
Creator: Ellis, Diana Lea
Description: In his song cycle, Chansons madécasses (1926), a chamber work for voice, piano, flute, and cello, Maurice Ravel combines twentieth-century musical experimentation and exoticism with the late nineteenth-century style characteristics present in the vocal elements and instrumentation. Because early twentieth-century music appears to be closely connected to modern concerns, performers may tend to dismiss the style and technique of the early twentieth century as simply "old-fashioned" rather than examine and consider those elements as resources and valuable tools for interpreting and presenting authentic performances. The focus of this research includes a discussion of the historical, social, and textual implications of the music and poetry; a formal musical analysis of the work, including comparisons of an early twentieth-century, mid-century, and late twentieth-century recordings with regard to the use of vibrato and portamento in the voice, cello, and flute; and an examination of Chansons madécasses for elements of authentic Malagasy music and poetry. The paper also suggests methodologies for performance practice which reflect the results of these analyses. The beginnings of the rejection of traditional form - harmonic, rhythmic, and melodic structures - found in the early part of the century began to free composers and performers to explore musical presentations that ...
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A Performer's Guide to Béla Bartók's Violin Concerto No 1, Opus Posthumous, 1907–1908

A Performer's Guide to Béla Bartók's Violin Concerto No 1, Opus Posthumous, 1907–1908

Date: August 2013
Creator: Jobbágy, Szemoke
Description: Despite Bartók's lasting international fame, some of his works remain unjustly lesser-known. One of the pieces that still resides in relative obscurity is his Violin Concerto No.1—a gem of the violin repertoire that must be brought to the broader public's attention. The fact that the concerto was hidden definitely contributed to its little–known status at first. However, the most important cause for the lack of enthusiasm to tackle this terrific work lies in the unorthodox demands it puts on the violinist. The purpose of this paper is to provide musical and technical suggestions based on Bartók's performing style and on his requirements for performer, which will help to create a more persuasive interpretation of the piece. The guide covers the questions of character, articulation, dynamics, and other performance aspects, and also provides practical suggestions, such as fingerings and bowings. It is hoped that this study will help violin performers to gain additional knowledge and insight into this composition and encourage more frequent performances of it.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Performer's Guide to George Crumb's Makrokosmos  IV (Celestial Mechanics)

A Performer's Guide to George Crumb's Makrokosmos IV (Celestial Mechanics)

Date: August 2008
Creator: Kim, Hyangmee
Description: George Crumb (b.1929)'s Makrokosmos is recognized as one of the masterpieces of twentieth century piano writing. Inexplicably, volume four of Makrokosmos, Crumb's only four-hand piano piece, is rarely studied by Crumb scholars. According to Crumb's program notes, his Makrokosmos is meant to be a hybrid of piano and orchestral sound. Crumb devised a list of signs and abbreviated letters to explain his specific instructions to the performers. The pianists who plan to perform Makrokosmos need to study Crumb's notations carefully in order to faithfully realize the composer's intentions. This dissertation examines the composer's treatment of four hands at the piano. In addition, a performer's analysis and practical "translation" of these techniques is provided, in the hopes of rendering this amazing piece more accessible to pianists in search of new and wonderful repertoire for piano four hands. It is also hoped that future composers will be inspired by Crumb's innovations and imaginative ideas.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Performer's Guide to John Musto's Penelope: A Cycle of Seven Songs for Soprano and Piano

A Performer's Guide to John Musto's Penelope: A Cycle of Seven Songs for Soprano and Piano

Access: Use of this item is restricted to the UNT Community.
Date: December 2005
Creator: Kanakis, Karen
Description: Award-winning composer John Musto stands at the forefront of modern American art-song composition. Many of his songs, such as "Litany" from Shadow of the Blues, have already achieved a place in the standard contemporary repertory for singers. His compositional technique weaves influences of jazz, blues, ragtime, and popular music with classical technique to make music that is decidedly modern but accessible and well liked both by critics and audiences. Unfortunately, though he is still actively composing, very little has been written about Musto and there is a lack of information available about his more recent compositions. This performance guide addresses one of Musto's acclaimed song cycles, Penelope, (a cycle of seven songs for soprano and piano) commissioned and premiered in 2000. The story of the cycle is an updated version of the character Penelope from Homer's The Odyssey and was a collaboration between Musto and poet Denise Lanctot. Including interviews with Musto, and his wife, soprano Amy Burton, who premiered the cycle and for whom it was written, the document provides background information on how the cycle was conceived and gives in-depth performance information on each of the seven songs of Penelope. In addition to musical examples and poetry from ...
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
A Performer's Guide to the First Two Movements of Pyotr Tchaikovsky's Grand Sonata in G Major, Opus 37

A Performer's Guide to the First Two Movements of Pyotr Tchaikovsky's Grand Sonata in G Major, Opus 37

Date: December 2012
Creator: Dorozhkina, Elena V.
Description: The Grand Sonata in G Major, Op.37, composed by Tchaikovsky, is a powerful large-scale composition and a piece of a symphonic scope. However, the sonata did not receive a desired acclaim in the modern repertoire partially due to an obvious lack of performance instructions in the existing editions, which makes the sonata challenging to perform. Thus, in order to reduce the technical challenges and to encourage more frequent performances of the sonata, this dissertation offers a performer's guide that addresses essential elements of pedal indications, phrasing and detailed dynamics, as well as suggestions on voice balancing, agogics, fingering, and hand redistribution. The guide consists of musical examples that are focused on the most challenging sections of the sonata, and is organized in the subsections according to a technique type proposed to facilitate a performance of the sonata. In addition to the examples on application of individual techniques presented in the main body of the dissertation, alternative and more elaborate versions of the suggestions are proposed in the appendices. The dissertation also provides a history of the sonata, and discusses its concept and symphonic principles. Additionally, the work highlights Tchaikovsky's piano style and describes his views on the art of piano ...
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Performing "Camp, Vamp & Femme Fatale": Revisiting, Reinventing & Retelling the Lives of Post-Death, Retro-Gothic Women

Performing "Camp, Vamp & Femme Fatale": Revisiting, Reinventing & Retelling the Lives of Post-Death, Retro-Gothic Women

Date: December 1999
Creator: Ruane, Richard T.
Description: This thesis examines the production process for "Camp, Vamp and Femme Fatale," performed at the University of North Texas in April of 1997. The first chapter applies Henry Jenkins's theory of textual poaching to the authors' and cast's reappropriation of cultural narratives about female vampires. The chapter goes on to survey the narrative, cinematic and critical work on women as vampires. As many of the texts were developed as part of the fantasy role-playing game Vampire: The Masquerade, this chapter also surveys how fantasy role-playing develops unpublished texts that can make fruitful ground for performance studies. The second chapter examines the rehearsal and production process in comparison to the work of Glenda Dickerson and other feminist directors.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Performing Culture, Performing Me: Exploring Textual Power through Rehearsal and Performance

Performing Culture, Performing Me: Exploring Textual Power through Rehearsal and Performance

Date: December 2005
Creator: Gonzales, Melinda Arteaga
Description: This thesis project explores Chicana feminist Gloria Anzaldúa's notion of a new mestiza consciousness, in which the marginalized ethnic American woman transcends her Otherness, breaks down the borders between her different identities, and creates a Thirdspace. Through the rehearsal and performance process, three ethnic American women employed Robert Scholes' model of textuality-the consumption and production of texts-as a framework to construct a new mestiza consciousness, and create a Thirdspace. The project set to determine what strategies were significant rehearsal techniques for encouraging the cast members to exercise textual power and claim a new mestiza identity, a Thirdspace. The results reveal four overarching factors involved in assuming textual power through rehearsal and performance in the production-building trust, having appropriate skills, assuming ownership and responsibility, and overcoming performance anxiety. The discussion addresses the direct link between Thirdspace and Scholes' notion of production of original texts.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Performing the “Classical”: the Gurukula System in Karnatic Music Society

Performing the “Classical”: the Gurukula System in Karnatic Music Society

Date: August 2012
Creator: Harris, Myranda Leigh
Description: Recent scholarship has revealed that the representation of Karnatic music as a “classical” art form in South Indian society was a complicated process bound to the agendas of larger early twentieth-century nationalist projects in India. This thesis explores the notions of classicalness as they are enacted in Karnatic music society through the oral transmission process from guru to shishya, or disciple. Still considered one of the most important emblems of the “classical,” the gurukula (lit. “guru-family”) system has been transformed to accommodate more contemporary lifestyles and reinscribed within many other social and musical processes in South Indian classical music society. This thesis examines the everyday interactions between members of Karnatic music society, particularly the clapping of t?la during a Karnatic music concert and the musical exchanges between percussionists onstage during the tani ?vartanam (Karnatic percussion solo), as public performances reminiscent of the relationship between guru and shishya.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries