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‘C omposing with I ntervals ’: I ntervallic S yntax and S erial T echnique in L ate S travinsky

‘C omposing with I ntervals ’: I ntervallic S yntax and S erial T echnique in L ate S travinsky ABSTRACT In Stravinsky's final serial works, the intervallic component assumed a more decisive role than in his in earlier compositions, becoming the foundational aspect of a ‘motivic’ technique, the specific aspects of which are illustrated here through several sketch‐based analyses. In Stravinsky's case, motivic‐intervallic syntax and serial procedures operate according to slightly but significantly different criteria: the first on the level of single intervals, the second on the level of pitch‐class sets. Using several specific examples drawn from compositions ranging from Agon to the Requiem Canticles, this article demonstrates that the discrepancy provided Stravinsky with a stimulus, rather than an obstacle, to composition, and provides a guide to the interpretation of certain well‐known characteristics both of his creative process and of his serial technique. The music‐theoretical aspects of Stravinsky's intervallic syntax are illustrated, and its interaction with serial technique is observed from two conceptually different directions: from intervallic motives to rows (the initial definition of a row of pitches), and from the row to intervallic motives (the transformation of the ‘abstract’ row into concrete musical contexts). http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Music Analysis Wiley

‘C omposing with I ntervals ’: I ntervallic S yntax and S erial T echnique in L ate S travinsky

Music Analysis , Volume 28 (2‐3) – Jul 1, 2009

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
© 2011 The Author. Music Analysis © 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
ISSN
0262-5245
eISSN
1468-2249
DOI
10.1111/j.1468-2249.2011.00302.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

ABSTRACT In Stravinsky's final serial works, the intervallic component assumed a more decisive role than in his in earlier compositions, becoming the foundational aspect of a ‘motivic’ technique, the specific aspects of which are illustrated here through several sketch‐based analyses. In Stravinsky's case, motivic‐intervallic syntax and serial procedures operate according to slightly but significantly different criteria: the first on the level of single intervals, the second on the level of pitch‐class sets. Using several specific examples drawn from compositions ranging from Agon to the Requiem Canticles, this article demonstrates that the discrepancy provided Stravinsky with a stimulus, rather than an obstacle, to composition, and provides a guide to the interpretation of certain well‐known characteristics both of his creative process and of his serial technique. The music‐theoretical aspects of Stravinsky's intervallic syntax are illustrated, and its interaction with serial technique is observed from two conceptually different directions: from intervallic motives to rows (the initial definition of a row of pitches), and from the row to intervallic motives (the transformation of the ‘abstract’ row into concrete musical contexts).

Journal

Music AnalysisWiley

Published: Jul 1, 2009

References