FORMAL ANALYSIS AND INTRODUCTION TO 20th-CENTURY TECHNIQUES

FORMAL ANALYSIS AND INTRODUCTION TO 20th-CENTURY TECHNIQUES

MUSIC 302 – FORMAL ANALYSIS AND

INTRODUCTION TO 20th-CENTURY TECHNIQUES

 

Instructor: Huck Hodge | email: hhodge@uw.edu                             

TA: Daniel Webbon | email: danielwebbon@gmail.com

 

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

What is formal analysis and how is it different from a simple description of a piece of music? When we describe a piece of music we may identify its melodic and harmonic content, its meter, its key areas. However, analysis is something much richer than this. It is a practice by which we uncover deep relationships between these structures and examine how they dramatize the form, how they may heighten the expressive quality of the work.

In this course, we will often examine what composers do instead of the form as we know it from our textbooks. We will look at the ways that seemingly accidental events on the surface of the music spin out in a sort of ripple effect to influence the global structure, and the ways that large-scale relationships may be reflected in the moment-to-moment action of the music.    

In addition, we will examine the techniques that composers used in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to expand the expressive and formal possibilities of musical art.

           

EVALUATION

  1. Exercises and Analysis [45%] – Students will regularly be assigned specific exercises and analysis activities either from the textbook or the instructor in preparation for the lectures.  
  1. Quizzes [10%] – At various points in the quarter, quizzes will be given to evaluate comprehension and acquisition of specific skills and concepts. Listening identification of repertoire will also be assessed.
  1. Midterm [20%] A 6-page analytical paper on a work from the 18th through early 20th centuries. You may include musical excerpts, but you must have at least four pages of text. Include a 1-page formal diagram for a total of 6 pages.
  1. Final Project [25%] – A composition of roughly 3-5 minutes duration. Students may work in groups of 2 – 4 people, and all will be involved in the composition and performance of their pieces. The pieces must use many of the techniques covered in the second half of the course:

     Chordal planing

     Extended tertian harmonies

     Pandiatonicism

     Polytonality

     Irregular rhythms and meters

     Whole-tone, octatonic and various pentatonic scale collections

     Polymeter or polytempo

     Nonserial atonality

        

Each student is expected to do his/her own original work. Any plagiarism or other academic dishonesty will result in a grade of F for the course.

The scale for converting percentages to grade point scores can be found here.

 

ATTENDANCE POLICY

Regular attendance is mandatory. Good attendance behavior reflects a positive learning attitude that is beneficial for each individual and the entire class. Students who cannot attend class regularly and promptly will jeopardize their success in the class and are therefore advised not to take the course.

If class is missed, it is the responsibility of the student to obtain any missed information from others class members first, and then the instructor if necessary. Missed classes will not alter the due date for assignments, tests, and other class responsibilities. However, in the event of extended illness, every effort will be made to assist the student in completing the required course work whenever possible if it is determined feasible to do so.

 

Missed assignments and tests cannot be made up unless the student receives prior instructor approval or sufficient documentation is presented that verifies a substantial reason (e.g., emergency, extended illness, etc.).

 

COURSE SCHEDULE

The individual course sessions will be devoted to in-depth analysis and commentary on full pieces drawn from the course packet. YOU MUST BRING THESE SCORES TO EVERY CLASS SESSION. The instructor reserves the right to make changes to the course schedule and to amend the assigned homework at any time. In addition, students may be required to turn in exercises done in class.

 

FORMAL ANALYSIS OF TONAL MUSIC

 

Session 1 [3/28]: Ternary Forms

Repertoire: Mozart C minor String Quintet, Mvmt III

Read: Laitz, Chapter 25

 

Session 2 [3/30]: Ternary Forms

Repertoire: Beethoven, Symphony #9 Mvmt II

Read: Laitz, Chapter 25

 

Session 3 [4/4]: Ternary Forms

Repertoire: Beethoven, Symphony #9 Mvmt II

Read: Laitz, Chapter 26

  

Session 4 [4/6]: Sonata Form

Repertoire: Mozart, Violin Sonata in E minor K. 304

Read: Laitz, Chapter 26

HW: one Assignment chosen from 25.1 - 25.3 Due

 

Session 5 [4/11]: Sonata Form

Repertoire: Mozart, Violin Sonata in E minor K. 304

Read: Laitz, Chapter 26

 

Session 6 [4/13]: Fugue and Other Contrapuntal Genres

Repertoire: Bach, Well-Tempered Clavier, Book II: Fugue in C minor

Canons from A Musical Offering

HW: one Assignment chosen from 27.1 - 27.4 Due

 

Session 7 [4/18]: Fugue and Other Contrapuntal Genres

Repertoire: Bach, Well-Tempered Clavier, Book II: Fugue in C minor

Canons from A Musical Offering

HW: Handout

 

Session 8 [4/20]: Musical Structure in Songs

Repertoire: Schubert, Der Erlkönig

HW: Handout

 

Session 9 [4/25]: Musical Structure in Songs

Repertoire: Schubert, Der Erlkönig

Brahms, O Tod from Vier ernste Gesänge

Read: Chapter 31

HW: Handout

 

PRELUDE TO 20TH-CENTURY HARMONY

 

Session 10 [4/27]: At Tonality’s Edge (a postlude)

Repertoire: Wagner, Prelude to Tristan und Isolde, Liszt, Nuages Gris

Read: Chapter 31

HW: one Exercise chosen from Assignment 31.4 Due

 

Session 11 [5/2]: At Tonality’s Edge (a prelude)

Repertoire: Gesualdo, Moro Lasso, Weelkes, O Care Thou Wilt Dispatch Me

Read: Chapter 31

  • Midterm Paper Due —

 

Session 12 [5/4]: Pentatonic and Whole-Tone Collections | New Approaches to Voice-Leading

Repertoire: Debussy, The Sunken Cathedral

Read:  Kostka, Chapter 2

HW: Kostka: Ch 2: A5 (notate scales and mark intervals), B5 Due

 

Session 13 [5/9]: Pentatonic and Whole-Tone Collections | New Approaches to Voice-Leading

Repertoire: Debussy, The Sunken Cathedral

Read:  Kostka, Chapter 3

HW: Kostka: Ch 3: A2, A3 Due

 

THE EARLY 20TH CENTURY

 

Session 12 [5/11]: Stravinsky | Ballet and the New Medium of Film

Repertoire: Petruschka: At the Shrovetide Fair

Read:  Kostka, Chapter 4

 

Session 13 [5/16]: Stravinsky | Ballet and the New Medium of Film

Repertoire: Petruschka: At the Shrovetide Fair | Sacre du Printemps (I-II)

Read:  Kostka, Chapter 4

HW: Kostka, Ch 4 A2, B2 Due

 

Session 14 [5/18]: Stravinsky | Non-Developmental Form

Repertoire: Sacre du Printemps (I-II)

Read:  Kostka, Chapter 5

Stein

HW: Kostka, Ch 5 B7 Due

 

Session 15 [5/23]: Bartok | Form Reconsidered

Repertoire: Bartok, Music for Strings Percussion and Celeste (I)

Read:  Kostka, Chapter 6 (to page 129)

HW: Kostka, Ch 6 B5, C2 Due

 

Session 16 [5/25]: Bartok | Form Reconsidered

Repertoire: Bartok, Music for Strings Percussion and Celeste (I)

Read:  Kostka, Chapter 7

HW (Due on 5/30): Kostka, Ch 7 A (choose one piece to analyze) 

 

Session 19 [5/30]: Ives | Collage and Polytempo

Repertoire: The Unanswered Question

HW: Kostka, Ch 7 A Due

 

Session 20 [6/1]: Final Project Workshop 

 

 

Course Summary:

Date Details
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