Selected Russian classical romances and traditional songs for young singers: Introductory materials with teaching strategies
The purpose of this research is to assemble a collection of Russian Art song repertoire selected for beginner level training, with an exposition of the criteria for their appropriateness as teaching pieces. This examination defines the scope of vocal, technical, language and interpretive abilities required for the performance of Russian Art song literature. It also establishes the need for a pedagogical approach that is free from Eurocentric cultural biases against Russian language and culture. Intended as a reference for teachers and students to simplify the introduction of Russian Art song into the repertoire of the advanced secondary or beginning undergraduate student, it includes a discussion of learning priorities and challenges particular to native English speakers relative to successful Russian language lyric diction assimilation, with solutions. This study is designed to furnish material for a published edition of songs in the appropriate transpositions for high, medium and low voice including word-for- word and sense translations with IPA transcriptions, along with program notes for each piece. Repertoire is selected from the works of Alyab'yev, Gurilyov, Varlamov, Glinka, Dargomyzhsky, Tchaikovsky and Mussorgsky, as well as a few folk songs. The repertoire is grouped by difficulty and accompanied by English translations, interpretive analyses of the Russian Language poetry, and International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) transcriptions modified for lyric diction. The degrees of difficulty are determined by vocal registration demands, word lengths and rhythmical text setting, as well as the incidences of unfamiliar phonological processes and complex consonant clusters occurring in the text. A scope and sequence chart is included, supplemented with learning objectives and teaching strategies, which organizes the repertoire according the order in which the pieces are to be taught. A palatalization guide is provided, to provide solutions for common pronunciation problems. Included in the appendices are listings of additional recommended Russian art song titles and recommended listening and viewing.