MUS 371
Music Analysis: Music with Text Fall 2014
Division I Writing Skills
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Class Details

The course explores the ways in which musical structure interacts with, can comment upon, and can influence one’s reading of a text set to music, and similarly, how texts set to music can exert influence upon and guide one’s understanding of the musical structure. Using scenes from Mozart operas and selected songs of the 19th and 20th centuries (by Schubert, Schumann, Brahms and Schoenberg), the course will examine the bearing specific aspects of a text (voice, person, time, alliteration, meter, and so forth) have upon the musical domain, and conversely, how musical structures have the ability to project or allegorize actions in the text. We will observe the often amazing ways composers of texted music use the tonal system to create musical desires–desires that may be fulfilled, withheld, delayed, redirected, and so forth, in ways that enhance, or enact the desires of characters in a drama or poem. In addition to the specific issues involving texted and dramatic works, the course will introduce certain techniques and insights of linear analysis–one of the most profound developments in tonal analysis during the last century. Analysis assignments, based on the student’s close study of texted musical works, will offer the opportunity to apply these techniques. The course will also confront the difficult issue of writing about music and will help students define and clearly express ideas about music.
The Class: Format: tutorial; students will attend one weekly group lecture and one weekly tutorial meeting
Limit: 10
Expected: 10
Class#: 2390
Grading: OPG
Requirements/Evaluation: evaluation will be based on five analysis essays/presentations and five critiques of another student's analyses
Extra Info: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis
Prerequisites: MUS 104
Enrollment Preferences: those with the most theory background (MUS 103/104, 201/202)
Unit Notes: MUS Group A Electives --classes 2015 and 2016
Distributions: Division I Writing Skills

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