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 Degree Discipline: Musicology
The Sounds of the Dystopian Future:  Music for Science Fiction Films of the New Hollywood Era, 1966-1976

The Sounds of the Dystopian Future: Music for Science Fiction Films of the New Hollywood Era, 1966-1976

Date: May 2009
Creator: McGinney, William Lawrence
Description: From 1966 to1976, science fiction films tended to depict civilizations of the future that had become intrinsically antagonistic to their inhabitants as a result of some internal or external cataclysm. This dystopian turn in science fiction films, following a similar move in science fiction literature, reflected concerns about social and ecological changes occurring during the late 1960s and early 1970s and their future implications. In these films, "dystopian" conditions are indicated as such by music incorporating distinctly modernist sounds and techniques reminiscent of twentieth-century concert works that abandon the common practice. In contrast, music associated with the protagonists is generally more accessible, often using common practice harmonies and traditional instrumentation. These films appeared during a period referred to as the "New Hollywood," which saw younger American filmmakers responding to developments in European cinema, notably the French New Wave. New Hollywood filmmakers treated their films as cinematic "statements" reflecting the filmmaker's artistic vision. Often, this encouraged an idiosyncratic use of music to enhance the perceived artistic nature of their films. This study examines the scores of ten science fiction films produced between 1966 and 1976: Fahrenheit 451, Planet of the Apes, 2001: A Space Odyssey, THX-1138, A Clockwork Orange, Silent Running, ...
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Caught Between Jazz and Pop: The Contested Origins, Criticism, Performance Practice, and Reception of Smooth Jazz.

Caught Between Jazz and Pop: The Contested Origins, Criticism, Performance Practice, and Reception of Smooth Jazz.

Date: December 2008
Creator: West, Aaron J.
Description: In Caught Between Jazz and Pop, I challenge the prevalent marginalization and malignment of smooth jazz in the standard jazz narrative. Furthermore, I question the assumption that smooth jazz is an unfortunate and unwelcomed evolutionary outcome of the jazz-fusion era. Instead, I argue that smooth jazz is a long-lived musical style that merits multi-disciplinary analyses of its origins, critical dialogues, performance practice, and reception. Chapter 1 begins with an examination of current misconceptions about the origins of smooth jazz. In many jazz histories, the origins of smooth jazz are defined as a product of the jazz-fusion era. I suggest that smooth jazz is a distinct jazz style that is not a direct outgrowth of any mainstream jazz style, but a hybrid of various popular and jazz styles. Chapters 2 through 4 contain eight case studies examining the performers of crossover jazz and smooth jazz. These performers have conceived and maintained distinct communicative connections between themselves and their audiences. In the following chapter, the unfair treatment of popular jazz styles is examined. Many early and influential jazz critics sought to elevate jazz to the status of art music by discrediting popular jazz styles. These critics used specific criteria and emphasized notions ...
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Singing Songs of Social Significance: Children's Music and Leftist Pedagogy in 1930s America

Singing Songs of Social Significance: Children's Music and Leftist Pedagogy in 1930s America

Date: December 2008
Creator: Haas, Benjamin D.
Description: In their shared goal of communicating left-wing principles to children through music, Marc Blitzstein's Worker's Kids of the World (1935), Aaron Copland's The Second Hurricane (1937), and Alex North's The Hither and Thither of Danny Dither (1941) exhibit a fundamental unity of purpose that binds them both to each other and to the extensive leftist pedagogical efforts of their time. By observing the parallel relationship among these three children's works and contemporary youth organizations, summer camps, and children's literature, their cultural objectives and stylistic idiosyncrasies emerge as expressions of a continuously evolving educational tradition. Whereas Worker's Kids comes out of the revolutionary Communist aesthetics of the Composers' Collective and the militant activism of The Young Pioneers, The Second Hurricane and Danny Dither reflect the increasingly accommodating educational efforts of the American Popular Front.
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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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The "Gypsy" style as extramusical reference: A historical and stylistic reassessment of Liszt's Book I "Swiss" of Années de pèlerinage.

The "Gypsy" style as extramusical reference: A historical and stylistic reassessment of Liszt's Book I "Swiss" of Années de pèlerinage.

Date: May 2008
Creator: Tan, Sok-Hoon
Description: This study examines Liszt's use of the style hongrois in his Swiss book of Années de pèlerinage to reference certain sentiments he had experienced. The event that brought Liszt to Switzerland is discussed in Chapter 1 in order to establish an understanding of the personal difficulties facing Liszt during the period when the Swiss book took shape. Based on Jonathan Bellman's research of the style hongrois, Chapter 2 examines the Swiss pieces that exhibit musical gestures characteristic of this style. Bellman also introduced a second, metaphoric meaning of the style hongrois, which is discussed in Chapter 3 along with Liszt's accounts from his book Des Bohémien as well as the literary quotations that are included in the Swiss book. Together, the biographical facts, the accounts from Des Bohémien, and the literary quotations show that Liszt was using the style hongrois to substantiate the autobiographical significance of the Swiss book.
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Expanded Perceptions of Identity in Benjamin Britten's Nocturne, Op. 60

Expanded Perceptions of Identity in Benjamin Britten's Nocturne, Op. 60

Date: May 2008
Creator: Perkins, Anna Grace
Description: A concentrated reading of Benjamin Britten's Nocturne through details of the composer's biography can lead to new perspectives on the composer's identity. The method employed broadens current understandings of Britten's personality and its relationship to the music. After creating a context for this kind of work within Britten scholarship, each chapter explores a specific aspect of Britten's identity through the individual songs of the Nocturne. Chapter 2 focuses on how Britten used genres in a pastoral style to create his own British identity. Chapter 3 concentrates on the complex relationship between Britten's homosexuality and his pacifism. Chapter 4 aims to achieve a deeper understanding of Britten's idealization of innocence. The various aspects of Britten's personality are related to one another in the Conclusion.
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Yoon-Seong Cho's Jazz Korea: A Cross-cultural Musical Excursion

Yoon-Seong Cho's Jazz Korea: A Cross-cultural Musical Excursion

Date: May 2008
Creator: Joo, Hwajoon
Description: This thesis examines Yoon-Seong Cho's critically acclaimed recording Jazz Korea, in which Cho unites Korean folk music and American jazz into a single form of expression. By reinterpreting Korean folk music through jazz, Cho stimulated interest in the Korean jazz scene and a renewed interest in Korean traditional folk songs. The goal of the thesis, the first musicological essay about Yoon-Seong Cho, is to understand how Cho's diasporic experiences affected his music by leading to a process of self-discovery that allowed Cho to interpret his own identity. Through musical analysis, the study proposes a cultural interpretation of two of Cho's pieces that have achieved popularity not only among Koreans but also internationally: "Arirang" and Han-O-Baek-Nyun.
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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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Still life in black and white: An intertextual interpretation of William Grant Still's "symphonic trilogy."

Still life in black and white: An intertextual interpretation of William Grant Still's "symphonic trilogy."

Access: Use of this item is restricted to the UNT Community.
Date: August 2005
Creator: Lamb, Earnest
Description: William Grant Still's musical achievements are legion. Because he was the first African American to break the color line in America's concert halls, Still earned the sobriquet "Dean of Negro Composers." Paradoxically, Still's reception suffers from this list of "firsts." The unintended consequence of cataloging his achievements venerates his position as an iconoclast while detracting critical attention from his music. Conversely, if we ignore the social context in which Still produced his music, we risk misinterpreting his compositional choices or trivializing the significance of his accomplishments prior to the Civil Rights Movement in America. Still's so-called symphonic trilogy-Africa, Symphony No. 1 ("Afro-American"), and Symphony No. 2 ("Song of a New Race")-is the subject of an intertextual analysis that demonstrates how extra-musical concerns, such as race, and musical elements can be brought into alignment. Chapter one discusses black music scholarship in general and Still scholarship in particular by tracing the development of black music historiography. The second chapter explores one of the various modes of inquiry used to study black music-intertextuality. The context for Still's self-titled racial and universal periods is the subject of chapter three. For the first time, arguments from both sides of the racial divide are reconsidered in ...
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Reading Handel: A Textual and Musical Analysis of Handel's Acis and Galatea (1708, 1718)

Reading Handel: A Textual and Musical Analysis of Handel's Acis and Galatea (1708, 1718)

Access: Use of this item is restricted to the UNT Community.
Date: August 2005
Creator: Chang, Young-Shim
Description: The purpose of this dissertation is two-fold: one is to analyze the narratives of Acis and Galatea written by Ovid, and the two libretti by Handel's librettists including Nicola Giuvo (1708) and John Gay (1718) with John Hughes and Alexander Pope; the other is to correlate this textual analysis within the musical languages. A 1732 pastiche version is excluded because its bilingual texts are not suitable for the study of relationships between meaning and words. For this purpose, the study uses the structural theory- -mainly that of Gérard Genette--as a theoretical framework for the analysis of the texts. Narrative analysis of Acis and Galatea proves that the creative process of writing the libretto is a product of a conscious acknowledgement of its structure by composer and librettists. They put the major events of the story into recitative and ensemble. By examining the texts of both Handel's work, I explore several structural layers from the libretti: the change of the characterization to accommodate a specific occasion and the composer's response to contemporary English demand for pastoral drama with parodistic elements, alluding to the low and high class of society. Further, Polyphemus is examined in terms of relationships with culture corresponding to ...
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