Korean Traditional Elements and Contemporary Compositional Techniques in Hyowon Woo’s Choral Music As Reflected in Gloria

Korean Traditional Elements and Contemporary Compositional Techniques in Hyowon Woo’s Choral Music As Reflected in Gloria

Date: August 2012
Creator: Chang, Yoonchung
Description: 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, ...
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Chen Yi and Her Choral Music: A Study of the Composer's Ideal of Fusing Chinese Music and Modern Western Choral Traditions

Chen Yi and Her Choral Music: A Study of the Composer's Ideal of Fusing Chinese Music and Modern Western Choral Traditions

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Date: December 2006
Creator: Yeung, Hin-Kei
Description: Chen Yi's music is well accepted and recognized nationally and internationally through an increasing number of commissions and performances. Major symphony orchestras, choruses, institutions and companies request her compositions on many occasions in order to increase understanding and exploration of Chinese influences on western classical idioms. This study provides the first detailed discussion of her compositional mastery and her fusion of Chinese music with the language of western choral traditions. Chen Yi's reputation as a prominent orchestral composer does not restrain her passion to apply instrumental techniques and materials to her quality choral compositions. This study focuses on (1) how hardship and various life experiences during the ten-year Cultural Revolution shaped Chen Yi's musical inspirations; (2) how the influences of major musical genres, such as traditional Chinese folksong, jingju, model play, 19th-20th century nationalism, impressionism, and serialism are consolidated in her kaleidoscopic compositional techniques; and (3) the application of Chinese languages, pedagogical concepts, and extra-musical elements, such as Chinese poems, paintings, and calligraphies, revealed in her original, intelligent and resourceful choral creations.
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Choral resonance: Re-examining concepts of tone and unification.

Choral resonance: Re-examining concepts of tone and unification.

Date: August 2008
Creator: Quist, Amanda Renee
Description: Resonant singing creates possibilities with dynamic shading, subtlety of phrasing, and rich vibrant tone that astonishes listeners. Choral singing that employs resonance as a fundamental ensemble virtue yields impressive results that lend themselves well to the varying demands of any choral score. Fortunately, choruses of every level can benefit from an increased understanding of the basic principles of resonance in the singing voice. Research on issues of upper partial energy and the presence of the singer's formant in a choral ensemble has been limited in approach. Many published studies regarding upper partial energy in the choral ensemble are based on what the ensemble is already doing, which is linked to the teaching of that specific director and that specific choir. Research must include a wider range of aesthetic choices with regard to choral unification. Through examining spectrograms that represent the sound of some of the most renowned choirs, it is possible to see that many of these ensembles are producing tone that contains a high level of upper formant energy. Interviews with established conductors reveal approaches and teaching methodologies that reinforce this type of singing. It is possible to teach the individuals in a choir to increase the level of ...
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Then Svenska Messan by Johan Helmich Roman: A Study of Text Setting

Then Svenska Messan by Johan Helmich Roman: A Study of Text Setting

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Date: December 2005
Creator: Lindström, G. Mikael
Description: This document includes a brief biography of Johan Helmich Roman, a discussion about the two most important manuscripts of Then Svenska Messan, or The Swedish Mass, and a discussion concerning the circumstances of the first performance of this work. Roman was a prolific composer of instrumental works for various ensembles and solo instruments. He wrote a smaller amount of vocal music and even less choral music; however, most of his music for choirs, vocal ensembles, and vocal soloists featured the Swedish language. The composer advocated the establishment of uniform rules of Swedish spelling and grammar. He also sought to develop and expand the genre of Church music in the Swedish vernacular. This document focuses on the composer's attention to the nature of the Swedish language when setting the text.
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The Choral Works of Robert Ward: A View of His Compositional Approach to Text Settings and His Use of Symbols and Allusions

The Choral Works of Robert Ward: A View of His Compositional Approach to Text Settings and His Use of Symbols and Allusions

Date: May 2007
Creator: Tucker, Carlton S.
Description: Robert Eugene Ward's impressive body of work encompasses almost every genre of music. He has composed symphonies, operas, large orchestral pieces, chamber works, solo instrumental pieces, extended choral works, short choral pieces, ceremonial works, a ballet, theatre pieces, and even jazz and swing band pieces. Ward's name is recognized in most musical circles but usually only for his opera The Crucible, a work for which he earned a Pulitzer Prize in 1962. In fact, a survey of all the dissertations, articles, interviews, and books written about Robert Ward shows that the vast majority of these studies focus on his most famous opera. His choral works, though they comprise some of Ward's most expressive work, have received little attention. Ward's works show a deliberate use of symbols and allusions. While this use is far from an innovative concept in composition, Ward distinguishes himself with a consistent and purposeful application of these devices establishing an unmistakable interweaving of text, composition, and context. This study examines several of Ward's short choral compositions as they relate to the composer's use of symbols and allusions. Comparisons are made to Ward's use of these devices in his operatic works as a means of determining the consistency ...
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An Approach to the Critical Evaluation of Settings of the Poetry of Walt Whitman: Lowell Liebermann's  Symphony No. 2

An Approach to the Critical Evaluation of Settings of the Poetry of Walt Whitman: Lowell Liebermann's Symphony No. 2

Date: May 2003
Creator: Kenaston, Karen S.
Description: Walt Whitman's poetry continues to inspire composers of choral music, and the growing collection of musical settings necessitates development of a standard evaluative tool. Critical evaluation of the musical settings of Whitman's work is difficult because the extensive body of verse is complex and of uneven quality, and lack of common text among compositions makes comparison problematical. The diversity of musical styles involved further complicates the issue. Previous studies have focused on either ideology or style, but none have united the two critical approaches, thus restricting potential for deeper understanding of the music. This study proposes an approach to critical evaluation of Whitman settings that applies hermeneutics, or a blend of analysis and criticism, to the process. The hermeneutic approach includes an examination of the interrelationship between musical form and style and the composer's ideology, which is revealed through his/her treatment of Whitman's poetry and analyzed in light of cultural influences. Lowell Liebermann (b. 1961) has composed a large scale choral/orchestral setting of Whitman texts in his Symphony No. 2, opus 67 (1999). The selection, placement, and treatment of poetry in Symphony No. 2 provide a window into the composer's mind and his place in the current musical climate. Liebermann's ...
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Increasing glottal closure in an untrained male chorus by integrating historical, scientific, and clinical practice into choral voice building exercises

Increasing glottal closure in an untrained male chorus by integrating historical, scientific, and clinical practice into choral voice building exercises

Date: May 2009
Creator: Cottrell, Duane Coles
Description: An examination of the historical treatises of Manuel Garcia II and Giambattista Mancini, scientific studies pertaining to glottal closure, and Vocal Function Exercises used in clinical speech pathology led to an exploratory study that attempted to increase the glottal closure in an untrained university male chorus using only choral voice building exercises. The exploratory study used a single group, pre-test post-test design, and data was recorded using audio recordings of the entire chorus as well as electroglottograph measurements of individual subjects. The data show an increase in glottal closure as measured by closed quotient values, and an increase in energy in the upper partials of the recorded acoustic signal from the chorus.
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Stabat Mater by Frank Ferko, A Mosaic of Mourning: The Universality of Mothers' Grief, Ancient Texts Made Relevant by the Addition of English Interpolations

Stabat Mater by Frank Ferko, A Mosaic of Mourning: The Universality of Mothers' Grief, Ancient Texts Made Relevant by the Addition of English Interpolations

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Date: May 2006
Creator: Wilson, Barbara Sue Johnston
Description: This document examines Frank Ferko's unique setting of the ancient Latin sequence, Stabat Mater that incorporates five English interpolations dealing with the subject of parental grief over the loss of a child. The twenty Latin stanzas and five English interpolations are examined harmonically and philosophically, as two separate works. The tonal architecture of the work, outlined in two large arches built on key relationships, is explored in the body of the paper in addition to a graphic depiction and table of key centers. The interrelationship between key centers and textual considerations is examined. An extensive interview with the composer provided invaluable information regarding the creative process as it relates to the choice of English texts, compositional techniques and influences, and the stylistic musical diversity that characterizes the work. Three prominent American conductors, who have conducted significant performances Stabat Mater discussed specific problems and solutions in preparing and performing the work. Data pertaining to Stabat Mater history and other settings was gathered from reference materials, periodicals, and internet sources.
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Alberto Grau: The Composer, Selected Works, and Influence upon the Venezuelan and International Choral Community

Alberto Grau: The Composer, Selected Works, and Influence upon the Venezuelan and International Choral Community

Date: August 2007
Creator: Yu, Julie
Description: Alberto Grau is arguably one of the most influential contemporary Venezuelan choral composers and conductors of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. This thesis explores the synthesis of Venezuelan nationalism with global internationalism found within his works. As a student of the nationalistic generation of composers (Vicente Emilio Sojo, Juan Bautista Plaza, and Ángel Sauce) Grau's works display the distinct characteristics found in Venezuelan music. His output also exhibits international influences, using texts associated with social and environmental events and concerns including literary and musical influences of other nations and cultures. The first section of the thesis traces the lineage of Venezuelan choral composers beginning with the colonial period and the Escuela de Chacao to the nationalistic composers from the Santa Capilla generation. The second section describes Alberto Grau's compositional style as exemplified in his work Kasar mie la gaji (The Earth is Tired). The final section of the document comprises interviews with Alberto Grau and his wife, the Venezuelan choral conductor, María Guinand. Guinand studied piano and conducting with Alberto Grau and was his assistant at the Orfeón Universitario Simón Bolívar and the Schola Cantorum de Caracas. She is the founding conductor of the Cantoría Alberto Grau and the editor ...
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John Harbison's The Flight into Egypt: An Analysis for Performance

John Harbison's The Flight into Egypt: An Analysis for Performance

Date: May 2008
Creator: Galante, Brian Edward
Description: John Harbison's status as a significant contemporary American composer is confirmed by his numerous appointments, honorary degrees, and awards. He is the recipient of nearly every major composition award, with works performed by major orchestras and in important opera houses spanning the world. This paper examines in detail Harbison's most acclaimed choral work, the 1987 Pulitzer Prize-winning The Flight into Egypt. This study of the score is a "conductor's analysis," offering a musical guide for the conductor who seeks to perform this work. To provide a context for the discussion, Chapter 1 offers a brief biographical sketch of Harbison's life and career. Chapter 2 provides the analysis of the work and includes a history from commission to premier, a discussion of Harbison's selection of text, and an examination of the pitch organization which informs the piece. In Chapter 3, I present important rehearsal and performance implications to consider when undertaking a performance of the work. Interviews with two well-regarded conductors who have performed The Flight into Egypt, David Hoose and Patrick Gardner, and the composer himself, provide valuable insight into this discourse.
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