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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Department: College of Music
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
“Sunken Monadnock”: a Composition for Flute, Clarinet, Bassoon, Violin, Violoncello, Electric Guitar, Piano, Percussion, Three Female Vocalists, and Computer

“Sunken Monadnock”: a Composition for Flute, Clarinet, Bassoon, Violin, Violoncello, Electric Guitar, Piano, Percussion, Three Female Vocalists, and Computer

Date: December 2013
Creator: Harris, Joshua Kimball
Description: Sunken Monadnock is a scripted combination of three modular musical surfaces. The word “surface” is borrowed from Morton Feldman, who compared the aural surface of music to the canvases of the action painters of the American Abstract Expressionists, and contrasted it with the work’s subject, or organizational structure. Composers’ transition toward a focus on surface through indeterminate compositional techniques, according to Feldman, parallels the development of modernist abstract art. “Sunken Monadnock: Composing with Visual Metaphors” is a companion critical essay that takes the surface/subject metaphor as a starting point for analyzing Sunken Monadnock.Other visual metaphors that inspired Sunken Monadnock, and are discussed in the essay, include Shakir Hassan Al Said’s mystical semiotics, Jasper Johns’s crosshatch prints, and Wassily Kandinsky’s theory of abstraction. The circle and spiral, especially, play influential roles in Sunken Monadnock as reflected by musical applications of repetition, rotation, compression/rarefaction, and endlessness. The void in the circle’s center also comes into play. The nature of the work’s formal counterpoint requires an innovative approach to the score, which consists of five sections, each of which reflects a different approach to the aural surface (i.e., to the traversal of time). The two outer sections are traditionally scored, but the three ...
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An Examination of Innovations in Alexander Scriabin’s Late Etudes for Piano

An Examination of Innovations in Alexander Scriabin’s Late Etudes for Piano

Date: December 2013
Creator: Lee, Kuo-Ying
Description: Alexander Scriabin (1872-1915) stands as one of the most unconventional twentieth-century Russian composers, particularly with respect to his piano works. The overwhelming majority of Scriabin's compositions—sixty-seven of his seventy-four published works—were written for solo piano. His etudes from 1905 forward are revolutionary, especially compared with his earlier Chopinesque style. Among Scriabin’s twenty-six etudes, his Op.49, No. 1 (1905), Op.56, No. 4 (1908) and the last three etudes of Op.65 (1912) date from his last period of composition. In the Op.49 etude, Scriabin started to abandon traditional tonality. He omitted the key signature altogether in the Op.56 etude. The final three etudes of Op.65 feature constant dissonances on ninths, sevenths and fifths. Alexander Scriabin’s last five etudes represent the culmination of his compositional development and innovations at the piano. Several factors coalesce in these etudes, including unusual harmony, bichords, non-tonal hierarchy, and structural symmetry. Most of these factors derive in some fashion from Scriabin’s increasing reliance upon the so-called “mystic chord” in his late works. This study will illustrate how Scriabin explored new sonorous and aesthetic ideas in his late etudes by means of these innovations.
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Performer’s Guide to the Execution and Application of Karen Tuttle’s Coordination, As Applied to Ernest Bloch’s Suite Hébraïque

Performer’s Guide to the Execution and Application of Karen Tuttle’s Coordination, As Applied to Ernest Bloch’s Suite Hébraïque

Date: December 2013
Creator: Sander, Amber
Description: Legendary violist and pedagogue Karen Tuttle developed a new approach to playing the viola known as Coordination. Coordination consists of a deep emotional connection to music, as well as highly specific motions of the body. This document details the execution of the physical motions of Coordination, through written descriptions and multimedia examples. A detailed discussion of the application of the motions is presented, using notated examples from Ernest Bloch’s Suite Hébraïque.
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An Instructional Approach to Introducing Twentieth-century Piano Music to Piano Students From Beginning to Advanced Levels: a Graded Repertoire for Mastering the Challenges Posed by Logan Skelton’s Civil War Variations

An Instructional Approach to Introducing Twentieth-century Piano Music to Piano Students From Beginning to Advanced Levels: a Graded Repertoire for Mastering the Challenges Posed by Logan Skelton’s Civil War Variations

Date: December 2013
Creator: Kim, Dajeong
Description: Beginning and intermediate piano students typically study the repertoire of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. This pedagogical approach leaves them underprepared to approach compositions written since the latter part of the twentieth-century which are significantly different in terms of harmony, rhythm, meter, and compositional procedure. Therefore, a step-by-step method is necessary to prepare a student for the challenges of learning twentieth and twenty-first century piano music. Civil War Variations (1988), by Logan Skelton, is an excellent example of a piece that presents a number of challenges characteristically found in late twentieth-century piano music. The twenty-five variations that comprise the work incorporate a series of twentieth-century musical techniques, namely complex rhythms, extreme dissonance, frequent metric changes, dissonant counterpoint, the inclusion of blues scales and rhythms, and new notations. The purpose of this study is to identify the technical, musical, structural and notational challenges posed by a work such as Logan Skelton’s Civil War Variations; examination of this piece will lead to suggestions regarding repertoire that a teacher may assign to beginning, intermediate, and advanced students in order to prepare them logically and in a step-by-step fashion to cope with and meet the challenges posed by this and other compositions having similar ...
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Teacher Communication in Title I Elementary Music Classrooms: Perceptions of Elementary Music Classroom Teachers

Teacher Communication in Title I Elementary Music Classrooms: Perceptions of Elementary Music Classroom Teachers

Date: December 2013
Creator: Mason, Lindsey Lea
Description: The increasing cultural diversity in the United States has brought not only richness, but also complex challenges, to various segments of American society, particularly with regard to public schools. As the student population continues to diversify while teacher population remains predominately White, female, and middle class, teacher awareness in the classroom might be an integral piece to assist students marginalized by stereotypes in feeling more empowered in the school community. Through qualitative data collection and analysis, and framed by Basil Bernstein’s language code theory, this study explored teachers’ perceptions of how classroom interactions, in light of differences in communication, might impact students of different socio-economic backgrounds from the teacher. The findings of this study indicated that the participants expressed a desire to connect with all of their students, regardless of their background. They also discussed challenges that made relationships difficult, such as feelings of disconnect from their Title I students and their families based on differences in home life and background. This dissonance was often difficult for the participants to reconcile due to pressures and difficulties in their teaching situations, such as the large number of students and the scheduling of classes, curricular pressures, and other district expectations such as ...
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The Voice of the Composer: Theory and Practice in the Works of Pietro Pontio

The Voice of the Composer: Theory and Practice in the Works of Pietro Pontio

Date: December 1989
Creator: Murray, Russell Eugene
Description: The life, music, and theoretical writings of Pietro Pontio (1532-1596) yield considerable insight into questions of theory and practice in the late sixteenth century. The dissertation places Pontio within his musical and cultural milieu, and assesses his role as both theorist and composer. Volume Two presents an annotated works list for Pontio's compositions, transcriptions of archival documents used in the study, and transcriptions of representative musical compositions.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
The Voice of the Composer: Theory and Practice in the Works of Pietro Pontio

The Voice of the Composer: Theory and Practice in the Works of Pietro Pontio

Date: December 1989
Creator: Murray, Russell Eugene
Description: The life, music, and theoretical writings of Pietro Pontio (1532-1596) yield considerable insight into questions of theory and practice in the late sixteenth century. The dissertation places Pontio within his musical and cultural milieu, and assesses his role as both theorist and composer. Volume Two presents an annotated works list for Pontio's compositions, transcriptions of archival documents used in the study, and transcriptions of representative musical compositions.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Repetition and Difference: Parodic Narration in Kander and Ebb's "The Scottsboro Boys"

Repetition and Difference: Parodic Narration in Kander and Ebb's "The Scottsboro Boys"

Date: August 2013
Creator: Wolski, Kristin Anne
Description: The American musical team John Kander and Fred Ebb created many celebrated works, yet musicologists have carried out little research on those works. This study examines the role of music in the parodic narration of Kander and Ebb's final collaboration, The Scottsboro Boys. Kander and Ebb use minstrelsy to tell the story of the historic Scottsboro Boys trials with actors portraying the Scottsboro Boys as minstrels; at the same time, they employ a number of devices to subvert minstrelsy stereotypes and thereby comment on racism. Drawing on African American literary theory, sociolinguistics, and Bakhtin's dialogism, this study illuminates how Signifyin(g), a rhetorical tradition used to encode messages in some African American communities, is the primary way the actors playing the Scottsboro Boys subvert through minstrelsy. This study not only contributes to the discussion of Signifyin(g) in African American musicals and theatre as a tool of subversion, but also provides an example of non-African American creators—Kander and Ebb—using Signifyin(g) devices. They use these in the music and the book; in particular, Kander and Ebb do some Signifyin(g) on Stephen Foster's plantation melodies.
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A Performance Guide to Arvo Pärt's Concerto Piccolo Über B-A-C-H for Trumpet, Strings, Harpsichord, and Piano

A Performance Guide to Arvo Pärt's Concerto Piccolo Über B-A-C-H for Trumpet, Strings, Harpsichord, and Piano

Date: August 2013
Creator: Bishop, James Martin
Description: Arvo Pärt's Concerto Piccolo über B-A-C-H for trumpet, strings, harpsichord, and piano is a brief yet challenging work in the trumpet repertoire. A carefully articulated performance guide is necessary to aid trumpeters in overcoming the numerous musical challenges presented in this piece. Currently, there is no resource that helps in solving performance choices and difficulties in this work. This first section of this document provides historical and contextual information on Arvo Pärt, his compositional output during his experimental period, and subsequently, Concerto Piccolo. The second section includes a performance analysis of the work, while the third gives trumpet players pedagogical suggestions and practical exercises for proper preparation of Concerto Piccolo. This guide presents performers with relevant background, analytical, and pedagogical information required for an informed and high-level performance.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
Deconstructing Webern's Op 25, Drei Lieder: a Multidimensional Assessment

Deconstructing Webern's Op 25, Drei Lieder: a Multidimensional Assessment

Date: August 2013
Creator: Morgeson, Paul Taylor
Description: Webern scholarship has not comprehensively examined op. 25, drei lieder. If the selection of text for op. 25 is viewed as one work in three movements they create a ternary form (A-B-A1). To show how this form is developed in the music the author creates a new analytical system based on Schoenberg's Grundgestalt which is defined by three basic ideas: symmetry, liquidation, and variation. The relationship between the voice and accompaniment and Webern's deliberate manipulation of the text is used to reveal the use of a program which is then tied to the numerical symbolism of 2 and 3.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
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