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Alexander Johnson's Ni' Concerto (1994) - Concerto no. 1 for Piano and Orchestra: a Discussion of Influences from Africa, Eastern and Western Europe

Description: In the new generation of artists emerging in South Africa, Alexander Johnson is considered the most prolific young composer of his day. In a recent review in the Pretoria News, Johnson has been praised by eminent critic Paul Boekkooi as a composer who has “an ear for the exotic and knows exactly how to bring it off....” He continued by noting that his music is “mentally engrossing, pleasurable to the senses and seems refreshingly free from dogmatic formulas." Johnson writes for musicians and the general public to equal satisfaction. His accessible compositions and catching use of melodic materials have made his writings very popular both in South Africa and abroad. During his residency in Belgrade in 1993-94, Johnson met Croatian pianist Dorian Leljak. Impressed with Johnson's compositional ideas and output, Leljak commissioned a work from Johnson for piano and orchestra. The result was the Niš Concerto, which Johnson completed in April 1994. The world premiere took place on June 23, 1994 with the Niš Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Anatoli Nowiestski with Dorian Leljak as soloist. The Niš Concerto received its South African premiere in 1995 during a simultaneous celebration for “Europe Day” and the new democracy of the Republic of South Africa. The Delegation of the European Commission of South Africa sponsored the celebration, which took place in the Aula Auditorium on the campus of the University of Pretoria. The performers included the Artium Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Dutch-born Prof. Henk Temmingh and Johnson himself as piano soloist.
Date: August 2001
Creator: Malan, Petronel

An Analysis of the Composition Process of Bartók's Eight Improvisations on Hungarian Peasant Songs, Op. 20

Description: This is a study of Bartók's compositional process as it relates to the Improvisations, Op. 20. The study, which focuses on the analysis of the draft manuscript 50PS1, compares the draft and other relevant sources with the final composition. Bartók's framework for the entire Improvisations is based on a compositional strategy of pairing individual improvisations combined with systematic revision of the draft copy by the introduction of tritones as tonal equivalents and movement by fifths from semitones, to achieve structural coherence in the individual improvisations. The tonic-dominant relationship is used to rearrange the individual improvisations in the draft and tritones as tonal equivalents are used to propel the movement between the improvisations to produce a coherent whole.
Date: May 2000
Creator: Kochbeck, Olivia M.

An analysis of the Sonata for Trumpet and Piano by Peter Maxwell Davies, identifying the use of historical forms, and the implications for performance.

Description: The Sonata for Trumpet and Piano by Peter Maxwell Davies is one of his earliest works, and a notoriously difficult work to perform. While using serialism and other twentieth-century compositional techniques, this work also uses older historical forms, including sonata-allegro and sonata-rondo forms. An analysis of the work is presented, identifying the older historical forms, and considerations for performers when making decisions on how to perform the work are provided.
Date: August 2006
Creator: Adduci, Kathryn James

'...and one of time.': A Composition for Full Orchestra with Narration

Description: ‘...and one of time.' is a reinterpretation of a small musical moment from Philip Glass' opera, Einstein on the Beach, centered around the phrase "Berne, Switzerland 1905." This reinterpretation is realized through the use of several different compositional techniques including spectral composition, micropolyphony and dodecaphony, as well as the application of extra-musical models developed by Alan Lightman, John Gardner, Italo Calvino and Albert Einstein.
Date: December 1999
Creator: Rinker, John Thomas

Aphorismen, Capriccio, and Heptameron for Piano Solo By Jürg Baur: a Performer's Guide

Description: 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.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Park, Esther

Asserting Identity in Wagner's Shadow: The Case of Engelbert Humperdinck's Königskinder (1897)

Description: Engelbert Humperdinck (1854-1921), who was considered a Wagnerian due to to his past work in Bayreuth and the Wagnerian traits of his Hänsel und Gretel, seems to have believed that to define himself as a composer, he had to engage somehow with that designation, whether through orthodox Wagner imitation or an assertion of his independence from Wagner's musical legacy. The latter kind of engagement can be seen in Humperdinck's Königskinder (1897), in which he developed a new kind of declamatory notation within the context of melodrama, thus fulfilling Wagnerian ideals as well as progressing beyond them. The effectiveness of Humperdinck's effort is seen in the ensuing critical reception, in which the realities of being heard as a Wagnerian composer are clarified.
Date: August 2004
Creator: Kinnett, Forest Randolph

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

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.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Yeung, Hin-Kei

Construction Applications, Practices, and Techniques of Natural Trumpets: A Comparative Analysis of Baroque and Modern Era Natural Trumpet Construction Methods

Description: This work discusses in detail the history of, and processes associated with the construction of baroque era trumpets then and now. The work addresses metallurgy, tools, construction methods, and playing characteristics of instruments built with old techniques and modern techniques.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Wells, Lawrence E.

A Critical Study of Arnold Schoenberg's Chamber Transcription of Gustav Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde

Description: Toward the end of his life, from 1908 to 1909, Gustav Mahler (1860-1911) composed Das Lied von der Erde (The song of the earth). This piece is a cycle of six song movements based on seven poems selected from Die chinesische Flötem - Nachdichtungen chinesischer Lyrik (The Chinese flute - free adaptation of Chinese lyric poetry) by Hans Bethge. The Chinese verse was written by Li-Po (numbers 1, 3, 4 and 5), Tchang-Tsi (number 2), and Mong-Kao-Jen and Wang-Wei (combined in number 6). Subsequently, in 1921, Arnold Schoenberg reduced the work to a simple chamber version transcription from Mahler's original massive score for full orchestra, a version completed in 1983 by Rainer Riehn. While the main melodic material in the vocal parts was maintained, the orchestral parts underwent substantial changes. This dissertation explores Mahler's reconfiguration of textual material and the setting of these texts in the orchestral medium. After consulting the various textual editions, I establish misreading and translational differences from the original Chinese through its various Western European incarnations; how and why Mahler chose the Bethge edition; what influenced his specific selection of poetry; and how these poems inform one another and the work as a whole. I also explore the crucial role of instrumentation and orchestration in text setting, and how his instrumentation of these translated "exotic" texts stands in dialogue with the nineteenth-century tradition and emergent frames of nationality. This dissertation also focuses on Schoenberg's instrumentation, arrangement, and orchestration as re-conceptualized and restructured from Mahler's original six movements. While the dissertation synthesizes the views of various scholars, many original observations will be offered, as few articles substantively consider this transcription of one of the most revered and reviled composers of the late-nineteenth century by one of the most revered and reviled composers of the twentieth-century. The transcript ...
Date: August 2006
Creator: Sun, Ai-Kuang

As Darkness Falls: A Composition for Wind Ensemble

Description: As Darkness Falls is a composition that explores our interaction with several aspects of darkness through the use of musical imagery. The imagery attempts to reflect the moods, feelings, and impressions of a person as he or she interacts with darkness. The non-programmatic character of the composition allows listeners to superimpose their own experiences onto the musical tapestry in order to manifest a personal connection between the listener and the music. As Darkness Falls is a composition scored for a minimum instrumentation of piccolo, 6 flutes, 3 oboes, 3 bassoons, 9 B-flat clarinets, B-flat bass clarinet, 2 E-flat alto saxophones, B-flat tenor saxophone, E-flat baritone saxophone, 4 B-flat trumpets, 4 horns in F, 3 tenor trombones, bass trombone, 2 euphoniums, 2 tubas, timpani, and 4 percussionists. The music consists of three movements (slow-slow-fast) lasting a total of approximately seventeen minutes. The duration of each of the three movements is six minutes, four and one-half minutes, and six and one-half minutes, respectively. The document also contains an analysis of the work by the composer. The analysis explores the compositional style of the work, focusing on musical aspects within each movement that were governing parameters in the compositional process.
Date: December 1999
Creator: Prinz, Kendall R.

A Different Drummer: A Chamber Opera

Description: A Different Drummer is a chamber opera adaptation of Donald Davis's story "A Different Drummer" from his collection Listening for the Crack of Dawn, published by August House. The opera lasts about seventy minutes, and calls for a cast of three and an orchestra of sixteen players. It contains a prologue, epilogue and four scenes in a single act. The score is prefaced by a paper describing the musical strategies employed in setting the story as an opera. Three chapters describe the adaptation from short story to opera, the essential musical elements, and details of the application of the musical elements in each scene of the opera. The libretto is presented in the fourth chapter.
Date: May 1999
Creator: Friedman, Arnold Jacob

East Meets West: Nationalistic Elements in Selected Piano Solo Works of Chen Yi

Description: Since the founding of "New China" in 1949, the musical culture has undergone numerous periods of identity crisis, particularly during the ten-year "Cultural Revolution," due to the fact that music had always been used to serve the needs of political propaganda. Even the development of a "National Style" encouraged by the central government was a political "brainchild" under the socialist ideology. Nevertheless, professional musicians struggled to create a new path in musical composition while walking on the thin ice of harsh political climate. Isolated from the rest of the world for almost two decades, China's musical development had not been able to keep pace with the world until the late 1970s, when the central government reevaluated its agenda on how to lead the country. This change of political environment eventually led to a more open society. The newly established contact with the outside world in the musical scene lent great opportunities for Chinese musicians to study the newest thinking about music, which ultimately, in the early 1980s, fostered the emergence of a new "National Style"- the so-called "New Wave." The style of "New Wave" differs drastically from the earlier "National Style" in that it employs primarily twentieth-century compositional techniques in the course of processing nationalistic elements. Throughout the development of "New Wave," Chen Yi was one of the most avid proponents and leading figures.
Date: August 2001
Creator: Li, Songwen

Extemporizing Reawakened: Saxophonist Branford Marsalis's Approach to the Cadenza for Concertino da Camera for Alto Saxophone and Eleven Instruments by Jacques Ibert

Description: Whether provided by a composer, written out by a performer or completely improvised, the cadenza became a vehicle for performers' creativity, lyricism and technical prowess in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The debate about whether to notate or improvise cadenzas, a question as old as the cadenza itself, continues today. Saxophonists have not been involved in this debate, since the instrument is a product of the mid-nineteenth century and was in its infancy just as the practice of improvising cadenzas was fading. This study documents an unprecedented, recently-recorded, improvised cadenza in one of the most significant twentieth-century saxophone works: Jacques Ibert's Concertino da Camera for Alto Saxophone and Eleven Instruments (1935). Saxophonist Branford Marsalis's neo-cadenza for Ibert's composition presents an aggregate of the twenty-first-century performer improvising a cadenza to a twentieth-century work, in a tradition that was common centuries ago. The document begins with an inquiry into improvised cadenzas, and proceeds to an examination of the performance history of the cadenza for the Concertino da Camera. Twenty professionally-recorded versions of the cadenza are presented in order to understand the performance history of the cadenza, and to place the Marsalis cadenza into context. This research culminates in a transcription and analysis of the cadenza as improvised and recorded by Marsalis. Remarks from a personal interview with Marsalis are also included.
Date: December 2006
Creator: James, Matthew T.

Five Seasons: A composition for flutist and percussionist

Description: Five Seasons is a musical work for flute and percussion. The flutist alternately performs on the C flute with a B foot, alto flute, piccolo, and bass flute in each movement. The percussionist also plays different instruments in each movement: the vibraphone for Mid-Summer; the xylophone for Fall; the woodblock, temple block, and cowbells for Spring; the glockenspiel for Summer; and the marimba for Winter. The five movements of this work - Mid-Summer, Fall, Spring, Summer, and Winter - are based on a combination of Eastern performing practices with Western instruments. The musical characteristics are based on the techniques of fifteenth-century (e.g., isorhythmic technique) and twentieth-century Western music.
Date: August 2001
Creator: Kim, Chol-Ho

Form, Style, Function and Rhetoric in Gottlob Harrer's Sinfonias: A Case Study in the Early History of the Symphony

Description: Gottlob Harrer (1703-1755) composed at least twenty-seven sinfonias for his patron Count Heinrich von Bruhl in Dresden from 1731-1747, placing them among the earliest concert symphonies written. Harrer's mostly autograph sinfonia manuscripts are significant documents that provide us with a more thorough understanding of musical activities in and around Dresden. Several of the works indicate topical references, including dance, march, and hunt allusions, that comment on the Dresden social occasions for which Harrer composed these works. Harrer mixes topical references with other gestures in several of his sinfonias to create what I believe is an unrecognized affective language functioning in instrumental works of the time. An examination of the topical allusions in Harrer's works solidifies their connection to the social milieu for which he wrote them, and therefore better defines the genre of the concert sinfonia of the time. The first part of this study of Harrer's sinfonias addresses evidence about the composer, his patron, Dresden society, and the circumstances surrounding the first performances of several works, musical evidence of the composer's stylistic and formal approach to the genre, and the rhetorical meaning of topical gestures in the scores in ways not yet explored. In this dissertation, I demonstrate that the stylistic and formal characteristics of Harrer's sinfonias were often influenced by the function and context of their premieres. Part Two of the dissertation provides transcriptions of Harrer's sinfonias, making them available for performance and further study in the hope that such a holistic approach will enrich our appreciation of musical life in Dresden in the 1730s.
Date: August 2003
Creator: Rober, Russell Todd

Gunther Schuller and John Swallow: Collaboration, Composition, and Performance Practice in Eine Kleine Posaunenmusik, with Three Recitals of Selected Works by Berio, Bogle, Gregson, Pryor, Suderburg and Others

Description: Gunther Schuller is credited with coining the term Third Stream, meaning compositions where twentieth-century art music forms exist simultaneously with jazz. Furthermore, Schuller specifically states in the liner notes to the debut recording of Eine Kleine Posaunenmusik "The work is not a Third Stream piece." Yet the concerto alludes to jazz through a multitude of slide glissandi and plunger mute effects, Solotone mute passages, specific references to the jazz trombone styles of Tommy Dorsey and Lawrence Brown, musical quoting or indirect reference, and the use of a walking bass line in Movement V, Finale. What makes one piece Third Stream and another simply a modern composition with jazz implications? Is Third Stream primarily a compositional designation or a performance practice stipulation? How does a celebrated trombone soloist inspire and collaborate with a distinguished composer in the creation of a major work? The somewhat conspicuous title, Eine Kleine Posaunenmusik, seems to point towards Mozart's famous string serenade Eine Kleine Nachtmusik. What connection to Mozart, if any, does Schuller's title suggest? All of these questions are elucidated in this study through careful investigation and research of Gunther Schuller's Eine Kleine Posaunenmusik. New interviews with John Swallow and Gunther Schuller are included.
Date: May 2000
Creator: Bogle, James Michael

José Antonio Gómez´s Versos Para Órgano (Section I): a Practical Guide for Performance

Description: José Antonio Gómez is an important figure in Mexican music history and his works are considered representative of the beginning of Mexico´s Independent era. Some musicians are familiar with Gómez´s choral output but his organ music is rarely considered. Due to the lack of an edition of Gómez´s Versets for Organ, a practical guide was found needed to aid its performance. This study is based on performance, analysis, and direct work on the only known source for it. The first chapter, Introduction, presents the argument for an edited version of the first part of the manuscript as a performance guide. The second provides biographical information on the composer. The third chapter discusses the background for the original performance of the Versets for Organ. Chapter 4 provides performance considerations for the works. The edition of the manuscript is included in chapter 5.
Date: August 2012
Creator: Carrasco Curíntzita, Laura A.

Keyboard Innovation: Harry Partch's Contributions

Description: "Harry Partch's Keyboard Innovation" is a computer-assisted demonstration that introduces the tuning system used primarily by the twentieth-century American composer, Harry Partch. The multimedia product was developed in Director 6.0, and it includes sound and video clips from CDs and videocassettes of Partch's works produced by Phillip Blackburn and distributed by the American Composers Forum. The content of the demonstration involves a 43-tone microtonal tuning system and its application in the music literature. This demonstration will discuss the chronological order in which these prototypes were developed and also includes samples of the tuning of notes in Partch's scale that the novice can experiment with interactively. These tones were synthesized using the Csound scores shown in Appendix B. Materials for this demonstration are based on Harry Partch's Genesis of a Music.
Date: August 2000
Creator: Koh,Wee Lay

The Long Chorale Preludes of J. S. Bach (1685-1750): Study of Accompaniments together with Three Recitals of Selected Works by Dietrich Buxtehude (1637-1707), J. S. Bach, Louis Vierne (1870-1937), and Others

Description: Johann Sebastian Bach's chorale preludes are varied and artistic not only in the treatment of chorale melodies, but also in the accompaniments of those chorale melodies. This study examines the accompaniments of Bach's long chorale preludes, focusing on identifying the various types and the characteristics that make them unique. This study investigates the two broad categories of accompaniments depending on whether the motives are chorale-derived or independent of the chorale. While the chorale prelude accompaniments in the first large group are closely related, the accompaniments of the chorale preludes in the second group stand independently and illustrate the vast range of Bach's compositional skill. Both groups demonstrate Bach's interest in expanding his predecessors' models, a trait that can be traced throughout all of Bach's compositional history.
Date: May 2006
Creator: Lim, Aesook

Memento mori: Concert for Violoncello and Orchestra

Description: Death, as a subject, has been treated extensively throughout history, both in literature as well as in music. The focus of Memento mori is to portray the inevitability of death through music. The first part of the document is an essay exploring the topic of death, its inevitability, unpredictability and the fragility of life. This section also includes a number of examples of composer's whose works have influenced the composition of the piece. The title of the work is meant to reflect that death catches up with all of us and that humans no matter how invincible they feel at certain stages of life will, eventually, succumb to death. The second part of the document is the notated orchestral score. The work is for full orchestra and solo violoncello. It is in three acts that loosely resemble three stages of life; Youth followed by life in adulthood and finally death. The work is not programmatic and the piece's formal structure varies from a traditional concerto, for although comprised of three distinct acts, there are no pauses between them. The entire work is meant to be dark and morbid and the specter of death looms throughout the piece.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Fakhouri, Fouad K.

Michael Daugherty's Red Cape Tango: A Comparative Study of the Original Version for Symphony Orchestra and its Transcription for Wind Orchestra, with Four Recitals of Selected Works by Beethoven, Dvorák, Verdi, Bartók and Daugherty

Description: Michael Daugherty has created his niche in the music world by composing works inspired by icons of American popular culture. Red Cape Tango is the final movement of his Metropolis Symphony, a work inspired by the life and times of the comic book character Superman. This movement in particular deals with the death of the superhero through the use of musical elements, most notably the Latin Sequence of the Mass for the Dead, Dies irae. Daugherty's ingenuity in blending profoundly dark subjects with humor is particularly evident in this work. Death is personified as a temptress and lures Superman through the power of a seductive tango. This study concentrates on Daugherty's compositional style and its impact in musical circles. A transcription for wind orchestra was created by another composer/conductor precisely because of the need to bring such an important work to another medium, thus making it accessible to a wider audience. In addition, this study looks at the changes in instrumentation necessary to create a second, equally formidable version of the work.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Ortega, Arturo

Music preferences, music and non-music media use, and leisure involvement of Hong Kong adolescents.

Description: The study sought to determine the relationships of preference responses to grade, gender, familiarity, musical training, peers'/parents' listening habits, music media use, and listening contexts. Grade six through nine Hong Kong students (N = 310) completed the audio preference test followed by verbal responses to training, peers'/parents' preferences, leisure/music media involvement, and listening context. Results indicated: The preferred genres, in descending order, were Western pop/rock, Cantopop/rock, Western classical; the disliked genres were jazz, Chinese, and non- Western/non-Chinese. Preference correlated strongly with genre familiarity. Pop genres were the most familiar to all adolescents. The students' preference toward Western pop/rock and Cantopop/rock associated with several listening contexts: solitary listening, having great freedom to choose one's desired music for listening, listening to music in one's room, and listening to music as background activity. The adolescents expressed that their leisure activities were spent with their family and friends. However, they made it clear that music listening was a personal activity that very likely was listened to alone. On all listening occasions, the girls exhibited a more positive response than the boys did. With four to five hours daily leisure time, the adolescents watched TV for three to four hours while spending less than two hours on listening to recorded music, and less than an hour on listening to radio music, MTV/karaoke, and music websites. Cantopop/rock was the most pursued music style in terms of the records bought, concerts attended outside of school, their peers', and parents' most-listened-to music. Some weak correlations of preference with grade and gender were identified: the grade six students showed more tolerance to Chinese and non-Western/non-Chinese music. Boys preferred jazz more than the girls did. Private music study and extracurricular musical experiences related to Western classical and non-Western/non-Chinese music preferences whereas school music training failed to show any association with ...
Date: December 2001
Creator: Hui, Viny Wan-Fong

Die Neue Lehre: Developing an Online Course in Schenkerian Analysis

Description: With the proliferation of Schenkerian theory in the US, Great Britain, and mainland Europe in the past quarter century, the pedagogy of Schenkerian analysis has become an important issue. Schenker himself was suspicious of textbooks with their tendency for artificial codification and over-simplification; rather, he recognized that his “New Teaching” (“Die neue Lehre”) – as he called it – required a different, more “organic” pedagogical approach that was both personal and yet accessible to a wide audience. New digital technologies and the Internet now have made it possible to disseminate Schenker’s pedagogical approach by adapting interactive techniques of Web-based instruction. Schenker’s “new teaching” was as organic as his theory itself – and as novel in the connections it sought to draw between the individualed disciplines of theory, musicology, composition, and performance. The interactive and multi-media components of Web-based instruction enable us to realize Schenker’s own pedagogical approach to Schenkerian analysis instruction.
Date: August 2001
Creator: Sadoff, Jennifer

The Nightingale in Poetry and Music

Description: This thesis surveys a variety of songs and arias for high soprano which feature the nightingale; examines the musical elements that symbolize, refer to, or imitate the nightingale; and compares these musical elements with transcriptions of the nightingale's song. The first chapter reviews the symbolic development of the nightingale and its role in poetry and literature. The interior chapters address a selection of musical compositions that feature the nightingale and its song. The final chapter establishes a relationship between the sound of the actual sound of the nightingale and the musical gestures created by composers to imitate the nightingale.
Date: May 2003
Creator: Blizzard, Amy