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The focus of this in-depth study is to look at the gestation, performance history, and reception of Giacomo Puccini's evening of three one-act operas called Il Trittico and differentiate the particular components, Il Tabarro, Suor Angelica, and Gianni Schicchi to analyze them for their individual stylistic elements of Italian Opera. These were the styles of verismo, pathos and sentimentality, and opera buffa. As substantiated by written criticism, the audience and the critics did not fully comprehend the hidden meaning behind the individual works of Il Trittico. Puccini, enigmatically, had chosen to present one last glimpse of outmoded Italian operatic traditions. In order to evaluate Il Trittico's importance in the history of Italian opera, this study will first review the musically changing landscape in Italy during the early to mid-nineteenth century, then the second part of the nineteenth and beginning of the twentieth-century when German, French, and eventually Russian music were starting to influence audience taste. Puccini who, over the course of his compositional life, absorbed and incorporated these different styles realized that long held Italian operatic tradition had reached a fork in the road. One path would ensure Italian composers a place in this new order and the other a stagnant dead end.
Even though Puccini's triptych garnered primarily negative reviews, the basis for this negativity was the perception that Il Trittico had broken with the historically traditional Italian musical styles. Though the present study acknowledges that break to a degree, it will also present a historically based rationale for the deviation, one left largely unnoticed by Puccini's critics. In the end, this author plans to realize their symbolic importance as a farewell to three uniquely Italian styles and a departure point for a new operatic tradition. Looking forward to the centenary of the work, this author seeks to illuminate how Puccini reached the pinnacle of firmly rooted genres of Italian opera. Ultimately this might help to unravel the enigma of Il Trittico while it continues to secure its rightful place as one of the masterpieces of the Puccini canon.
Department chairs or school directors, as the bridge between administration and faculty, and closely associated with the teaching and learning at the heart of the institution, hold very important roles in the departments or schools they oversee. Many chairs and department administrators in music schools and departments are selected from the faculty of the department and asked to serve as the chief administrator. They assume a set of duties that, to that point, have been beyond the purview of their academic training and professional experience--particularly for those with training in the performance disciplines. While usually successful as teachers, these new chairs and department heads face a difficult transition into administrative work because the skills required for an effective administrator are very different from those necessary to be an effective teacher.
The purpose of this research was to ascertain the knowledge and skills that would be most practical for individuals aspiring to administrative or leadership roles in schools or departments of music, and to design a doctoral cognate that would supply that knowledge. The author reviewed the available research into administrative training for individuals pursuing administrative work in schools and departments of music. Interviews were then conducted with current or former music administrators from across the United States, inquiring about their experiences as administrators, any administrative training they received, and the types of things they wished they had known when first working in an administrative capacity. The author used this information to make recommendations concerning the creation of a doctoral cognate in administration for graduate students preparing to become music faculty so that they are equipped to undertake administrative responsibilities.
The resulting cognate area consists of four courses: a course in finance, budgeting, and development; a course on organizational structure and behavior; a course on management and leadership theory; and a practicum or independent study in administration, in which students spend time observing and shadowing their department administrator(s) to apply the principles learned in the previous three courses.
An analysis of selected piano solo works inspired by Biblical references: William Bergsma and Louis Weingarden
Biblical references play an important role in traditional programmatic music. Composers such as Kuhnau, Haydn, Liszt, Messiaen, and Bolcom produced considerable amounts of piano repertoire with biblical allusions: Musical Presentations of Some Biblical Stories in 6 Sonatas (1700) by Kuhnau, The Seven Last Words from Our Saviour on the Cross (1787) by Haydn, The Way of Cross (1878-1879) by Liszt, Twenty Contemplations on the Infant Jesus (1944) by Messiaen, and The Garden of Eden: Four Rags for Piano (1969) by Bolcom. The twentieth century American composers William Bergsma and Louis Weingarden participated in this tradition by producing piano pieces that contain direct biblical quotations. These works, which have received little attention, include two movements from Tangents (1951) by Bergsma and Triptych: Three Pieces for Piano (1969) by Weingarden.
This paper provides a comprehensive analysis of these piano works, considering structural, rhythmic, harmonic, and melodic elements. In particular, the paper examines Bergsma and Weingarden’s work through the technique of word painting in order to illuminate the relationship between the biblical text and music. Key findings include that Bergsma’s Tangents contains dissonant harmonies and irregular rhythms to reflect the agony of people on the biblical Judgement day, while the use of tonality reflects God’s love in other parts. Similarly, Weingarden uses an illustrative style of word painting in Triptych to closely reflect this biblical narrative and scene through the combination of some twelve-tone techniques with chromaticism. These works present a high degree of pianistic and musical elaboration that incorporates twentieth-century compositional techniques, and this paper argues that they merit more attention for recitals by college-level and professional pianists. This paper begins with an introduction which provides the methodological approach used in the paper and a biography of each composer. It then progresses to an analysis of Bergsma’s Tangents, followed by an analysis of Weingarden’s Triptych.
Negotiating music and politics: John Cage's United States bicentennial compositions "Lecture on the Weather" and "Renga with Apartment House 1776
In 1975 the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) invited John Cage to write a composition for the bicentennial birthday of the United States. The result was Lecture on the Weather, a multi-media work for twelve expatriate vocalists and/or players with independent sound systems, magnetic tape, and film. Cage used texts by Henry David Thoreau, recordings of environmental sounds made by American composer Maryanne Amacher and a nature-inspired film by Chilean visual artist Luis Frangella. The composition opens with a spoken Preface and is arguably one of Cage’s most overtly political pieces. A year later the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA) and six major United States orchestras commissioned Cage to compose another work commemorating the United States bicentennial of the American Revolution. In response, he created Renga with Apartment House 1776, which follows his concept of a “music circus,” or simply, a musical composition with a multiplicity of events occurring simultaneously. Scored for voices, instrumental soloists and quartets, Renga with Apartment House is a multi-faceted work marked by layers of American hymns and folk tunes.
Cage’s United States Bicentennial compositions – and his other pieces created in the 1970s and 1980s – have received little attention from music scholars. Unique and provocative works within his oeuvre, these compositions raise many questions. Why was Cage commissioned to write these works? How did Cage pay tribute to this celebratory event in American history? What socio–political meanings are implied in these pieces? In this thesis I will provide political, cultural, and biographical contexts of these works. I will further examine their genesis, analyze their scores and selected performances, reflect on their meaning and critical implications and consider the reception of these works. My research draws on unpublished documents housed in the CBC’s archives at McGill University, the archives of C. F. Peters, the New York Public Library and it builds on research of such scholars as David W. Bernstein, William Brooks, Benjamin Piekut, and Christopher Shultis. This thesis offers new information and perspectives on Cage’s creative work in the 1970s and aims at filling a significant gap in Cage scholarship.
In the 1930s, with the rise of Nazism, many artists in Europe had to flee their homelands and sought refuge in the United States. Austrian composer Hanns Eisler who had risen to prominence as a significant composer during the Weimar era was among them. A Jew, an ardent Marxist and composer devoted to musical modernism, he had established himself as a writer of film music and Kampflieder, fighting songs, for the European workers' movement. After two visits of the United States in the mid-1930s, Eisler settled in America where he spent a decade (1938-1948), composed a considerable number of musical works, including important film scores, instrumental music and songs, and, in collaboration with Theodor W. Adorno, penned the influential treatise Composing for the Films. Yet despite his substantial contributions to American culture American scholarship on Eisler has remained sparse, perhaps due to his reputation as the "Karl Marx in Music." In this study I examine Eisler's American exile and argue that Eisler, through his roles as a musician and a teacher, actively sought to enrich American culture. I will present background for his exile years, a detailed overview of his American career as well as analyses and close readings of several of his American works, including three of his American film scores, Pete Roleum and His Cousins (1939), Hangmen Also Die (1943), and None But the Lonely Heart (1944), and the String Quartet (1940), Third Piano Sonata (1943), Woodbury Liederbüchlein (1941), and Hollywood Songbook (1942-7). This thesis builds upon unpublished correspondence and documents available only in special collections at the University of Southern California (USC), as well as film scores in archives at USC and the University of California, Los Angeles. It also draws on Eisler studies by such European scholars as Albrecht Betz, Jürgen Schebera, and Horst Weber, as well as on research of film music scholars Sally Bick and Claudia Gorbman. As there is little written on the particulars of Eisler's American years, this thesis presents new facts and new perspectives and aims at a better understanding of the artistic achievements of this composer.
The study of acoustic ecology is concerned with the manner in which life interacts with its environment as mediated through sound. As such, a central focus is that of the soundscape: the acoustic environment as perceived by a listener. This dissertation examines the application of several computational tools in the realms of digital signal processing, multimedia information retrieval, and computer music synthesis to the analysis of the soundscape. Namely, these tools include a) an open source software library, Sirens, which can be used for the segmentation of long environmental field recordings into individual sonic events and compare these events in terms of acoustic content, b) a graph-based retrieval system that can use these measures of acoustic similarity and measures of semantic similarity using the lexical database WordNet to perform both text-based retrieval and automatic annotation of environmental sounds, and c) new techniques for the dynamic, realtime parametric morphing of multiple field recordings, informed by the geographic paths along which they were recorded.
The collegiate vocal jazz ensemble: an historical and current perspective on the development, current state, and future direction of the genre
The Vocal Jazz ensemble, a uniquely American choral form, has grown and flourished in the past half century largely through the efforts of professionals and educators throughout the collegiate music community. This document provides historical data as presented through live and published interviews with key individuals involved in the early development of collegiate Vocal Jazz, as well as those who continue this effort currently. It also offers a study of the most influential creative forces that provided the spark for everyone else's fire. A frank discussion on the obstacles encountered and overcome is central to the overall theme of this research into a genre that has moved from a marginalized afterthought to a legitimate, more widely accepted art form. In addition to the perspective provided to future generations of educators in this field, this document also discusses the role of collegiate music academia in preserving and promoting the Vocal Jazz ensemble. The discussion relies on recent data showing the benefits of Vocal Jazz training and the need for authenticity towards its universal integration into college and university vocal performance and music education training.
Christopher Caliendo is a guitarist/composer who has written for a variety of performance mediums. His works been performed on international concert stages and recorded for film and television media. His compositions have garnered him the Henry Mancini Award for Film Composition, the Artin Arslanian Scholarship for Humanities, and the Peabody Grant for Scholarship. He has also received two commissions from the Vatican in 1992 and 1995. In 1988, he received an Emmy nomination for his work with the television series Paradise. The purpose of this project is to present a study of selected clarinet works by Christopher Caliendo: The Tango Concerto No. 1 is a three-movement work that Caliendo arranged for clarinet and piano in 2010, The Little Gypsy was written for solo clarinet, and Jal, Ven a mis Brazos, Amanacer, La Milonga, Acariciame, Amor Perdido, Caliente, Impulso, and Passione comprise a series of nine guitar/clarinet duos that were composed or arranged between 2009 and 2010. The document is comprised of a brief description of the career and compositions of Christopher Caliendo, a performer's guide to the selected works, a track listing for the performance recording, and a list of Caliendo's other clarinet and chamber music compositions that are intended for the concert stage. It is the hope of the author that this project can generate more interest in Christopher Caliendo's clarinet repertoire throughout the clarinet community.
This study investigates ways in which music teachers make personal sense of their professional selves and their perceptions of their places within the broader landscape of music education relative to other types of music teachers in school and community settings. A social phenomenological framework based on the writing of Alfred Schutz was used to examine how participants constructed a sense of self in their social worlds and how they both shaped and were shaped by their social worlds. Eight music teachers participated in this study and represented differing types of music teaching careers, including: public school general music teaching and ensemble directing; independent studio teaching and teaching artistry; studio lessons, classes, and ensembles at community music centers; church ensemble directing; and other combinations of music teaching jobs throughout school and community settings. Data were collected from in-depth interviews, observations of the music teachers in their various teaching roles, and artifacts related to their music teaching positions. Research questions included: Who do the participants conceive of themselves to be as music professionals and music teachers; How do they construct and enact their professional selves, including their teaching selves; How is their construction of professional self, including teaching self, supported and sustained by interactions in their social worlds; and, What implications does this have for the music profession as a whole? After developing a professional portrait of each participant, analysis revealed an overall sense of professional self and various degrees of three role-taking selves: performing, teaching, and musical. Analysis also considered sense of self in relation to social worlds, including consociates, contemporaries, predecessors, and successors, and the extent to which performing, teaching, and musical selves were balanced, harmonized, or reconciled for each participant. Social worlds proved influential in terms of participants' support for sense of self. Participants who enacted the most harmonized, reconciled senses of self appeared to have a professional self that was grounded in a strong sense of musical self, enabling them to think and act flexibly. Participants whose professional selves were dominated by a strong sense of teaching or performing self seemed confined by the structures of their social world particular to teaching or performing, lacked a sense of musical self, and were less able to think and act flexibly. Findings suggest that active construction of consociate relationships throughout varied social worlds can support a balanced, reconciled conception of self, which informs teaching practice and furthers the ability to act in entrepreneurial ways.
Musikalischer Parnassus by Johann Kaspar Ferdinand Fischer (1656-1746): guitar transcription and performance guide of Suites VI and VIII
Guitar repertoire from the Baroque period consists primarily of transcriptions, which suggests that modern performers may explore more sources to identify eligible works to transcribe. The Musikalischer Parnassus, a collection of dance suites for harpsichord by Johann Kaspar Ferdinand Fischer (1656-1746), is worthy of such a transcription. This collection has high artistic value and possesses a range and texture that make much of it playable on the guitar. The purpose of this research project is to introduce Fischer and his works to the classical guitar community, and also to explore the artistic qualities of Musikalischer Parnassus that qualify it for transcription for guitar. This document addresses the transcription process of two selected suites: VI, Euterpe and VIII, Polymnia by Fischer. The outcome is an edition for guitar and a performance guide, which includes interpretations and stylistic considerations for each movement.