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Once On This Island - An Exploration of Nontraditional Casting

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Only in the world of acting can an individual be denied a job simply on the basis of their appearance, and in my thesis, I sought to explore alternatives to this through the concept of nontraditional casting and casting against

Only in the world of acting can an individual be denied a job simply on the basis of their appearance, and in my thesis, I sought to explore alternatives to this through the concept of nontraditional casting and casting against "type", which included the presentation of a full-length production of the musical "Once on this Island" which I attempted to cast based on vocal quality and skill alone rather than taking physical characteristics into account. I researched the history and implementation of nontraditional casting, both in regards to race and other factors such as gender, socio-economic status, and disability. I also considered the legal and intellectual property challenges that nontraditional casting can pose. I concluded from this research that while nontraditional casting is only one solution to the problem, it still has a great deal of potential to create diversity in theater. For my own show, I held the initial auditions via audio recording, though the callback auditions were held in person so that I and my crew could appraise dance and acting ability. Though there were many challenges with our cast after this initial round of auditions, we were able to solidify our cast and continue through the rehearsal process. All things said, the show was very successful. It is my hope that those who were a part of the show, either as part of the production or the audience, are inspired to challenge the concept of typecasting in contemporary theater.

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2014-12

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Musical Guidance towards Immortality by the Greek Muses by Inspiring Awareness of Being-in-the-World as Understood through the Philosophy of Martin Heidegger

Description

For the ancient Greeks, music not only was esteemed for its social and entertaining value, but also because it reflected the beauty of the gods and their creations. Music furthermore “embodied larger universal principles and served as a vehicle for

For the ancient Greeks, music not only was esteemed for its social and entertaining value, but also because it reflected the beauty of the gods and their creations. Music furthermore “embodied larger universal principles and served as a vehicle for higher understanding.” According to Lippmann, the ancients believed that the universe “contains a harmony that controls both spatial and temporal phenomena” and “we can come to know the divine order of harmony more readily in ourselves than in the external world.” Gaining self-knowledge and awareness of one’s place in the world are significant and music is a means of gaining this consciousness. Ancient Greeks believed that music was inspired by the Greek goddesses known as the Muses. In this paper, I argue that, by gifting humans with divinely inspired music, the Muses help humans achieve this mindfulness of one‟s place in the world and attain immortality.

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2012-12

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The ensemble étude for violins: an examination with an annotated survey of violin trios and quartets and an original étude for four violins

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ABSTRACT &eacutetudes; written for violin ensemble, which include violin duets, trios, and quartets, are less numerous than solo &eacutetudes.; These works rarely go by the title "&eacutetude;," and have not been the focus of much scholarly

ABSTRACT &eacutetudes; written for violin ensemble, which include violin duets, trios, and quartets, are less numerous than solo &eacutetudes.; These works rarely go by the title "&eacutetude;," and have not been the focus of much scholarly research. Ensemble &eacutetudes; have much to offer students, teachers and composers, however, because they add an extra dimension to the learning, teaching, and composing processes. This document establishes the value of ensemble &eacutetudes; in pedagogy and explores applications of the repertoire currently available. Rather than focus on violin duets, the most common form of ensemble &eacutetude;, it mainly considers works for three and four violins without accompaniment. Concentrating on the pedagogical possibilities of studying &eacutetudes; in a group, this document introduces creative ways that works for violin ensemble can be used as both &eacutetudes; and performance pieces. The first two chapters explore the history and philosophy of the violin &eacutetude; and multiple-violin works, the practice of arranging of solo &eacutetudes; for multiple instruments, and the benefits of group learning and cooperative learning that distinguish ensemble &eacutetude; study from solo &eacutetude; study. The third chapter is an annotated survey of works for three and four violins without accompaniment, and serves as a pedagogical guide to some of the available repertoire. Representing a wide variety of styles, techniques and levels, it illuminates an historical association between violin ensemble works and pedagogy. The fourth chapter presents an original composition by the author, titled Variations on a Scottish Folk Song: &eacutetude; for Four Violins, with an explanation of the process and techniques used to create this ensemble &eacutetude.; This work is an example of the musical and technical integration essential to &eacutetude; study, and demonstrates various compositional traits that promote cooperative learning. Ensemble &eacutetudes; are valuable pedagogical tools that deserve wider exposure. It is my hope that the information and ideas about ensemble &eacutetudes; in this paper and the individual descriptions of the works presented will increase interest in and application of violin trios and quartets at the university level.

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2011

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Geechie Wiley: an exploration of enigmatic virtuosity

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The name of Geechie Wiley has surfaced only rarely since 1931, when she recorded her second session with the Paramount Company in Grafton, WI. A few scholars including Paul Oliver and Greil Marcus unearthed and promoted her music and called

The name of Geechie Wiley has surfaced only rarely since 1931, when she recorded her second session with the Paramount Company in Grafton, WI. A few scholars including Paul Oliver and Greil Marcus unearthed and promoted her music and called for further research on this enigmatic figure. In other publications, Wiley is frequently given only passing mention in long lists of talented female blues singer-guitarists, or briefly discussed in descriptions of songsters. Her music is lauded in the liner notes of the myriad compilation albums that have re-released her recordings. However, prior to this study, Marcus's three-page profile is the longest work written about Wiley; other contributions range between one sentence and two paragraphs in length. None really answers the question: who was Geechie Wiley? This thesis begins by documenting my attempt to piece together all information presently available on Geechie Wiley. A biographical chapter, supplemented with a discussion of the blues songster, follows. I then discuss my methodology and philosophy for transcription. This is followed by a critical and comparative analysis of the recordings, using the transcriptions as supplements. Finally, my fifth chapter presents conclusions about Wiley's life, career, and disappearance. My transcriptions of Wiley's six songs are found in the first appendix. Reproductions of Paramount Records advertisements are located in the final appendix. In these ways, this thesis argues that Wiley's work traces the transformation of African-American music from the general secular music of the songsters to the iconic blues genre.

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Date Created
2011

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The compositional styles of Alfredo Casella: an examination of four vocal works

Description

This paper and its accompanying recital examine three solo vocal works by Italian composer Alfredo Casella (1883-1947): "Larmes" from Cinq Mélodies (Op. 2); "Mort, ta servante est à ma porte" from L'adieu à la vie: Quatre lyriques funèbres extraites du

This paper and its accompanying recital examine three solo vocal works by Italian composer Alfredo Casella (1883-1947): "Larmes" from Cinq Mélodies (Op. 2); "Mort, ta servante est à ma porte" from L'adieu à la vie: Quatre lyriques funèbres extraites du "Gitanjali" de Rabindranath Tagore (Op. 26); and "Amante sono, vaghiccia, di voi" from Tre canzoni trecentesche (Op. 36). Each of these songs is discussed as representative of Casella's three compositional periods. A fourth song, "Ecce odor filii mei" from Tre canti sacri per baritono et organo (Op. 66), is also examined, as an end-of-life composition. Some of the more important solo vocal works composed in each period are mentioned to show where the four selected songs fit into Casella's compositional output and to suggest music for further study or repertoire.

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2014

A performer's perspective on double clarinet music: pieces by William O. Smith, Eric Mandat, and Jody Rockmaker with interviews and a recording

Description

This final research paper provides both a performer's perspective and a recording of double clarinet literature by William O. Smith (b. 1926), Eric Mandat (b. 1957), and Jody Rockmaker (b. 1961). The document includes musical examples, references to the recording,

This final research paper provides both a performer's perspective and a recording of double clarinet literature by William O. Smith (b. 1926), Eric Mandat (b. 1957), and Jody Rockmaker (b. 1961). The document includes musical examples, references to the recording, and interviews with the composers. The first chapter contains a brief literature review of sources on world double clarinets, biographies of the above-mentioned composers, and other pertinent information. Chapters 2-4 include the performer's perspective on the following works: Epitaphs for Double Clarinet by William O. Smith, Double Life for Solo Clarinet by Eric Mandat, and two compositions by Jody Rockmaker, Half and Half for demi-clarinet in A, and Double Dip. The final chapter examines how double clarinet music has evolved, the challenges and limitations of the repertoire, and the future of the double clarinet genre.

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Date Created
2013

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Benjamin Britten: composer as conductor and the art of self interpretation

Description

In the triumvirate of composer-performer-listener, while the listener always wins, the performer is the interpreter through which the listener experiences the writings of the composer. When the composer and performer are combined, however, a unique situation arises: the link from

In the triumvirate of composer-performer-listener, while the listener always wins, the performer is the interpreter through which the listener experiences the writings of the composer. When the composer and performer are combined, however, a unique situation arises: the link from the composer to the listener becomes a direct line and the composer becomes his/her own interpreter. Such is the case with Benjamin Britten. Britten conducted almost his entire repertoire in recordings for Decca (the exceptions being Paul Bunyan, Owen Wingrave, and Death in Venice). A comparative analysis of the recordings of four of Britten's works, the Serenade for Tenor, Horn, and Strings, Op. 31; Albert Herring, Op. 39; Spring Symphony, Op. 44; and the Nocturne, Op. 60, shows that despite his complaints about performers not following his tempo markings, Britten often deviated from them himself, tending slower. Britten also occasionally added additional rubato, ritardandi, and accelerandi to his works. Additionally, a discrepancy regarding a pitch in the "Prelude" of the Serenade comes to light. Video of Britten conducting the Nocturne in rehearsal with the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) Vancouver provides additional insight into his methodology. Benjamin Britten succeeded as a composer-conductor, and his catalogue of recordings provides essential primary reference material when studying his works.

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Date Created
2014

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Marketing in music therapy: a survey of self-employed music therapists to identify methods of marketing planning, positioning, promotion, and implementation

Description

ABSTRACT A survey of board-certified music therapists who identified themselves as self-employed was conducted to examine current methods of marketing related to planning, positioning, promotion, and implementation within a music therapy private practice or contracting model, as well as identify

ABSTRACT A survey of board-certified music therapists who identified themselves as self-employed was conducted to examine current methods of marketing related to planning, positioning, promotion, and implementation within a music therapy private practice or contracting model, as well as identify trends in marketing methods as compared to prior research. Respondents (n=273) provided data via online survey as to current marketing practices, assessment of personal marketing skills, and views on marketing's overall role in their businesses. Historical, qualitative, and quantitative distinctions were developed through statistical analysis as to the relationship between respondents' views and current marketing practices. Results show that self-employed music therapists agree marketing is a vital part of their business and that creating a unique brand identity is necessary to differentiate oneself from the competition. A positive correlation was identified between those who are confident in their marketing skills and the dollar amount of rates charged for services. Presentations, websites, and networking were regarded as the top marketing vehicles currently used to garner new business, with a trend towards increased use of social media as a potential marketing avenue. Challenges for respondents appear to include the creation and implementation of written marketing plans and maintaining measurable marketing objectives. Barriers to implementation may include confidence in personal marketing skills, time required, and financial constraints. The majority of respondents agreed that taking an 8-hour CMTE course regarding marketing methods for self-employed music therapists would be beneficial.

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Date Created
2014

Windy City Opera's La Bohème: a case study of producing micro-opera in Chicago

Description

This research paper recounts the work done in founding an opera company and putting on its inaugural show. It also provides some of the insights acquired during the process, which may be helpful for other future opera producers in creating

This research paper recounts the work done in founding an opera company and putting on its inaugural show. It also provides some of the insights acquired during the process, which may be helpful for other future opera producers in creating a framework and guideposts for starting their own companies. The paper consists of two main sections followed by several short appendices.

The first section methodically reconstructs the process by which Windy City Opera's La Bohème was brought to the stage. It covers the background experiences that prompted the author to found her own company, the research and decisions involved, and the interplay between the company's overall goals and the resources available for a first production. The business, casting, rehearsing, and marketing aspects are reviewed in detail, as well as several mistakes that were made during the process that afforded valuable learning opportunities.

The second section follows up on these and other opportunities by sketching an ideal plan that opera startups might follow; the principal topics are timeline, budgeting, fundraising, venue selection, personnel selection, and marketing.

The appendices consist of worksheets and materials meant to illustrate and supplement this written how-to guide, as well as a video of the Windy City Opera production of La Bohème.

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2016

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Social media, marketing, and the opera singer

Description

ABSTRACT

This research is focused on technology in the arts, social media, and the opera singer. Topics include recent performance trends, social media, marketing techniques, and creating a successful brand. This paper also focuses on how to leverage social media platforms

ABSTRACT

This research is focused on technology in the arts, social media, and the opera singer. Topics include recent performance trends, social media, marketing techniques, and creating a successful brand. This paper also focuses on how to leverage social media platforms build a digital persona, and create an engaged audience. The same techniques used by corporations and opera companies for their social media and marketing strategy can be leveraged to increase brand awareness, build a strong network, and may aid in generating new opportunities for the opera singer.

Key Words: Social Media, Opera Singer, Branding, Marketing, Technology

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2016