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 Department: College of Music
Arvo Pärt and Three Types of His Tintinnabuli Technique
Arvo Pärt, an Estonian composer, was born in 1935. Most of the works at the beginning of his career were for piano in the neo-classical style. After that, he turned his interest to serial music and continued creating works with serial techniques throughout the 1960s. After his "self-imposed silence" period (during the years 1968-1976), Pärt emerged with a new musical style, which he called tintinnabuli. Although, this technique was influenced by music from the medieval period, the texture and function of its musical style cannot be described easily in terms of any single musical technique of the past. This study explores the evolution of Arvo Pärt's tintinnabuli technique in its first decade 1976-1985, which is divided into three different types. It provides musical examples from the scores of selected works, Für Alina, Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten, Cantate Domino canticum novum, Missa Sillabica, Stabat Mater and Es sang vor langen Jahren, and their analyses with supporting interpretative sketches. The goal of this thesis is to provide the reader a basis for understanding and recognizing the different types of Pärt's tintinnabuli technique. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271844/
A Description of Sixth Grade Choir Programs: Student Grouping According to Gender and Teacher Perception of Adolescent Behavior and Vocal Physiology
The purpose of this study was to provide a description of teacher perceptions concerning behavioral and physiological vocal issues among current gender groupings in sixth-grade choir classrooms through the collection of survey research data. Participants selected for this study consisted of registered Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area choral directors of the Texas Music Educators Association. Results of the study indicated that more girls were enrolled in sixth-grade choir than boys and that mixed choirs were more common than gender-specific choirs in sixth grade. Results also indicated that teachers perceived evidence of early voice change among both sixth grade boys and girls, and that there was a difference in behavior as students showed signs of puberty. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271845/
Modern Api Design and Physical Computing Techniques in Just Intonation Performance Practice
approached previously by both Harry Partch and Ben Johnston, and proposes the decoupling of interface and sound production as a way forward. The design and implementation of a software instrument and a hardware prototype are described, both using a simple API for variable tuning instruments. The hardware prototype uses physical computing techniques to control the tuning of a string with a servo motor, while the software instrument exists entirely in a web browser. Finally, potential algorithms for clients of the API are presented, and the effectiveness of the hardware prototype is evaluated by measuring its pitch accuracy. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271901/
Piano-related Musculoskeletal Disorders: Posture and Pain
A healthy posture protects the body-supporting functions and prevents injuries by maintaining balance. Literature in performing arts medicine suggests that posture is an important component to prevent piano-playing related injuries. However, no known research studies have quantified, characterized, and compared pianists' sitting postures. The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between playing postures and perceived pain among pianists. This study applied innovative approach using qualitative and quantitative methods, combined with three-dimensional motion captured technology. To examine risk factors related pianists' postures, three-dimensional motion-capture cameras recorded approximate 40 pianists' postures in various situations; data recordings were combined with a statistical method to investigate pain-posture correlations. Results reveal that the degrees of head-neck or body tilt angles are the tendency of risk factors for piano-playing related pain. Results from this study may have multiple practical implications among which are: (1) a risk factor pain, injury index, or indicator (2) a performance habits profile and (3) practice guide to prevention of piano-playing related musculoskeletal disorders. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271895/
Don Gillis's Symphony No 5½: Music for the People
Don Gillis wrote Symphony No. 5½ (1947) in order to reconcile the American public with modern art music. By synthesizing jazz (as well as other American folk idioms), singable melodies, and humor, and then couching them into symphonic language, Gillis produced a work that lay listeners could process and enjoy. The piece was an immediate success and was played by orchestras across the globe, but it did not retain this popularity and it eventually faded from relevancy. This study focuses on elements that contributed to the initial efficacy and ultimate decline of the work. Due to its pervasive popular influences, Symphony No. 5½ is a crystallized representation of time in which it was written, and it soon became dated. Don Gillis did not harbor the idea that Symphony No. 5½ would grant him great wealth or musical immortality; he had a more pragmatic goal in mind. He used every musical element at his disposal to write a symphonic work that would communicate directly with the American people via a musical language they would understand. He was successful in this regard, but the dialogue ended soon after mid-century. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271867/
A Survey of Four Original Works for Clarinet and Guitar and Their Effect on Compositional Output for the Repertoire
In the last three decades there has been a surge in original compositions for clarinet and guitar resulting in the repertoire virtually doubling in size. However, documentation and research of original works in published sources remains limited and is quickly becoming outdated. This document reviews the current resources and reviews the newer published materials. Early chamber music works for guitar and clarinet typically required the guitar to supply harmonic support to the clarinet's upper voice, which carried the themes. An examination of the earliest works, which date from the early nineteenth century, suggests, in other words, that the two parts were not treated equally, in contrast to modern-day chamber music, in which melodic elements are proportionally balanced between the two instruments. A critical survey and comparison of four significant works from the repertoire reveals a development toward motivic balance, a progression towards melodic equality that continued in subsequent compositions. The four works surveyed are: Heinrich Neumann's Serenata Svizzera Op.29, Ferdinand Rebay's Sonata for Clarinet and Guitar No.2 in A minor, Libby Larsen's Blue Third Piece, and Gernot Wolfgang's Four Miniatures. An extensive compilation of over 300 original published and unpublished works for clarinet and guitar, bass clarinet and guitar, and more than one clarinet and/or guitar is included. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271856/
An Analysis of Pitch Organization in Villa-lobos's Rudepoêma
Heitor Villa-Lobos (1887-1959) stands central to the music history of the Brazilian twentieth century. His music represents a synthesis of the European art influences he absorbed and his quest to find a true Brazilian identity, which was not rooted in the deliberate imitation of Brazilian folk elements, but rather in the natural assimilation of them in his compositional style. His early compositions embody strong post-romantic, impressionistic tendencies, especially in regard to their harmonies and use of tone color, whereas the works from the 1920's and onwards show Villa-Lobos increasingly asserting his unusual and strong voice. Villa-Lobos's large-scale composition for piano, Rudepoêma, was composed between 1921 and 1926, and stands as one of the most significant contributions to the Latin-American piano literature. Despite of its importance in Villa-Lobos's oeuvre, it has largely eluded analytical attention. Discourse on Villa-Lobos is often marked by a somewhat one-dimensional approach that identifies the folk and rhythmic elements as the most important characteristics of his compositional style, and displays a certain reticence with regard to in-depth analysis of other parameters of his works. This study redresses the imbalance in the general approach to analytical assessment of Villa-Lobos's oeuvre by illustrating that pitch organization plays an indispensable role in establishing formal unity between the multiple sections of this complex work. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271848/
Transcription of Baroque Works for Classical Guitar: J S Bach's Sonata in D Minor (Bwv 964) As Model
Continuing the common practice of composers of the Baroque period to transcribe their own or other composers' works for a different instrument, this dissertation contributes to studies of J. S. Bach's repertory as the source of program material for the classical guitar. It is from differences revealed through a comparative analysis of Bach's Violin Sonata No. 2 (BWV 1003) and his harpsichord arrangement thereof – Sonata in D minor (BWV 964) – that principles of transcription are derived and organized according to descriptive categories. Emulating the composer-transcriber with knowledge of the capabilities and limitations of the instruments involved, the arrangement procedures are applied to the classical guitar. In so doing, this study addresses the emerging challenges and complexities in creating an idiomatic arrangement. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271851/
James Wintle's Northwest Miniatures for Flute, Trumpet and Piano (1998): a Performance Guide
James Wintle's, Northwest Miniatures for flute, trumpet and piano is a unique work in the chamber music repertoire. In addition, the use of auxiliary instruments makes this piece a rarity in the flute and trumpet chamber music repertoire. There are a limited number of resources presently available to performers regarding Northwest Miniatures.This dissertation provides a pedagogical performance guide addressing the inherent challenges for the flutist and this instrumentation and serves as a new resource for performers and scholars of this work. It provides a performance analysis of the piece along with pertinent pedagogical information and exercises to assist the flutist. Insight from the composer on how to address these challenges is also included. Because there are a limited number of scholarly resources available on the subject of flute and trumpet chamber music, this dissertation is a significant contribution to this genre of repertoire. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271914/
A Performance Guide to Bernd Alois Zimmermann's Trumpet Concerto, "Nobody Knows De Trouble I See"
Bernd Zimmermann's Trumpet Concerto, "Nobody Knows de Trouble I See" is an important twentieth-century work for trumpet. Despite the stature of the composition, it has rarely been performed due to its considerable musical and technical demands. Integrating these diverse demands into a coherent performance requires careful consideration of the various performance practice consequences. The study begins by exploring the historical and musical context in which the work was written. It then considers the individual musical elements of the concerto. Finally, the study examines the performance practice implications of the work. The performance guide serves as a framework for making intelligent musical and technical decisions through context, analysis, and practical considerations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271825/
Some Soundwalks (Denton, Tx)
some soundwalks (Denton, TX) is an audio portrait of the Denton square - the area in downtown Denton bordered by the streets Oak, Hickory, Elm, and Locust. For three months (June - August, 2012), I went on soundwalks in this area, recording the soundscape and collecting material from each hour of the twenty-four hours of the day. The resulting work is presented as a layered montage of this gathered material that takes the listener on a twenty-four hour journey through the Denton square in about eighteen minutes. Ultimately, this sonic portrait of the Denton square is my subjective reaction to the daily soundscape of an area of Denton that embodies a strong sense of tradition combined with a newer presence of a growing population. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271833/
Dario Castello's Music for Sackbut: the Sonate Concertate in Stil Moderno (1629)
Dario Castello's Sonate concertate in stil moderno is a collection of 29 trio sonatas in two volumes, with 10 of them employing the sackbut. These works represent a significant repertoire for the sackbut in an era where specific instrumentation was only starting to become a convention. While these pieces are often studied, performed and recorded in Europe, most American trombonists are not aware of their existence. This study seeks to acquaint the American trombonist with the sonatas of Castello and to provide performance suggestions for those less familiar with this genre. Chapter 1 presents a survey of the current literature on Castello. Chapter 2 provides an historical background for music in Venice in the early 17th century, while Chpater 3 focuses on the composer and his music for sackbut. Chapter 4 investigages the sonata in early 17th century Venice. Chapter 5 provides an insight into early baroque performance practice by discussing principles such as affect, tempo, ornamentation, diminution and articulation. Examples from the ten sonatas are used to illustrate these principles, providing the modern trombonist with a framework in which to study Castello's music. The final chapter discusses the implications of this study on the American trombone curriculum. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271830/
The Formative Years: an Exploration of the Early Training and Song Juvenilia of Samuel Barber
In the art of song composition, American composer Samuel Barber was the perfect storm. Barber spent years studying under superb instruction and became adept as a pianist, singer, composer, and in literature and languages. The songs that Barber composed during those years of instruction, many of which have been posthumously published, are waypoints on his journey to compositional maturity. These early songs display his natural inclinations, his self-determination, his growth through trial and error, and the slow flowering of a musical vision, meticulously cultivated by the educational opportunities provided to him by his family and his many devoted mentors. Using existing well-known and recently uncovered biographical data, as well as both published and unpublished song juvenilia and mature songs, this dissertation examines the importance of Barber's earliest musical and academic training in relationship to his development as a song composer. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271790/
Brass Band History and Idiomatic Writing in Brass Music
The purpose of this research was to explore historical perspective of brass music. There is a brief history of brass bands in Britain. Furthermore, the paper examines the differences between two brass band pieces in the repertoire, A Western Fanfare by Eric Ewazen and Brass Symphony by Jan Koetsier. Both of these pieces were compared and contrasted against the author's newly composed work for brass, Two Companion Pieces for Brass Ensemble. The paper covers different techniques commonly used in brass writing and points these techniques out in all three pieces. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271838/
Transfantasies for Flauto Traverso, Computer Music, and Dance
TransFantasies is an interdisciplinary composition for Baroque flute (flauto traverso), computer music, and dance. A crucial component of the work is an interactive hardware and software environment that provides the opportunity for the players to shape aspects of the work during the performance. This essay discusses the influences that inspired the work and presents an in-depth analysis of notable elements of the composition. Primary issues include compositional models for gesture-based composition, historical performance practices, interactivity, and relationships between music and dance. The final component of the essay details the software component designed to create the composition. It also discusses music technology in current practice and its role in this particular work. At its core, TransFantasies is concerned with those moments where computer-influenced decisions and human behaviors collide. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271813/
Derivation of the Thematic Material and Intervallic Gestures From the Main Theme in Fantasia Carioca By Sérgio Assad
The quantity of classical guitar literature reached a new peak late in the twentieth century with many famous guitarists publishing their own works for solo classical guitar. This increase in the published guitar literature resulted in a decline of the relative analytical discussions of contemporary guitar works. Sérgio Assad is a perfect example of an active guitarist/composer whose works are frequently performed in guitar recitals and yet very little discussion has been provided attempting to gain a deeper understanding of his compositional language. The purpose of this study is to two-fold: first, to show that Fantasia Carioca (1994) is a very carefully organized work and includes an intricate network of thematic material developed through a spectrum of intervallic gestures, of which all derive from the main theme of the piece; second, to provide a deeper insight into the compositional language of Sérgio Assad through a demonstration of different compositional procedures to which the composer resorts. This one-movement piece reveals a high level of organization present in Sérgio Assad's style. The entire thematic material is carefully derived from the main theme. Each thematic unit shows a set of predetermined characteristics that allow these units to react to particular textures and situations. The thematic organization is interwoven with important intervallic gestures and relationships, which lead the development of the thematic material. The insight into the applied techniques and structural elements provides a highly beneficial pool of information for anybody who decides to perform this piece. The offered arguments also serve as a good starting point for further analytical approaches and examinations of the growing oeuvre of Assad's classical guitar music. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271928/
It's Not Fusion: Hybridity in the Music of Vijay Iyer and Rudresh Mahanthappa
This thesis concerns the performance of identity in the music of Indian American jazz musicians Rudresh Mahanthappa and Vijay Iyer. In combining the use of Indian classical music elements with jazz, Iyer and Mahanthappa create music that is inextricably tied to their multifaceted identities. Traditional musicological analysis is juxtaposed with a theoretical framework that draws on postcolonial theory and the history of Asian immigrant populations to the U.S. I chronicle the interactions between Indian and Western music and link it to larger issues of Asian American identity formation and activism through music. Through interviews and transcriptions of studio recordings, I identify specific compositional and improvisational strategies of the musicians. I emphasize the role of individual agency in the formation of second-generation identities, drawing attention to the distinct ways that Iyer and Mahanthappa approach their music. Finally, I connect this research to a larger discourse on Indian American artistic identity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177203/
Fidget, Sway, and Swerve: Three Works Inspired By Movement From the Intricate Maneuvers Series
Intricate Maneuvers is a series of musical works that were composed using movement as a model for compositional processes and forms. This essay presents in-depth analyses of three works from the series; Fidget, Sway: The Mildest Form of Falling, and Swerve for Chamber Ensemble. The analysis of each work highlights correlations between the musical characteristics of that work and the temporal, spatial, contextual, and psychological implications of the motion after which it was modeled. The third chapter also demonstrates the ways in which the creation of Sway was influenced by materials and processes taken from Ruth Crawford's String Quartet 1931. In order to investigate the question of how life experiences can function as models for compositional processes, the essay examines precedents for the compositional modeling of extra-musical ideas and images in the works of Bed?ich Smetana, Elliott Carter and Roger Reynolds. It also discusses approaches to modeling movement in music created for dance. Throughout the Intricate Maneuvers series, movement is modeled not merely to create an association between a musical work and a particular movement pattern, but rather to infuse the compositions with the dynamism that defines a particular kinetic experience. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177259/
Osvaldo Lacerda’s Sonata for Flute and Piano (1959): A Performance Guide with Historical Background of Brazilian Genres Embolada, Serestra, and Baião
Osvaldo da Costa Lacerda (March 23, 1927-July 18, 2011), one of the most significant Brazilian composers of the twentieth century, wrote more than 250 compositions. The purpose of this dissertation is to provide a history and analysis of the Brazilian genres characterized in Osvaldo Lacerda’s, Sonata for Flute and Piano. Written in 1959, the sonata represents traditional Brazilian rhythms within a classical structure and modern harmony. The work provides a basis for the exploration of the embolada, the serestas, and the baião, examples of Brazilian typical song forms and rhythms. Analysis of the historical roots of these nationalistic elements will provide appropriate performance practice considerations when playing Brazilian rhythms; and because this sonata only exists in manuscript form, the historical analysis and performance guide will be of service to disseminate this important Brazilian work. As a basis for a critical edition of the Sonata for Flute and Piano, this initial effort will provide performers with a context for Brazilian flute music. Chapters include the Lacerda’s biography, a background of the nationalistic movement in Brazil and the composers who have influenced Osvaldo Lacerda. Definitions of embolada, serestas, and baião is also provided. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177200/
A Performer's Guide to the First Two Movements of Pyotr Tchaikovsky's Grand Sonata in G Major, Opus 37
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 performance. A special attention is also given to two musical references repeatedly embedded into the sonata: the bell-like sonorities and Dies irae melody. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177192/
Aphorismen, Capriccio, and Heptameron for Piano Solo By Jürg Baur: a Performer's Guide
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The purpose of this dissertation is to give instruction regarding the performance of three important piano works by Jürg Baur (1918-2010). Aphorismen, Capriccio, and Heptameron stand out as his most significant piano works both because of their length and because of their pianistic complexity. Since Baur had a successful career as both teacher and composer during his lifetime, his acclaimed works received many honors in Germany. His works can be performed by intermediate to advanced students. Intermediate students can easily offer simpler pieces like Aphorismen in competitions, while pieces like Capriccio and Heptameron better are suited to a more advanced level. Although some of his compositions are difficult to perform compared with other modern German works, Baur's music is more accessible. In the article, "Auf der Spuren der alten Zeit" Baur is quoted to state that Paul Hindemith and Bela Bartok's music influenced his own compositional ideas. However, although Baur is a modern composer, he didn't write in a totally atonal style, but rather attempted to broaden tonality. While Heptameron is atonal, Aphorismen and Capriccio give the impression of tonality, thus they are more accessible to the audience. I was fortunate enough to study Aphorismen with Baur as well as receiving advice for performance of Capriccio and some movements of Heptameron. Therefore, I gained a primary source of instruction, particularly in regards to pedal markings, rhythmic indications, voice balancing, finger suggestions, articulation markings, and tone of musical expression. In this dissertation, I include my own instructions (accepted by the composer) along with the composer's intentions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc177239/
Korean Traditional Elements and Contemporary Compositional Techniques in Hyowon Woo’s Choral Music As Reflected in Gloria
Among native Korean choral composers, Hyowon Woo has emerged as one of the most significant representatives of choral genre, both in Korea and internationally. She has created a new style of choral music that combines traditional Korean musical elements with contemporary Western compositional techniques, in a synthesis that generates new sonorities and effects. Her choral music falls into three basic categories: music employing direct quotation of Korean folk tunes or other elements, which produce typical Korean sonorities; music using Western practices, which produce modern and Western flavors; and music combining Korean traditional methods with modern Western concepts. Hyowon Woo’s unique contribution to contemporary Korean choral music is ideally represented by her Gloria, which will form the basis for this study. Because traditional Korean music culture has such a strong presence and influence on her choral compositions, detailed knowledge of these elements are essential for the study and performance of her work. The combination of traditional Korean music and Western contemporary techniques lies at the core of her compositional style, and is the principal focus of this study. A detailed understanding of these stylistic elements, both Korean and Western, and how they work together to achieve the composer’s purpose and vision, is vital to achieving an informed performance of this work.  This study is intended to supply the conductor these needed tools and to add to the small but growing body of literature related to the performance practice not only of Woo’s significant body of choral compositions, but of Korean choral music in general. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149552/
Toward a Descriptive Eidetics of Atonality: a Phenomenological Analysis of Webern Op 3, No 1
David Lewin, in his 1986 article “Music Theory, Phenomenology, and Modes of Perception,” offers a promising methodological approach for the analysis of tonal music from a phenomenological perspective. Lewin’s phenomenological method has a propensity to render seemingly contradictory readings in such a way that their respective validities can be preserved by articulating them within differentiated contexts. Expanding upon Lewin’s phenomenological work with analyzing tonal music, I propose that a phenomenological investigation of an atonal song, Webern op. 3, no. 1, from within a variety of differentiated contexts can shed light upon what it means to perceive a piece of music as being “not in a key.” This thesis will open with an introduction to Lewin’s phenomenological work and the writings of Edmund Husserl and Izchak Miller that Lewin used as a point of departure. The analysis of Webern op. 3, no. 1, that follows will regard the voice and piano parts as differentiated musical contexts in order to investigate the interaction between these contexts as they generally undermine the perception of tonality in the song. Finally, the notion of a “musical context” as an organizing factor of musical perception will be expanded to include the different analytical approaches of Olli Väisälä and Elmar Budde as they interact to reveal contrasting aspects of the song’s multivalent structure. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149660/
“Sounds for Adventurous Listeners”: Willis Conover, the Voice of America, and the International Reception of Avant-garde Jazz in the 1960S
In “Sounds for Adventurous Listeners,” I argue that Conover’s role in the dissemination of jazz through the Music USA Jazz Hour was more influential on an educational level than what literature on Conover currently provides. Chapter 2 begins with an examination of current studies regarding the role of jazz in Cold War diplomacy, the sociopolitical implications of avant-garde jazz and race, the convergence of fandom and propaganda, the promoter as facilitator of musical trends, and the influence of international radio during the Cold War. In chapter 3 I introduce the Friends of Music USA Newsletter and explain its function as a record of overseas jazz reception and a document that cohered a global network of fans. I then focus on avant-garde debates of the 1960s and discuss Conover’s role overseas and in the United States. Chapter 4 engages social purpose and jazz criticism in the 1960s. I discuss Conover’s philosophy on social responsibility, and how his contributions intersected with other relevant discourses on race on the eve of the civil rights movement. I argue that Conover embodied two personas: one as jazz critic and promoter in the United States, and the other as an international intermediary. In chapter 5 I discuss how Conover presented the avant-garde to his overseas audience. I argue that through his efforts to broadcast jazz impartially, he legitimized avant-garde and emphasized its qualities as art music. In chapter 6 I explore fandom studies as they apply to the formation of Music USA as a global fan network. I discuss the early roots of Conover’s interest in science fiction fandom as a motivation for the implementation of the Friends of Music USA (FOMUSA) groups. Chapter 7 concludes in a discussion of the deification of Conover though the medium of radio in the midst of the Cold War. I argue that, through manipulation of sound resources, Conover composed his broadcasts in a way that allowed him to improvise creatively. Finally, I discuss the effect of a radio personality on crowds and the impact of Conover’s music programming in light of studies concerning deejays as objects of devotion. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149564/
Correcting the Record: a Comparison of Vladimir Ashkenazy’s Urtext-based Edition of Pictures at an Exhibition with Orchestration By Ravel and Stokowski
Modest Mussorgsky (1839-1881) never published his piano suite, Pictures at an Exhibition. The first publication of the Pictures was Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s (1844-1908) piano edition in 1886, five years after Mussorgsky’s death. Among several piano editions of Pictures, Manfred Schandert’s urtext piano edition of 1984 has shed new light on the piano suite. The urtext edition is based on a facsimile of Mussorgsky’s autograph, and Schandert’s authoritative urtext contains all of Mussorgsky’s musical indications that previous editions neglected to include. Previous orchestrations based on less comprehensive editions include well-known orchestrations by Maurice Ravel (1875-1937) and Leopold Stokowski (1882-1977). Vladimir Ashkenazy (b. 1937), on the other hand, derived his orchestration directly from the Schandert edition. In this study I argue that Ashkenazy offers “corrections” to his predecessors, Ravel and Stokowski, whose orchestrations differ—at times radically—from Mussorgsky’s autograph. This dissertation thus will explore the significant features of Ashkenazy’s orchestration in relation to the urtext edition by comparing it to the orchestrations of Ravel and Stokowski. In an age of attempts to present “authentic” versions of past music, Ashkenazy’s orchestration provides an authenticity that other orchestrations lack. Ashkenazy’s orchestration of Pictures at an Exhibition provides conductors an alternative performance option that is both effective and more closely related to Mussorgsky’s autograph. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149572/
Transformation of Themes, Controlled Pianistic Textures, and Coloristic Effects in Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsodies Nos 6, 10, and 12
Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsodies are uniformly considered highly challenging in terms of technical execution. However, their artistic value is frequently questioned. This dissertation examines the compositional elements that are often overlooked in these virtuoso works, and provides a viewpoint into their interpretative characteristics. Furthermore, it pursues a claim that besides being excellent performance pieces, these works also make an intriguing contribution to Liszt scholarship, and deserve meaningful consideration in terms of their artistic quality. Following the Introduction (Chapter 1), Chapter 2 provides a brief historical perspective of the critical affirmation Liszt the composer encountered from the musical society. It also includes a short background on Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsodies, as well as the general reactions these works evoked from pianists, audiences, and scholars, during the time they were composed to the present day. As the main body of the dissertation, Chapter 3 investigates the three primary compositional concepts found in Rhapsodies Nos. 6, 10, and 12. These concepts are divided into three subchapters: Transformation of Themes, Controlled Pianistic Textures, and Coloristic Effects. Each of these subchapters provides explanatory information, as well as some of the most characteristic passages presented. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149679/
“A Metaphor for the Impossibility of Togetherness”: Expansion Processes in Gubaidulina’s First String Quartet
This thesis illustrates how I hear processes of expansion organizing musical materials in the First String Quartet. By employing a flexible approach to expansion and developing models of wedge and additive expansions beyond the bounds of specific voice-leading or rhythmic augmentation procedures, expansion processes can be understood in each of the varied episodes of the quartet. Gubaidulina’s use of expansion processes, embodied organically in pitch, rhythm, form, and physical space, unifies the episodic materials of the First String Quartet and provides an inevitable conclusion to the work’s loose narrative. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149671/
Claude Bolling’s Toot Suite for Trumpet and Jazz Piano: a Performance Guide
Claude Bolling’s Toot Suite for Trumpet and Jazz Piano that was premiered by French virtuoso trumpeter Maurice Andre in 1980 is an important work in the trumpet repertoire. At present, there is limited research regarding Toot Suite. Almost all of the six movements within Toot Suite are performed on a different instrument: C trumpet for Allegre, Eb trumpet for Mystique, Bb cornet for Rag-Polka, Bb piccolo trumpet for Marche, Bb flugelhorn for Vesperale and Bb piccolo for Spirituelle. Chapter 1 examines the life and musical background of the composer. It also exposes the history surrounding the origin of Toot Suite. Chapter 2 discusses the musical influences of the composer that are found in Toot Suite. Chapter 3 provides an analysis of existing studio recordings. Chapter 4 offers specific suggestions regarding preparation and performance of Toot Suite. Chapters 5 and 6 conclude the guide with interviews with the composer and prominent trumpet performers and pedagogues that have recorded and/or have performed Toot Suite live. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149650/
The Impact of the Development of the Fortepiano on the Repertoire Composed for It From 1760–1860
The relationship between piano manufacturer and composer is interactive, and consequently both compositions and performance styles evolved organically due to this relationship. Early on, the instrument had more influence on the composer, whereas with the instrument’s establishment, composers began to exert more influence on the subsequent development of the instrument through their requests of manufacturers. The relationship between pianist-composers and manufacturers is important for pianists to study and understand, as well as the actual sound of a composer’s fortepiano and the way he performed on it. Through studying the development of the piano and the relationship between manufacturers and composers, pianists can reinterpret compositions before the mid nineteenth century, such as Mozart, Beethoven, Dussek, Chopin, and Liszt, using their knowledge of the aforementioned to bring a different perspective to their performances on the modern piano. There are numerous manufacturers and composers who made important contributions to the development of the piano. This dissertation focuses on selected pianist-composers and fortepiano manufacturers, and the impact of their relationship on piano literature before 1860. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149630/
Johann Nepomuk Hummel’s Transcriptions of Beethoven´s Symphony No 2, Op 36: a Comparison of the Solo Piano and the Piano Quartet Versions
Johann Nepomuk Hummel was a noted Austrian composer and piano virtuoso who not only wrote substantially for the instrument, but also transcribed a series of important orchestral pieces. Among them are two transcriptions of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 36- the first a version for piano solo and the second a work for piano quartet, with flute substituting for the traditional viola part. This study will examine Hummel’s treatment of the symphony in both transcriptions, looking at a variety of pianistic devices in the solo piano version and his particular instrumentation choices in the quartet version. Each of these transcriptions can serve a particular purpose for performers. The solo piano version is an obvious virtuoso vehicle, whereas the quartet version can be a refreshing program alternative in a piano quartet concert. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149620/
Conductor Awareness of, Knowledge of, and Attitude Toward Sound Intensity Levels Generated During Ensemble-based Instructional Activities in College-level Schools of Music
In 2011, the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM) took an official position to recognize the importance of hearing health and injury prevention as a standard for all member-accredited institutions. This is the largest national acknowledgement promoting hearing health and safety within the music discipline and among students seeking a music degree in the United States. The purpose of the study is to describe what conductors (i.e., instructors) of college-based ensembles know about hearing health and the generation of sound intensity levels. The study aimed to describe the 1) current state of conductors’ awareness and knowledge of sound intensity levels, 2) current attitudes of conductors toward learning and sharing knowledge of sound intensity levels, and 3) current teaching practices of conductors in regard to equipment usage (e.g. sound level meter, noise dosimeter, hearing protection devices) relating to sound measurement and exposure. Findings indicate 80.2% of conductors (N = 162, 66% employed by NASM-accredited institutions) agree that sounds generated during ensemble-based instructional activities (EBIAs) in college-level schools of music are capable of harming human hearing, but 24.1% “do not know” if EBIAs they conduct ever exceed sound intensity levels capable of harming human hearing, 54.9% do not know “what services or resources” their home institutions offer/refer to students, 93% are never using a noise dosimeter, 40% have never had an audiology exam, and 70% have never used hearing protection during an EBIA. Conductors have a strong openness to change current teaching practices and inform themselves about hearing health, but few are personally informing and educating their students during the EBIA. The study serves to assist conductors and foster a new dialogue among their students, colleagues, staff, and administrators to revise current curriculum, explore sound measurement technologies, and evaluate current hearing health and safety issues inherent in the practice, performance, and teaching of sound intensity levels generated during EBIAs in college-level schools of music. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149559/
From Ritual to Art in the Puritan Music of Colonial New England: the Anthems of William Billings
The manner in which Billings’s music contrasts with the Puritan musical ideal clearly demonstrates his role in the transition from ritual to art in the music of eighteenth-century New England. The tenets of Puritan worship included the restriction that music should serve primarily as a form of communal prayer for the congregation and in a secondary capacity to assist in biblical instruction. Billings’s stylistic independence from Puritan orthodoxy began with a differing ideology concerning the purpose of music: whereas Calvin believed music merely provided a means for the communal deliverance of biblical text, Billings recognized music for its inherent aesthetic worth. Billings’s shift away from the Puritan musical heritage occurred simultaneously with considerable change in New England in the last three decades of the eighteenth century. A number of Billings’s works depict the events of the Revolutionary War, frequently adapting scriptural texts for nationalistic purposes. The composition of occasional works to commemorate religious and civic events reflects both the increase in society’s approval of choral music beyond its nominal use in worship, both in singing schools and in choirs. With his newfound independence from Puritan ritual, Billings seems to have declared himself one of the United States of America’s first musical artists. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149583/
Music of the Spheres: Astronomy and Shamanism in the Music of Urmas Sisask
In 1619, Johannes Kepler published his magnum opus Harmonices mundi in which the astronomer derived distinct pitches and scales for each known planet in the solar system from calculations of various aspects of their orbital motions. This was the first theoretical realization of the ancient tradition of musica universalis (also called musica mundana), or music of the celestial bodies. It was not until the Estonian composer Urmas Sisask (b. 1960) began his compositional career by deriving his own “planetary scale,” however, that the theoretical musica universalis came into audible existence. Sisask’s work represents a distinctive musical voice among today’s choral composers, and although he is steadily gaining attention for his unique compositional style, only limited information exists about the specifics of his background, his interest in astronomy and shamanism, and the subsequent influence these interests have had on his choral music. At once traditional and modern, he bridges the gap between ancient Estonian folk song and the present. Through an application of exotic techniques including extreme repetition, ritualistically driving rhythms and sudden changes in timbre and texture; coupled with his own peculiarly crafted “planetary scale,” Urmas Sisask has created a completely unique body of work which is examined in this study by looking at representative works from his choral oeuvre including Gloria Patri…24 hymns for mixed choir, Magnificat, Ave Sol, and Benedictio. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149587/
Performing the “Classical”: the Gurukula System in Karnatic Music Society
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. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149599/
The Effect of Three Compositional Structures on the Compositional and Instructional Self-efficacy of Pre-service Music Teachers
The purpose of this study was two-fold: 1) to compare the effects of three different composition tasks with varying degrees of structure on pre-service music teachers’ creative self-efficacy as composers and their instructional self-efficacy as pedagogues of composition; and 2) to describe through pre-service music teachers’ talk perceptions of composition and their experiences completing the three composition tasks. Participants (N = 29) were music education majors from three different sized universities in the northern-central region of the United States. At the beginning of the study, the participants answered a researcher-design self-efficacy questionnaire that measured (a) their self-efficacy as composers and (b) their self-efficacy as teachers of composition. Next, they composed three compositions of various task structures (unstructured, poem, and rhythm). Immediately after completing each task they again completed the self-efficacy questionnaire. Statistically significant mean differences between the pre-task administration of the measuring instrument and all three composition tasks were found for the pre-service teachers’ compositional self-efficacy. Statistically significant mean differences were also found between the unstructured task and the rhythm task, but not between the rhythm and poem tasks or the unstructured and poem tasks. For the pre-service teachers’ self-efficacy as pedagogues of composition question, the results were also statistically significant between the pre-task administration of the measuring instrument and all three composition tasks. Statistically significant mean differences were also found between the unstructured task and the rhythm task as well as the poem and rhythm tasks, but not between the unstructured and poem tasks. Additional data were gathered through semi-structured one-on-one interviews. Through their talk the pre-service music teachers commented that they enjoyed the overall composition process. This experience also seemed to challenge the participants’ assumptions about composition and appeared to make creative experiences more tenable and relevant to their future classroom experiences. The results of this study suggest that incorporating composition activities regardless of structure within a music teacher’s pre-service training might impact their self-efficacy beliefs not only as composers, but also as pedagogues of composition. This study suggested that teacher educators might want to consider using a rhythmic structure as the first task to help provide an initial framework to guide and initiate their composition. Pre-service teachers engaged in similar compositional activities might also gain further insights about what it means to be a composer and into the pedagogy of composition. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149601/
Goethe Settings By Johann Friedrich Reichardt and Carl Friedrich Zelter: Text, Music and Performance Possibilities
The connection between text, music, and performance in the lieder of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries is an integral aspect to fully comprehending the style and performance of the genre. It is also essential in order to understand the full development of the lied in its totality. The era represented a transitional period in musical development, influenced by Enlightenment values of elegance, good taste, simplicity, and naturalness which sought to eradicate the overly decorative “excesses” of the high-Baroque. In this study, emphasis is placed upon the unique development of the lied in the northern German regions by the composers Johann Friedrich Reichardt and Carl Friedrich Zelter and their musical settings of the lyric poetry of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. The study also addresses the overall development of the genre as it progressed from the Baroque through Classicism/Neo-Classicism, Sturm und Drang, and into Romanticism exploring the musical settings and performance possibilities both then and now in the context of the various treatises and correspondence between the composers and poet. It seeks to effectively address the notion that these early songs were composed and performed by those versed in the ideal of music being an improvisatory/dramatic vehicle for expressing emotion and textual meaning. In opera, and to a lesser extent other vocal idioms, musico-dramatic excesses occurred in the late Baroque and the cult of the singer reigned. However, the reforms which led to the new aesthetic of naturalness did not suddenly end this improvisatory vocal performance practice. The musical complexity of the lied was gaining in prominence but not yet to the detriment of the priority of the poetic text and its effective rendering. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149641/
Lind, James Meyer the Trumpet Concertos of Anthony Plog: a Performer’s Guide
Anthony Plog (b. 1947) has contributed several notable works for brass instruments. He is known for writing extremely technically challenging works that contain angular melodies, fast rhythms and a large degree of chromaticism. Though his music is difficult, it also conveys intense emotions. His music for trumpet, specifically Concerto no. 1 for Trumpet, Brass Ensemble and Percussion and Concerto no. 2 for Trumpet and Orchestra, represents a zenith in his compositional development. This dissertation examines Concerto no. 1 and Concerto no. 2 from a performer’s perspective to better understand the stylistic characteristics and challenges encountered in his music. Each concerto is examined in terms of rhythmic structure, intervallic structure, thematic material, motivic material and form. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149631/
Jacques Ibert: an Analytical Study of Three Movements From Histoires
Although many biographical studies are available on Jacques Ibert, few contain significant analytical commentary. In this study I examine three movements from Ibert’s Histoires for piano which was composed between 1920 and 1921 and was premiered in 1923. The three movements are “La menuese de tortues d’or,” “Le petit âne blanc,” and “La marchande d’eau fraîche.” I primarily use Schenkerian analysis to identify characteristics of Ibert’s compositional language. Significant aspects of impressionism and Debussian influence are also identified as related elements to my analysis. Many expected elements of Schenkerian theory are absent in Histoires. The conclusions of this study are consistent with those of other analysts who apply Schenkerian methodology to impressionist music such as Richard Parks, Adele Katz, Felix Salzer, and Edward Laufer. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149681/
The Natural Learning Process and Its Implications for Trombone Pedagogy
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This thesis considers the natural learning process as defined by Timothy Gallwey and Daniel Kohut. This learning theory is examined and applied to trombone pedagogy while also considering physiological attributes to trombone performance. a brief synopsis of the history and lineage of the trombone is considered in order to understand the current setting of the trombone medium. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115144/
Analysis of Roger-ducasse’s Pastorale Pour Orgue
Pastorale pour Orgue (1909) is Jean Jules Aimable Roger-Ducasse’s only solo organ composition, which demonstrates skillful use of organ colors and demands a virtuoso technique for performance. Writing Pastorale in 1909, Roger-Ducasse synthesized compositional styles and techniques of two very different compositional approaches – impressionism and classicism. This study examines the stylistic characteristics of Pastorale by Roger-Ducasse as examples of both of these influences. the synthesis in Pastorale is primarily evident in the combination of classical forms and generic references with impressionist harmony and color. Thus, examining these musical elements provides hitherto unexplored insights into Pastorale as a master solo organ work of the early twentieth century. the dissertation is divided into four chapters. the first chapter presents the purpose, the significance, and the state of research of the piece. in the second chapter, I examine the traits of classicism through genre, form, thematic variation and other classicist elements of the composition. the third chapter presents the traits of impressionism including harmonic parallelism, extended chords, pedal points, ostinatos, and whole-tone scales. in the fourth chapter, I summarize the study and make a suggestion for further research of the piece. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115106/
Sun (1966): Eight Poems in One Movement for Solo Voice and Orchestra By Ned Rorem: Background, Analysis, and Performance Guide
The purpose of the document is to present Ned Rorem’s Sun (1966): Eight Poems in One Movement for Solo Voice and Orchestra. the eight songs are “To the Sun,” “Sun of the Sleepless,” “Dawn,” “Day,” “Catafalque,” “Full Many a Glorious Morning,” “Sundown Lights,” and “From What Can I Tell My Bones?” the document is divided into four main chapters: 1) Background; 2) Poet and Poem Background; 3) Musical Analysis; 4) Performance Guide. Chapter 1 contains biographical information on Ned Rorem, and basic information of the work, Sun. Here, a relationship between the eight songs is presented. Chapter 2 discusses biography of poet and background of the poem. the poetry is examined to determine the theme and to identify imagery, and metaphor. Chapter 3 offers detailed musical analysis for each of the eight songs and interludes. Chapter 4 provides performance guide which offers assistance in forming personal interpretation and brief specifies to singers who wish to perform this work. Appendix a includes tonality, difficulty, tempo, form, theme, range, and orchestration of each song and interlude. This study serves as a reference guide for performers of Sun. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115104/
Establishing Editorial Principles to Create a Performance Edition of Selections From Appunti Op 210 By Mario Castelnuovo-tedesco
This paper examined editorial methods used in producing published versions of the music of Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco (1895-1968). From this examination, I established some editorial principles to create a performance edition of five movements from book two of Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s Appunti op. 210. This paper includes a discussion of the sources and methods used in establishing editorial criteria. at the request of the Milanese guitarist Ruggero Chiesa (1933-1993), Castelnuovo-Tedesco set out to create a collection of didactic pieces for young guitarists. the pieces were to be collaboratively edited and fingered by Chiesa, and then given final approval by the composer. Unfortunately, the composer died before finishing the work. the pieces and sketches that survive exist in four volumes published by the Italian house, Suvini Zerboni, containing the pieces that Chiesa edited with the approval of Castelnuovo-Tedesco. the published edition also includes unedited pieces that did not undergo the collaborative process. with the goal of maintaining an unadulterated portrayal of the composer’s intentions, Chiesa presented these pieces as they appear in the manuscript. Much of the music is unidiomatic and either impossible or highly impractical to play. My study established some editorial principles for use in creating a performance edition of this work. the edition includes my engraving of the original unedited manuscript as well as ossia measures containing solutions to performance problems. the suggested solutions balance the perception of the composer’s intentions, established editorial practices, and idiomatic concerns to creating a playable edition. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115108/
The Choral Music of Ola Gjeilo: a New Vision of the Choral Instrument in the 21St Century
The choral music of Norwegian composer Ola Gjeilo (pronounced “yay-loh”) is gaining international acclaim and is widely performed and commissioned by prominent high school, university, and professional choirs. It represents a philosophical approach and vision of the choral instrument for which the conductor must have a clear understanding in order to prepare a meaningful performance. in particular, his music merges diverse musical influences, which results in a product of unique character among choral compositions in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Gjeilo draws inspiration from a text but then uses its sonic qualities (the sounds of vowels and consonants) to create an atmosphere of sound instead of following the traditions in choral and vocal music of using musical mechanisms (melody, rhythm, and harmony) to reinforce the text poetically. This study provides an overview of Gjeilo’s background, in Chapter 1, and discusses its influence on his compositional philosophy. Chapter 2 contains musical examples from selected works, which are used to illuminate unique attributes found in Gjeilo’s music. Chapter 3 presents important implications to consider aiding choral conductors in their preparation of future performances of Gjeilo’s music. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115152/
The Collective Pedagogy Utilized By the Trombone Instructors at the Rotterdam Conservatory of the Netherlands
The Collective Pedagogy Utilized by the Trombone Instructors at the Rotterdam Conservatory of the Netherlands offers a comprehensive study of the collaboration between the various instructors of the trombone studio within the Rotterdam Conservatory and their pedagogical approach to curriculum, lesson structure, grading process, student body, and social environment. the Rotterdam Conservatory has produced some of the finest trombonists in the global music community. Alumni from the conservatory consistently win positions in professional ensembles, succeed in national and international competitions, and are often featured artists at international music festivals. the success of their alumni warrants closer scrutiny of the pedagogical approach utilized by the faculty of the conservatory. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115177/
Go-hyang (Ancestral Home) By David Burge: a Performer’s Guide to Integrating Korean Musical and Cultural Aspects
David Burge (b. 1930) composed the work Go-Hyang (1994) inspired by his impressions of Korea. the purpose of this study is to provide a performance guide particularly for the benefit of non- Korean pianists. Each of the six pieces of Go-Hyang contains Korean musical and/or cultural references. This document details these aspects, obviously stated or implied through the work. Investigation into distinct characteristics and Korean elements of each of the six movements will involve sources from multiple fields. Interviews with both the composer and the pianist Young-Hae Han for whom the work was written answer many questions about performance issues. Once the Korean reference is examined, it will be related to performance consideration of each movement, in order. the result of this examination will provide the performer not only with beneficial information to facilitate the performance but also with some cultural background to enrich the interpretation of the work. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115109/
The Chopin Etudes: a Study Guide for Teaching and Learning Opus 10 and Opus 25
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The etudes of Chopin are masterworks of the piano literature and are designed to go beyond mere technical exercises; moreover, each etude represents not only a technical study but also has a distinct musical character. Alarmingly, the current trend seems to be to assign the Chopin etudes at an increasingly young age to students who are not yet equipped either technically or musically to handle them. As Chopin’s pupil, Carl Mikuli, commented in the preface to his Chopin edition, the etudes were meant for “more advanced students.” If Chopin had intended his etudes for students at an intermediate level, he would have assigned them to most of his students; however, only a limited number of students had his permission to work on their master’s etudes. As a teacher, I have always felt the need to devise a systematic teaching plan to guide students to handle the challenges of these pieces both physically and musically. This study examines the repertoire which might help prepare a student to learn the etudes without overstraining his/her muscular and mental ability. Rooted in Chopin’s teaching and his recommendation of the pieces to learn before tackling the etudes themselves, this pedagogical study guide intends to help students and teachers to work progressively towards the study of these works. While pinpointing some exercises and simple pieces to assign to a student in preparation for studying the individual etudes, helpful works of later composers are also liberally incorporated, as well as some suggestions for practicing the etudes themselves. Finally, I shall provide my own “re-ordering” of the etudes, with a progressive degree of difficulty, as an additional aid to a young pianist who may eventually want to learn the entire opus 10 and opus 25. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115039/
Overview and Introduction to the Organ Music of Alsatian-american Composer René Louis Becker (1882-1956)
This dissertation provides the first biographical overview and annotated catalog of the organ music of Alsatian-American organist and composer René Louis Becker. Born and educated in Strasbourg, Alsace, Becker emigrated to the United States in 1904 and remained active as a composer and church musician for the next 50 years. in addition to providing sources for his biographical information, documentation of the specific organs with which Becker was professionally associated is included for the purpose of evaluating possible dates of composition of his undated organ works as well as for consideration of organ registrations when performing his works. Primary sources include newspaper clippings, personal correspondence, family scrapbooks, organ archives, and both published and unpublished manuscripts. Study of these manuscripts, including rediscovery of more than fifty works of Becker’s which were previously published in the early 1900s, present an opportunity to introduce a large new body of sophisticated repertoire from a distinguished and accomplished musician to the field of organ music. Becker composed more than 180 individual works for the organ, over half of which remain in manuscript and which were completely unknown since even before his death in 1956. Becker’s complete known oeuvre for organ includes 34 marches, 15 toccatas, three published large-scale sonatas as well as numerous works styled as preludes, postludes, finales, chansons, fantasies, fugues, and multiple small-scale compositions. After a brief biography and an overview of Becker’s compositional style and complete extant organ works, an introduction to his largest-scale work for the organ, the five-movement First Sonata in G, op. 40, is given. This is followed by an illustration of the overt stylistic influences present in the first two movements of that sonata with extensive musical examples, serving to establish Becker as one of the inheritors of the romantic tradition of the large-scale organ sonata and as a 20th century composer of note. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115165/
Uniting Commedia Dell’arte Traditions with the Spieltenor Repertoire
Sixteenth century commedia dell’arte actors relied on gaudy costumes, physical humor and improvisation to entertain audiences. the Spieltenor in the modern operatic repertoire has a similar comedic role. Would today’s Spieltenor benefit from consulting the commedia dell’arte’s traditions? to answer this question, I examine the commedia dell’arte’s history, stock characters and performance traditions of early troupes. the Spieltenor is discussed in terms of vocal pedagogy and the fach system. I reference critical studies of the commedia dell’arte, sources on improvisatory acting, articles on theatrical masks and costuming, the commedia dell’arte as depicted by visual artists, commedia dell’arte techniques of movement, stances and postures. in addition, I cite vocal pedagogy articles, operatic repertoire and sources on the fach system. My findings suggest that a valid relationship exists between the commedia dell’arte stock characters and the Spieltenor roles in the operatic repertoire. I present five case studies, pairing five stock characters with five Spieltenor roles. Suggestions are provided to enhance the visual, physical and dramatic elements of each role’s performance. I conclude that linking a commedia dell’arte stock character to any Spieltenor role on the basis of shared traits offers an untapped resource to create distinctive characterizations based on theatrical traditions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115173/
Ocean of Forms: for Soprano and Computer
Ocean of Forms is a cycle of five songs for solo soprano voice and electronic/computer music accompaniment on poems by noted Bengali poet, musician, philosopher, and author Rabindranath Tagore. This work approaches the song cycle as a vehicle for expressing and highlighting the poet's words. Word and syllabic stress, text painting, melodic development, and formal structure all function in relation to the text and its meaning. the replacement of the traditional piano accompaniment with electronic accompaniment provides further possibilities for new timbral structures and transformations, expressive microtonal intonation, algorithmic and aleatoric formal structures, acousmatic and spatialized sound, and a broad sonic palette. This work strives to provide a more fully developed expression of the text as afforded by these expanded musical means. the critical essay primarily explores the interaction between text and music in the work. the first chapter explores the historical precedents for the genre of the song cycle and other texted music as well as specific influences on the work. the following chapters explore the connections between the text and the vocal line and electronic/computer music, respectively. the final chapter deals with the formal structure of the work, especially the justly-tuned harmonic scheme and its relation to the text. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115141/
Reviewing Commercial Music Resources: a Guide for Aspiring Singers and Vocal Professionals
Contemporary commercial music is a broad label used to describe the styles of popular music including pop, rock, rhythm and blues, jazz, hip-hop, country and heavy metal. the vocal ability required for each of these genres varies greatly but may require the use of screaming, belting, utilizing vocal fry and growling or singing with a breathy or dark tone. Singers who wish to perform in these genres may need assistance with vocal technique to assure the longevity and the quality of their singing. Due to the rise in popularity and the accessibility of contemporary commercial music (CCM), commercial pedagogical guides and self-study manuals are abundantly available for purchase. Aspiring singers are searching for appropriate training for this genre without having an awareness of how the voice works and how to maintain good vocal hygiene. Those who seek out private instruction are often frustrated when traditional classical training techniques are offered, rather than techniques utilizing CCM styles. Because CCM pedagogy is relatively new and few pedagogues in this specialized field are well known, the self-taught singer is responsible for finding a reliable study source. Many vocal instructors and choral directors are interested in familiarizing themselves with new stylistic techniques to enhance the performance of their students while maintaining vocal health. By reviewing popular vocal method books and techniques, insight may be given to assist a singer or vocal teacher in selecting resources of CCM styles. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115091/
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