Volume 1 (2015)
Repetition and Musicality
Elizabeth Hellmuth Margulis (University of Arkansas)
Volume 1.1 (February 2015)
This video explores the connection between repetition and musicality. It starts by demonstrating the role of repetition in a popular web app, and then chronicles the centrality of repetition within musical practice at large. Given this centrality, musical repetition has been relatively understudied, but the methods and perspectives of cognitive science might help illuminate its functions. The rest of the video reviews recent empirical work that examines the role of repetition in musical perceptions, suggesting that repetition shapes attention and engagement in powerful ways.
Contrapuntal Thinking in Haydn
Peter Schubert (McGill University)
Volume 1.2 (June 2015)
The first eight measures of the finale of Haydn’s Symphony #99 are straightforward as to harmony and formal function (they are a textbook period ending in PAC V). But the first theme group takes on larger proportions as a direct repetition of the basic idea introduces a new formal function. The momentum that Haydn builds up as this first theme group grows in length depends on “contrapuntal thinking.” In this video, Peter Schubert pulls apart the little melodic fragments that Haydn cleverly recombined.
Multiple Agency in Mozart’s Chamber Music
Edward Klorman (Queens College and The Juilliard School)
Volume 1.3 (October 2015)
Comparisons between the string quartet and artful conversation have flourished since the genre’s birth. If a quartet performance resembles stylized social intercourse, each player may be understood to enact the role of an individual persona engaged in the discourse. This study introduces the concept of multiple agency, whereby musical events are interpreted through the actions and interactions of these individual personas. This analytical approach is demonstrated through the analysis of a passage from Mozart’s Quartet in G Major, K. 387. A more thorough exposition of multiple agency’s historical and conceptual underpinning appears in the author’s monograph, Mozart’s Music of Friends.