Matching Items (18)

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De Oriendo

Description

De Oriendo is a project devoted to a better understanding of the word "original" as it pertains to musical composition. It began as a way for me to try to

De Oriendo is a project devoted to a better understanding of the word "original" as it pertains to musical composition. It began as a way for me to try to tackle a twofold fascination that has been with me for the duration of my time at ASU, though I have not always been aware of it. The first half of this fascination is an enduring interest in tracing borrowed material used by composers and other artists throughout history. It seems that almost every research project I have undertaken in the last four years has had something to do with this concept. Scholars like Winton Dean, J. Peter Burkholder, and Sigmund Spaeth have spent parts of their careers charting out the genealogy of historical compositions, uncovering reused melodies and harmonic progressions in the process; the cases of it are countless, even among the most identifiable composers and songwriters. Since there is scholarship clearly demonstrating secondhand ideas in music, it becomes problematic to assume that the word "original" simply describes something completely new, that is, something that does not use material heard or seen before. The second half is more of a personal ambition: I thought that if I truly knew what composers and critics meant when they labeled a piece or an artist as original, then I could somehow find a way to achieve this distinction in my own attempts at composition and avoid that uninteresting, derivative sound I have always feared.

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Date Created
  • 2012-12

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Bright summer: for orchestra

Description

Bright Summer, a one-movement piece for orchestra, was composed in Arizona, and completed in February 2013. The piece is approximately twelve minutes long. The motivation for writing this piece was

Bright Summer, a one-movement piece for orchestra, was composed in Arizona, and completed in February 2013. The piece is approximately twelve minutes long. The motivation for writing this piece was the death of my mother the year before, in 2012. The prevailing mood of this work is bright and pleasant, expressing my mother's cheerful personality when she was alive. It also portrays bright summer days which resemble my mother's spirit. Thus, soundscape plays an important role in this work. It depicts summer breeze, rustling sounds of leaves, and, to translate a Korean saying, "high blue skies." This soundscape opens the piece as well as closes it. In the middle section, the fast upbeat themes represent my mother's witty and optimistic personality. The piece also contains the presence of a hymn tune, The Love of God is Greater Far, which informs the motivic content and also functions as the climax of the piece. It was my mother's favorite hymn and we used to sing it together following her conversion to Christianity. The piece contains three main sections, which are held together by transitional material based on the soundscape and metric modulations. Unlike my earlier works, Bright Summer is tonal, with upper tertian harmonies prevailing throughout the piece. However, the opening and closing soundscapes do not have functional harmonies. For example, tertian chords appear and vanish silently, leaving behind some resonant sounds without any harmonic progression. Overall, the whole piece is reminiscent of my mother who lived a beautiful life.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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They called me an alien: Hanns Eisler's American years, 1935-1948

Description

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

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.

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Date Created
  • 2013

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An examination on the influences and establishment of Chopin's personal style through the comparative analysis of his concertos and Hummel's A and B minor concertos

Description

This study compares the Hummel Concertos in A Minor, Op. 85 and B Minor, Op. 89 and the Chopin Concertos in E Minor, Op. 11 and F Minor, Op. 21.

This study compares the Hummel Concertos in A Minor, Op. 85 and B Minor, Op. 89 and the Chopin Concertos in E Minor, Op. 11 and F Minor, Op. 21. On initial hearing of Hummel's rarely played concertos, one immediately detects similarities with Chopin's concerto style. Upon closer examination, one discovers a substantial number of interesting and significant parallels with Chopin's concertos, many of which are highlighted in this research project. Hummel belongs to a generation of composers who made a shift away from the Classical style, and Chopin, as an early Romantic, absorbed much from his immediate predecessors in establishing his highly unique style. I have chosen to focus on Chopin's concertos to demonstrate this association. The essay begins with a discussion of the historical background of Chopin's formative years as it pertains to the formation of his compositional style, Hummel's role and influence in the contemporary musical arena, as well as interactions between the two composers. It then provides the historical background of the aforementioned concertos leading to a comparative analysis, which includes structural, melodic, harmonic, and motivic parallels. With a better understanding of his stylistic influences, and of how Chopin assimilated them in the creation of his masterful works, the performer can adopt a more informed approach to the interpretation of these two concertos, which are among the most beloved masterpieces in piano literature.

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Date Created
  • 2013

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An analysis of the Concerto for bassoon and orchestra by Nino Rota

Description

Nino Rota was a prolific composer of twentieth-century film and concert music, including the Concerto for bassoon and orchestra in b-flat major. Composing over 150 film scores for directors such

Nino Rota was a prolific composer of twentieth-century film and concert music, including the Concerto for bassoon and orchestra in b-flat major. Composing over 150 film scores for directors such as Federico Fellini, Francis Ford Coppola, Henry Cass, King Vidor and Franco Zeffirelli, Rota received distinguished acclaim from several film institutions, professional film reviewers and film music experts for his contributions to the art form. Rota also composed a great deal of diverse repertoire for the concert stage (ballet, opera, incidental music, concerti, symphonies, as well as several chamber works). The purpose of this analysis is to emphasize the expressive charm and accessibility of his concerto in the bassoon repertoire. The matter of this analysis of the Concerto for bassoon and orchestra concentrates on a single concerto from his concert repertoire completed in 1977, two years before Rota's death. The discussion includes a brief introduction to Nino Rota and his accomplishments as a musician and film composer, and a detailed outline of the motivic and structural events of contained in each movement of the concerto. The shape of the work is analyzed both in detailed discussion and by the use of charts, including reduced score figures of excerpts of the piece, which illustrate significant thematic events and relationships. The analysis reveals how Rota uses lyrical thematic material in a consistently, and he develops the music by creating melodic sequences and varied repetitions of thematic material. He is comfortable writing several forms, as indicated by the first movement, Toccata - a sonata-type form; the second movement, Recitativo, opening with a cadenza and followed by a theme and brief development; and the third movement, a theme (Andantino) and set of six variations. Rota's writing also includes contrapuntal techniques such as imitation, inversion, retrograde and augmentation, all creating expressive interest during thematic development. It is clear from the discussion that Rota is an accomplished, well-studied and lyrical composer. This analysis will inform the bassoonist and conductor, and aid in developing a fondness for the Concerto for bassoon and orchestra and perhaps other concert works.

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Date Created
  • 2012

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Two poems of the Song Dynasty: for soprano and orchestra, 2012

Description

TWO POEMS OF THE SONG DYNASTY is an original composition for soprano voice and orchestra. The duration of this two-movement work is approximately 10 minutes. The instrumentation is: Flute 1,

TWO POEMS OF THE SONG DYNASTY is an original composition for soprano voice and orchestra. The duration of this two-movement work is approximately 10 minutes. The instrumentation is: Flute 1, 2, Oboe 1, 2 (doubling English Horn), Clarinet in Bb 1-2, Bassoon 1-2, Trumpet in Bb 1-3, Horn in F 1 - 4, Tenor Trombone 1-2 , Bass Trombone, Tuba, Timpani, Vibraphone, Cymbals, Triangle and Strings. This piece is of moderate difficulty; to be sung in Chinese with elements of sprechstimme and a vocal range from C4 to A5. The two movements, "Sheng Sheng Man" and "Yong Yu Le" refer to old poetic forms from the Song Dynasty (1127-1279). The poets Li Qingzhao and Xin Qiji provide contrasting laments for the wars of their time; the first is an introverted metaphor of sorrow and the second is a more explicit recollection of old times.

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Date Created
  • 2012

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An analytical overview of Dominick Argento's Evensong, of love and angels

Description

Many of the works of Dominick Argento have been researched and analyzed, but his choral work Evensong: Of Love and Angels s has received limited attention thus far. Written in

Many of the works of Dominick Argento have been researched and analyzed, but his choral work Evensong: Of Love and Angels s has received limited attention thus far. Written in memoriam for his wife Carolyn Bailey Argento, Evensong draws its musical material from her initials C.B.A. These letters, translated into note names, form a conspicuous head motive that is present in each movement of the work, and it serves multiple functions: as a melodic feature, as the foundation for a twelve-tone row, and as a harmonic base. This paper provides an overview of the work's conception with specific relation to Argento's biographical details, compositional style, and work habits; a brief review of the critical reception of the work; and a succinct analysis of the form and cyclical materials found in each movement.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2011

Musikalischer Parnassus by Johann Kaspar Ferdinand Fischer (1656-1746): guitar transcription and performance guide of Suites VI and VIII

Description

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

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.

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Date Created
  • 2013