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'...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.
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Date: December 1999
Creator: Rinker, John Thomas
Partner: UNT Libraries

Critical Discussion of Pleroma: A Digital Drama and Its Relevance to Tragic Form in Music

Description: Pleroma is a digital drama: a work composed of digital animation combined with electroacoustic music, presenting an original dramatic narrative. Pleroma's dramatic elements evoke both the classical form of tragedy and the concept of perceptual paradox. A structural overview of the drama and its characters and a plot synopsis are given to provide context for the critical discussion. Analytical descriptions of Beethoven's Coriolan Overture Op.62 and Mahler's Symphony No. 9 are provided to give background on tragic form and Platonic allegory in music. An investigation into the elements discussed in the analysis of the instrumental works reveals several layers of possible interpretation in Pleroma. Dramatic elements allow for tragic narratives to be constructed, but they are complemented by character associations formed by pitch relationships, stylistic juxtapositions, and instrumentation. A copy of the dramatic text is included to supplement the multimedia production.
Date: December 2010
Creator: Lucas, Stephen
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Contemporary Bassoonist: Music for Interactive Electroacoustics and Bassoon

Description: As the bassoon has evolved over time, the music written for the instrument has evolved around it, and was many times the catalyst for its evolution. Bassoon music of the seventeenth through early twentieth centuries has defined much of the curricula for bassoon studies, and has established how we consider and experience the bassoon. We experience, write, and consume music in vastly different ways than just a generation ago. Humans use technology for the most basic of tasks. Composers are using the technology of our generation to compose music that is a reflection of our time. This is a significant aspect of art music today, and bassoonists are barely participating in the creation of this new repertoire. Performance practice often considers only the musical score; interactive electronic music regularly goes beyond that. The combination of technological challenges and inexperience can make approaching electroacoustic music a daunting and inaccessible type of music for bassoonists. These issues require a different language to the performance practice: one that addresses music, amplification, computer software, hardware, the collaboration between performer and technology, and often the performer and composer. The author discusses problems that performers face when rehearsing and performing interactive electroacoustic works for bassoon, and offers some solutions.
Date: May 2016
Creator: Masone, Jolene Karen
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Sound-Poetry of the Instability of Reality: Mimesis in Music, Literature, and Visual Art

Description: This paper uses the concept of mimesis to clarify the debate concerning the representation of reality in music. Specifically, this study defines the audio reality effect and the three main practices of realism as a way of understanding mimetic practices in multiple artistic media, in particular regarding the multimedia works of the "Landscape series." After addressing the historical debates concerning mimesis, this study develops a framework for the understanding of mimesis in sound by addressing the writings of Weiss, Baudrillard, Barthes, Deleuze, and Prendergast and by examining mimetic practices in 19th-century European painting and multimedia performance works. The audio reality effect is proposed as a meaningful translation of Roland Barthes' literary reality effect to the sonic realm. The main trends of realist practice are applied to electroacoustic music and soundscape composition using the works and writings of Emmerson, Truax, Wishart, Risset, Riddell, Smalley, Murray Schafer, Fischman, Young, and Field. Lastly, this study mimetically analyzes "2 seconds / b minor / wave" by Michael Pisaro and Taku Sugimoto and the works of the "Landscape series" in order to demonstrate the relevance of mimesis for understanding current musical practice.
Date: May 2016
Creator: Underriner, Charles Francis
Partner: UNT Libraries

Orchestra Bells as a Chamber and Solo Instrument: A Survey of Works by Steve Reich, Morton Feldman, Franco Donatoni, Robert Morris, Marta Ptaszyńska, Will Ogdon, Stuart Saunders Smith, Lafayette Gilchrist and Roscoe Mitchell

Description: This dissertation considers the use of orchestra bells as a solo instrument. I use three examples taken from chamber literature (Drumming by Steve Reich, Why Patterns? by Morton Feldman, and Ave by Franco Donatoni) to demonstrate uses of the instrument in an ensemble setting. I use six solo, unaccompanied orchestra bell pieces (Twelve Bell Canons by Robert Morris, Katarynka by Marta Ptaszyńska, Over by Stuart Saunders Smith, A Little Suite and an Encore Tango by Will Ogdon, Breaks Through by Lafayette Gilchrist, and Bells for New Orleans by Roscoe Mitchell) to illustrate the instrument’s expressive, communicative ability. In the discussion of each piece, I include brief background information, the composer’s musical language in the piece and performance considerations. I interviewed composers of these solo works to complete the research for this document to discuss their musical language and their thoughts on writing for solo orchestra bells.
Date: May 2016
Creator: Douglass, Mark
Partner: UNT Libraries

Creating Musical Momentum: Textural and Timbral Sculpting with Intuitive Compositional Systems and Formal Design

Description: This dissertation explores the analysis and creation of compositions from the standpoint of texture and momentum. It is comprised of four chapters. The first presents a number of concepts as tools for analysis, including textural typography and transformation, perception of time and psychological engagement of an audience, and respiration as a metaphor for musical momentum. The second and third chapters apply these tools to Gerard Grisey's "Periodes" and "Partiels," and Brian Ferneyhough's "Lemma-Icon-Epigram." The fourth explores specific methodologies used in composing my dissertation piece, "Phase," including the application of number systems ranging from formal to local levels.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Robin, Bradley G.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Two Piano Editions of the Third and Fifth Movements of Bartók's Concerto for Orchestra: Their Textual Fidelity and Technical Accessibility

Description: In the case of Concerto for Orchestra, Béla Bartók transcribed one of his most emblematic orchestral compositions to his own solo instrument, the piano. This transcription's primary function was to suffice for ballet rehearsal accompaniment for the choreography to be introduced alongside a performance of the orchestral work. György Sándor, Bartók's pupil and pianist, prepared the original manuscript for publication. Logan Skelton, pianist-composer, used this published edition as a point of departure for his own piano arrangement of the same work. György Sándor took an editorial approach to the score and followed the manuscript as literally as possible. On the other hand, Logan Skelton treated the same musical material daringly, striving for technical simplicity and a richer orchestral sound. The purpose of this study is to examine and identify the contrasting treatments pertaining to playability, text, and texture in the Bartók-Sándor edition and Skelton arrangement of the two movements, Elegia and Finale, of the Concerto for Orchestra piano arrangement.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Polgar, Eva
Partner: UNT Libraries

Tempered Confetti: Defining Instrumental Collage Music in Tempered Confetti and Venni, Viddi, --

Description: This thesis explores collage music's formal elements in an attempt to better understand its various themes and apply them in a workable format. I explore the work of John Zorn; how time is perceived in acoustic collage music and the concept of "super tempo"; musical quotation and appropriation in acoustic collage music; the definition of acoustic collage music in relation to other acoustic collage works; and musical montages addressing the works of Charles Ives, Lucciano Berio, George Rochberg, and DJ Orange. The last part of this paper discusses the compositional process used in the works Tempered Confetti and Venni, Viddi, – and how all issues of composing acoustic collage music are addressed therein.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Campbell, Andrew
Partner: UNT Libraries

Critical Discussion of Pleroma: A Digital Drama and Its Relevance to Tragic Form in Music

Description: Pleroma is a digital drama: a work composed of digital animation combined with electroacoustic music, presenting an original dramatic narrative. Pleroma's dramatic elements evoke both the classical form of tragedy and the concept of perceptual paradox. A structural overview of the drama and its characters and a plot synopsis are given to provide context for the critical discussion. Analytical descriptions of Beethoven's Coriolan Overture Op.62 and Mahler's Symphony No. 9 are provided to give background on tragic form and Platonic allegory in music. An investigation into the elements discussed in the analysis of the instrumental works reveals several layers of possible interpretation in Pleroma. Dramatic elements allow for tragic narratives to be constructed, but they are complemented by character associations formed by pitch relationships, stylistic juxtapositions, and instrumentation. A copy of the dramatic text is included to supplement the multimedia production: http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc33228/
Date: December 2010
Creator: Lucas, Stephen
Partner: UNT Libraries

Techniques of Sensual Perception: The Creation of Emotional Pathways

Description: Some artists strive to create artwork that has aesthetic value. If a piece of artwork has the ability to capture the attention of an audience, it must contain strong sensual attributes. Thus, understanding how to design an art form to contain strong sensual attributes may increase the possibility of an aesthetic experience. Since aesthetics is an experience of sensations perceived when in contact with a creative form in any artistic discipline, it is necessary for an artist to understand the nature of the sensual experience. In understanding the sensual experience, artists may be able to create techniques to enhance the aesthetic experience of their work. My video piece, entitled Ararat is a study of methods to enhance the sensual experience. I hope to accomplish this by means of using techniques that optimize an audience's perceptual experience.
Access: This item is restricted to UNT Community Members. Login required if off-campus.
Date: December 1999
Creator: Henry, Jon L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Heidegger Collection

Description: The dissertation consists of two parts: (1) the essay and (2) the composition. The essay elucidates the composer's creative process of the orchestral works, The Heidegger Collection. The Heidegger Collection has five movements. The titles of each movement are derived from the key philosophical concepts from Heidegger's most significant writing, Being and Time: (1) State-of-Mind, (2) Idle-Talk, (3) Moment-of-Vision, (4) Dread, and (5) Being-towards-the-End. The essay discusses the meanings of the five concepts, and explains how I express my reaction to Heidegger's thinking through music composition. The essay also discusses the essential musical language of The Heidegger Collection, such as interval cycles, polyrhythmic patterns, algorithmic elements, portamento effects, chaos theory, and oriental influence.
Date: August 2000
Creator: Lin, Tung-Lung
Partner: UNT Libraries

Heart of the Fathers, for Wind Symphony

Description: Heart of the Fathers is a programmatic, seven movement work for wind symphony depicting my ancestors and their role as part of the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The movements represent their spiritual experiences, labors, times of joy, persecution, migration, and finally their arrival and success in their new homeland. The piece is organized in seven movements. Each movement represents a different portion of history leading to the western migration of my ancestors. The programmatic music contains a variety of symbols depicting the experiences of the pioneers. In the paper, each chapter addresses an individual movement. For each movement, the following information is provided: the historical events that inspired the piece, the musical symbols that characterize the program, and an analysis of the function of the music.
Date: May 2000
Creator: Anderson, Stephen Reg
Partner: UNT Libraries

"Marvelous Accidents": The Concerto for Prepared Piano and Chamber Orchestra of John Cage

Description: John Cage’s Concerto for Prepared Piano and Chamber Orchestra (1950-51) holds a unique position within the composer’s oeuvre as the first work based in part on chance-derived compositional procedures. Cage entered into such practice gradually, incrementally abandoning subjective taste and personal expression through the course of the work. Drawing from the philosophical framework provided by Cage’s "Lecture on Nothing" (1950) and "Lecture on Something" (c. 1951-52), this thesis explores the aesthetic foundations of the concerto and examines Cage’s compositional methodology throughout its three movements. Special attention is paid to the procedure underlying the first movement, whose analysis is based largely on the composer’s manuscript materials for the work.
Date: December 1999
Creator: Boutwell, Brett N.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Hearing History: Musical Borrowing in the Percussion Ensemble Works, Duo Chopinesque and Chameleon Music

Description: Duo Chopinesque by Michael Hennagin and Chameleon Music by Dan Welcher represent two of the most significant percussion ensemble compositions written in the last twenty years. Both works are written for the mostly mallet type of percussion ensemble wherein the keyboard instruments predominate. However, the most unique aspect of these two pieces is their use of musical quotation. Duo Chopinesque borrows Chopin's Prelude in E minor in its entirety, while Chameleon Music borrows portions from four Mozart Sonatas. This paper places each work within the history of the percussion ensemble, and in the larger history of musical quotation in the twentieth century. In addition, the compositional characteristics of both works are examined with particular emphasis on each composer's use of borrowed material from the music of Mozart and Chopin. Particular attention is paid to the relationship between quoted material and newly composed rhythmic motives.
Date: December 1999
Creator: Fulton, Stephen L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Reconstructions: Nine Movements for Solo Soprano, Chorus, and Wind Ensemble

Description: Reconstructions is a nine-movement composition for solo soprano, chorus, and wind ensemble using texts from several of Emily Dickinson's poems. The soloist represents the main character in this dramatic work, and the narrative structure portrays abstract moments in this character's life. While the narrative structure of the reconstructed fragments is important to the form of the composition, other elements are also significant. Pitch structures generated from set theoretical systems, in addition to cyclic and palindromic structures are utilized throughout. Timbre also delineates the form, as various combinations of instruments and chorus create an evolving environment in which the soloist resides.
Date: December 1999
Creator: Makela, Steven L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

La Primavera: Concertino for English Horn and Chamber Orchestra

Description: La Primavera: Concertino for English Horn and Chamber Orchestra is a work in a traditional chamber orchestra instrumentation: single woodwinds (flute, oboe, clarinet, and bassoon), two French horns, trumpet, timpani and strings. A through-composed work of 14 minutes in duration, the Concertino is conceptually based on the idea that spring is not the first of the seasons, but rather the last. As a result, all of its motivic materials are organically linked to one another, and function as paired forces that struggle for supremacy. The introduction of the third motive functions as a motivic synthesis, since it contains intrinsic elements of previous motives. There are several important compositions based on the topic of the seasons among them we find: Vivaldi's Concerto Grosso Le Quatro Staggione, Haydn's oratorio The Seasons, and Piazzola's chamber work Las Estaciones. While researching this topic, the conceptual dilemma of spring as the last season was considered. This became a turning point in the compositional process strong enough to consider the spring as a singular topic of interest. The analysis of this work through Derrida's Deconstruction theory first came to me while reading Rose Rosengerd Subotnick's Deconstructive Variations: Music and Reason in Western Society. The Linguistic approach, was inspired in part by Leonard Bernstein's lecture “The Unanswered Question,” and Jean J. Nattiez's Music and Discourse: Toward a Semiology of Music.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Esperilla Garcia, Efrain Ernesto
Partner: UNT Libraries

Pilgrim Carnival

Description: This thesis explores an experimental music approach to writing autobiography. As a composition, Pilgrim Carnival took place as a travelling series of events. The central event was a sound installation for a blindfolded audience. This essay is a description of that series of events as well as a discussion of similar precedents in interdisciplinary art. Beginning with Luigi Russolo and Marcel Duchamp, aspects of autobiography are examined in both noise music and the concept of the ready-made artwork. Body Art of the 1970s, particularly the work of Marina Abramovic, is also tied into the idea of the ready-made artwork as an explicitly autobiographical example. The hybrid form of Pilgrim Carnival and the concept of ready-made autobiographical music create ongoing potential for new work.
Date: August 2002
Creator: House, Kayli
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Fallow Ground: A Composition for Pierrot Ensemble with Percussion and Male Voice

Description: The inspiration for The Fallow Ground is the time period of the Second Great Awakening (1790-1840s) and, in particular, the life and impact of one of the period's central figures: Charles Grandison Finney. Finney was a lawyer-turned-evangelist whose preaching style led to explosive and emotional conversions and helped spread the fire of revival throughout the state of New York and eventually throughout the country. In The Fallow Ground I have taken different events from Finney's life and the revivalist culture to create musical analogs that examine and critique the events within a twenty-first century musical aesthetic. Quotation and allusion of revival period hymns play a significant part in The Fallow Ground. Inspired by the works of Ives, Crumb, Ligeti, and Schnittke, quotation is used in this piece to develop or subvert the material, thus creating different contextual meanings from familiar material. In this way, the quotation not only alludes to an idea outside of the piece, but also casts a critical view of that idea by its placement in the context of the piece. Concerning the instrumentation, The Fallow Ground is written for what is commonly called the Pierrot ensemble (flute, clarinet, violin, cello, piano, and percussion) with male soloist. In my piece, the soprano has been replaced by a baritone soloist. The piece, approximately thirty minutes in length, has a chiastic five-movement structure with each of the movements depicting certain events or concepts that were prevalent during the time of Charles Finney and the Second Great Awakening.
Date: May 2011
Creator: Thomas, Paul David
Partner: UNT Libraries

Presencing Absence

Description: This thesis is a 'big-picture' look at the course of Western philosophy and its eventual arrival at ideas that look remarkably similar to the revelations of Guatama Buddha 2500 years ago. I look at the roots of how the West has understood itself and understood "being" through the centuries and at the revolutions in thought that took place in the 20th century. I look more closely at 20th century thinkers to demonstrate how their thinking begins to align with the ancient insights of Eastern philosophy, particularly the notions of a prevailing emptiness as "ground" of Being and of the fallacy of the individual subject. I also look at how some 20th century artists have engaged with these new ideas. I see generally two responses to the postmodern (post-subject) position: that of a play of surfaces, such as in the work of Andy Warhol and the philosophy of Jean Baudrillard; and that of an embracing of absence, presented in the philosophy of Martin Heidegger and the works of such artists as John Cage, George Brecht, Pauline Oliveros, Bill Wegman, David Hammons and others.
Date: August 2003
Creator: McMullen, Tracy
Partner: UNT Libraries

Now All the Fingers of This Tree

Description: Now All the Fingers of This Tree is a work in two movements based upon a poem of the same name by E. E. Cummings. It is divided into two movements: The first movement is scored for nine part solo soprano, where one performer records each of the nine vocal lines. The second movement is an electro-acoustic work derived from four phrases of the original recording of the first movement. Total duration of the work is approximately 19 minutes. The paper provides a detailed analysis of both movements as well as a discussion on usage of text, problems addressed with traditional notation techniques, and technology utilized in the production of the work.
Date: May 2003
Creator: Wood, Kelly Thomas
Partner: UNT Libraries

Source-bonding as a Variable in Electroacoustic Composition: Faktura and Acoustics in Understatements

Description: Understatements for two-channel fixed media is a four-movement study of the sonic potential of acoustic instruments within the practice of electroacoustic studio composition. The musical identity of the entire composition is achieved through consistent approaches to disparate instrumental materials and a focused investigation of the relationships between the various acoustic timbres and their electroacoustic treatments. The analytical section of this paper builds on contemporary research in electroacoustic arts. The analysis of the work is preceded by a summary of theoretical and aesthetic approaches within electroacoustic composition and the introduction of primary criteria of sonic faktura (material essence) used in the compositional process. The analyses address the idiosyncratic use of the concept of faktura to contextualize and guide the unfolding of the work. The reconciliation of the illusory electronic textures and the acoustic sources that parented them may be considered the ultimate goal of Understatements.
Date: December 2010
Creator: Rostovtsev, Ilya Y.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Something About Marybell

Description: Something About Marybell is a children's book with audio compact disk, in which I combined three art forms: storytelling, illustrating, and music composition. The nature of the story reflects my love of animals, which has been the essence of all my previous works as well. Beyond the technical matters I practiced and obstacles I encountered while working on each of the aforementioned art forms, the most important point I discovered was that all three were consistently interrelated, and I never could develop one medium without considering the others. Working on this project also was a journey to trace my major influences in different subjects. My drawing style is influenced by cartoons and animation films, which are now considered significant artistic styles in Japanese subculture. My music composition reflects a broad influence from many composers' works working in a variety of genres, especially piano works, of all eras. There are two specific works I studied as model works for this project: Poulenc's L'Histoire de Babar le petit éléphant (The Story of Babar the Little Elephant) and Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf. It was a challenge to blend one stylistic approach into another to accurately realize my musical conception.
Date: May 2008
Creator: Yonemaru, Tomoko
Partner: UNT Libraries

Syncretisms for wind quintet and percussion: A study in combining organizational principles from Southeast Asian music with western stylistic elements.

Description: Syncretisms is an original composition scored for flute, oboe, clarinet, horn, bassoon, and marimba (2-mallet minimum, 4 recommended) with an optional percussion part requiring glockenspiel and chimes, and has an approximate duration of 6 min. 45. sec. The composition combines modern western tuning, timbre, and harmonic language with organizational principles identified in music from Southeast Asia (including music from cultures found in Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia, and Indonesia). The accompanying paper describes each of these organizational principles, drawing on the work of scholars who have performed fieldwork, and describes the way in which each principle was employed in Syncretisms. The conclusion speculates on a method for comparing musical organizational systems cross-culturally.
Date: May 2008
Creator: Seymour, John
Partner: UNT Libraries