Visual Sounds: Graphic Notation in Theory and Practice|
Spring 2016 not offered
There are many different kinds of graphic scores, some providing very minimal performance instruction and therefore requiring considerable interpretative strategies, others replete with detailed instructions, differing from conventional scores more in layout than in concept. This course will be a forum to study and perform graphic scores by Mark Applebaum, Anthony Braxton, Earle Brown, John Cage, Cornelius Cardew, Anestis Logothetis, Roman Haubenstock-Ramati, Alvin Lucier, Robert Moran, and new generations of emerging composers. We will study selected readings and writings to put them in a broader scholarly context and discuss strategies for performing these pieces, which will be put into action in weekly performance workshops. There will be a public performance at the end of the semester. The approach will be interdisciplinary, drawing upon semiotic analysis, gestalt psychology, visual art, and phenomenology.
One of the reason composers started to experiment with graphic scores in the 1950s and '60s was to develop a kind of musical notation that could be read, and therefore performed, even by those who did not identify as musically literate. This course is, accordingly, open to all students; no prior knowledge or instrumental expertise is required. We will work primarily with voices and body percussion.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Seminar||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (MUSC)
Beal, A. C. 2002. 'TIME CANVASSES': MORTON FELDMAN AND THE PAINTERS OF THE NEW YORK SCHOOL, in Music and Modern Art. Edited by J. Leggio, pp. 227-245. New York: Routledge.
Behrman, D. 1965. WHAT INDETERMINATE NOTATION DETERMINES. Perspectives of New Music 3:58-73.
Bryars, G. 1976. NOTES ON MARCEL DUCHAMP'S MUSIC. Studio International 192:274-279.
Burroughs, W. S. 1967. THE INVISIBLE GENERATION, in The Ticket That Exploded. New York: Grove Press.
Cardew, C. 1976. WIGGLY LINES AND WOBBLY MUSIC. Studio International 192:249-255.
Cooper, H. 2002. POPULAR MODELS: FOX-TROT AND JAZZ BAND IN MONDRIAN'S ABSTRACTION, in Music and Modern Art. Edited by J. Leggio, pp. 163-201. New York: Routledge.
Dennis, B. 1991. CARDEW'S 'TREATISE' (MAINLY THE VISUAL ASPECTS). Tempo:10-16.
Dorum, I. C. 1981. GRAINGER'S 'FREE MUSIC', in The Percy Grainger Companion. Edited by L. Foreman, pp. 155-167. London: Thames Publishing.
Grainger, P. 1981. STATEMENT ON FREE-MUSIC, in The Percy Grainger Companion. Edited by L. Foreman, pp. 168-169. London: Thames Publishing.
Kandinsky, W. 1926. POINT AND LINE TO PLANE. Munich: Verlag Albert Langen.
Karkoschka, E. 1972. NOTATION IN NEW MUSIC: A CRITICAL GUIDE TO INTERPRETATION AND REALIZATION. New York: Praeger Publishers.
LeCorbusier. 1982. THE MODULOR 1 & 2. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Mondrian, P. 1993a. JAZZ AND NEO-PLASTIC (1927), in The New Art - The New Life: Collected Writings of Piet Mondrian. Edited by H. J. Holtzman, Martin S., pp. 217-222. New York: Da Capo Press.
--1993b. NEO-PLASTICISM: ITS REALIZATION IN MUSIC AND IN FUTURE THEATER (1922), in The New Art - The New Life: Collected Writings of Piet Mondrian. Edited by H. J. Holtzman, Martin S., pp. 156-163. New York: Da Capo Press.
O'Grady, T. J. 1981. AESTHETIC VALUE IN INDETERMINATE MUSIC. The Musical Quarterly 67:366-381.
Pritchett, J. THE MUSIC OF JOHN CAGE. Cambridge [England]; New York: Cambridge University Press, 1993.
Smith, S. a. S. 1981. VISUAL MUSIC. Perspectives of New Music 20:75-93.
|Examinations and Assignments: |
There will be weekly readings (50-70 pages), 2 papers (7 pages and 10 pages, respectively), one possibly substituted by a composition, and an oral presentation (c. 15 minutes) on a graphic score or related chosen topic.
-Gestalt Psychology and the organization, interpretation and comprehension of images
-Semiotics and the notation of music
-Experience: the phenomenology of graphic music performance
-Kandinsky's "Point and Line to Plane": The analysis and feeling of pictorial elements
-Percy Grainger's "Free Music"
-Fusion of forms: "New York School" composers and the Abstract Expressionist painters
-"Wiggly Lines and Wobbly Music": Cornelius Cardew's Treatise
-What Indeterminacy Determines: William S. Burroughs, Ellsworth Kelly, John Cage, Marcel Duchamp
50% Class attendance and participation
10% First paper
20% Final paper
10% Final concert
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
Tuesdays will involve discussion of the week's readings and writing assignments; Thursdays will be the performance workshop, which will include discussion of our approaches to the works.
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