Music 1900-1945 MODERNISM
But first . . . A PRELUDE TO MODERNISM . . .
listening example Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun (Prelude a l'apres-midi d'un faune) (1894) -- inspired by a poem inspired by a painting of a Classical mythical story -- exoticism, mythical pastoral -- ambiguous (vague?) harmony -- very little, if any, recognizable conventional or traditional form -- very well received at its premiere by the public; it baffled the musical establishment -- emphasis on sonority (timbre & colorful harmony) -- called Impressionist, although Debussy hated the term
Music 1900-1945 MODERNISM
TRENDS • DISSONANCE “LIBERATED” • “PRIMITIVISM” – MORE GENERALLY: FOLK MUSIC, AN ALTERNATIVE TO STANDARD PATTERNS & FORMULAS • CHAOTIC SURFACES, CONSISTENT INNER WORKINGS • EXPRESSIONISM • IRONY & DISTANCE – dissimulation
Dissonance as sonority LISTENING EXAMPLES CHOPIN Prelude No. 2 TEXTBOOK CD EXAMPLE: SCHOENBERG Etwas Rasch (somewhat fast) from Six Little Piano Pieces, Op. 19 (1911) (previously, 1600-1900 – dissonance is functional, functioning to drive melody and harmony forward)
Stravinsky The Rite of Spring (Le Sacre du printemps) (1913; for very large orchestra) -- a ballet with a story line written in part by an anthropologist -- interested in primitive or exotic materials; what is behind the mask of civilization?
Stravinsky The Rite of Spring -- radically new: non-tonal, harsh unresolved dissonance, percussive, brilliant orchestral effects, extreme ranges, rhythmically and metrically very irregular and quite innovative -- a riot (somewhat staged) at its premiere; much publicity ensues
Serialism developed by Arnold Schoenberg An order of the 12 possible chromatic pitches is the basis of the organization of a piece of music, not a key or tonality or a scale Schoenberg & his 2 pupils, Alban Berg & Anton Webern, become “known” as the 2nd Viennese School
Schoenberg Listening example: Suite, Op 29, 1925 For 3 clarinets & 3 strings & piano Uses “12-tone” method of composition Blue self-portrait, 1910
Schoenberg amateur Expressionist painter The Red Gaze, 1910
Webern • STUDIED WITH SCHOENBERG • STUDIED EARLY MUSIC – HE WENT BACK TO MACHAUT, JOSQUIN AND OTHERS • Modernist; very influential in the European avant-garde and among American academic composers, particularly in the 1950s; virtually unknown to the general public
Webern – listening example first movement of Symphony, Opus 21 (1928)-- serialism -- emotionally concentrated, like feelings frozen into a crystal-- very short (only two movements)-- very small orchestra (can be played by as few as 9 instruments)-- premiere at a society for private performances of music in Vienna
Stravinsky • 3 periods: • Russian (Primitivist) • Neo-Classical • Late (Serialist)
Stravinsky - Picasso • 3 periods: • Russian (Primitivist) • Neo-Classical • Late (Serialist) • several periods: • Primitivist • Cubist • Neo-Classical
Neo-classical Picasso, Femme
Neo-Romanticism BACKWATER OR MAINSTREAM? SAMUEL BARBER Adagio for Strings, 1936
Modernism – Romanticism intensified? Folk interest/exoticism primitivism Demons Subconscious? (inner demons) Artist as prophet Artist as prophet Artist as outsider/rebel Artist as outsider/rebel What is new? What is New? Historicism?
TRENDS • DISSONANCE “LIBERATED” • “PRIMITIVISM” – MORE GENERALLY: FOLK MUSIC, AN ALTERNATIVE TO STANDARD PATTERNS & FORMULAS • CHAOTIC SURFACES, CONSISTENT INNER WORKINGS • EXPRESSIONISM CHAOS v. ORDER