Inaugural Conference

The Peabody Conservatory
of The Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD

April 4-5, 2003


Select from the following:

Michael Berry, "A Modular Space Approach to Voice Leading in AtonalMusic"

Ieda Bispo, "A Japanese Garden? Western Confluences in Toru Takemitsu'sIn An Autumn Garden for Gagaku"

John Buccheri (Featured Guest), Roundtable Discussion on Teaching MusicTheory in the 21st Century

Norman Carey, "The Diminished Seventh Chord as Prolongational Agentin Bach, Chopin and Jobim"

Ellon D. Carpenter, "Scriabin's Octatonic Ur-Motives: Genesis, Contextand Process"

Ellen R. Flint, "Compositional Prototypes in the Piano Music of EllsworthMilburn"

Robert Gauldin (Keynote Speaker), "Tchaikovsky and Desirée: APossible Secret Program for the Bb minor Concerto"

Taylor Greer, "Prelude to a New Music: The Principle of Opposition inCharles Griffes's Final Works"

J. Daniel Jenkins, "Voice-Leading Constraints in the Music of ElliottCarter"

Edward D. Latham, "Six Degrees of Confirmation: Deception, Evasion andAbandonment in Korngold's Die tote Stadt"

Eric McKee, "Schönberg on Mahler: Op. 19, No. 6"

Richard S. Parks, "Conventional Conceptual Metaphors and Music TheoryIconic Models"

Jonathan Saggau, "Textual and Musical Analysis of Stravinsky's FullFadom Five"

Steven Strunk, "Tonnetz Chains and Clusters in Post-Bebop Jazz"

Matthew M. Werley, "From Alienation to Abnegation: Jenufa and the Metaphysicsof Dramatic and Musical Discourse at the Turn of Century"


"A Modular Space Approach to Voice Leading in Atonal Music"

Michael Berry
Graduate Center of the City University of New York
Winner of the Award for the Best Graduate Student Paper 

Several recent discussions of voice leading in atonalmusic have taken David Lewin's transformational approach as a point ofdeparture. These studies rely mainly on transpositional (T) and inversional(I) operators to motivate the voice leadings. When the sets are not T-or I- related, theorists have proposed a number of ad hoc operators that"fuzzify" or otherwise complicate the T/I operators. By combining thistransformational approach with current conceptions of non-mod 12 pitchspaces proposed by Andrew Mead, Matthew Santa, and others, "crisp" T andI operators can be retained within and across different pitch spaces. Examplesfrom the music of Stravinsky, Stockhausen, Messiaen, Hába, and Debussyillustrate the approach.

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"A Japanese Garden? Western Confluences in Toru Takemitsu'sIn An Autumn Garden for Gagaku"

Ieda Bispo
Joetsu University, Japan

Toru Takemitsu's work In an Autumn Garden (1973) for gagaku— Japanese court music — offers a unique perspective of the influenceson his music. Scholars traditionally suggest that, compared to his workswritten for Western instruments, this piece is Takemitsu's most extremeincursion into his own cultural background. However, a close analysis ofthe work shows the reappearance of compositional techniques of Takemitsu'sprevious works, not always related to Japanese aesthetics. In this essay,I intend to demonstrate that, although expressed in a traditionally Easternmusical idiom, In an Autumn Garden is structurally organized accordingto a Western musical conception. 

On the surface, it seems that Takemitsu struggled to imposehis own musical language in gagaku. However, while deliberately maintainingsome of the performing techniques of gagaku instruments, he expressed hisown individual style on a deeper level, in the structure of the composition.His approach to the texture is one example. Although In an Autumn Gardenhighlights occasional melodic lines, it can be considered as essentiallya study of nuances of tone color. Tone color is also a concern in traditionalJapanese music, but in gagaku it is not expressed through texture. Traditionally,the texture in a gagaku ensemble consists of layers of soundin which specific instruments, assigned to specific functions, sound withina fixed register. There is no mobility between these layers and the resultingstatic character is one of the most striking features of gagaku. Takemitsuruptures gagaku's stratified structure using Debussy's conception of continuousshifting textural colors between the instrumental forces and Messiaen'sconception of harmony functioning as timbre.

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Roundtable Discussion on Teaching Music Theory in the21st Century 

Featured Guest: John Buccheri
Charles Deering McCormick Professor ofTeaching Excellence,Northwestern University 
Immediate Past President of The College Music Society 

Three questions to consider:

1. Many students, even those who enjoy their study ofmusic theory, do not incorporate what they have learned in theory classinto the way they learn, interpret, and understand music. Why is this so?What can be done about it?

2. What approaches might be taken to integrate music theoryinto other aspects of a student's music study; in particular, their performanceexperiences?

3. Is rhythm given enough time in the traditional two-or three-year core curriculum? What more is there to study in this area,and what aspect of study might be trimmed to make time for rhythm study?

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"The Diminished Seventh Chord as Prolongational Agentin Bach, Chopin and Jobim"

Norman Carey
Eastman School of Music

Descending diminished seventh chords serve in a varietyof harmonic settings. Most typically, diminished seventh chords behaveas surrogate dominant sevenths, as pointed out by Rameau. Although dissonant,these chords, through their surrogate status, may control local eventsin unexpected ways, as the works under investigation demonstrate. The paperexplores the question of compositional modeling. The coda of Bach's ChromaticFantasy, shares a significant number of features with the E-minor Prelude of Chopin, and the song "How Insensitive," byAntonio Carlos Jobim is consciously based upon Chopin's Prelude. 

The complex harmony in the coda of the Fantasy is explainedby a diatonic descending fifths sequence. Such a sequence inevitably movesthrough the tritone, which will explain the seemingly anomalous resolutionof two diminished seventh chords. The E-minor Prelude shares many featureswith Bach's coda, including the diminished seventh cascade and a seriesof 7-6 suspensions. These features serve to offer support for a new readingof the Prelude. Previous readings are discussed, including those that proposea "gapped" Urlinie.

Jobim modeled "How Insensitive" (Insensatez) on the Prelude,but as he pays homage, he simultaneously subverts Chopin's elegiac opus.

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"Scriabin's Octatonic Ur-Motives: Genesis, Context andProcess"

Ellon D. Carpenter
Arizona State University 

Scriabin, in many of his later works, from Op. 52 throughOp. 74 (his last opus), used several "octatonic ur-motives" that may betraced to his pre-octatonic pieces, such as Op. 32 and Op. 45. The evolvingtonal context of the most frequently used of these motives — and relatedsets — reflects Scriabin's progressive refinement of his harmonic languagechronologically from a tonal, seventh-chord-based foundation to a moreoctatonic context and, lastly, to a nearly atonal basis in his last works.

Although initially located on specific upper pitches inthe higher tertian major-minor-type sonorities that Scriabin favored (ultimatelyto the exclusion of triads), in Scriabin's final opus these motives areused independently. Such a successive attenuation of the functional capabilitiesof the tonal language and the relative strengthening of the non-functionalmotivic content result in a pre-serial composition in which the verticaland horizontal aspects are in close agreement.

Analysis of several of Scriabin's short piano pieces,with emphasis on the Prelude, Op. 74, No. 4 (1914), reveals this evolutionand investigates not only serial and melodic processes as development ofthese motives, but also as an expression of the form.

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"Compositional Prototypes in the Piano Music of EllsworthMilburn"

Ellen R. Flint
Wilkes University 

Ellsworth Milburn's music has been described by criticsas "craggy, colorful, romantic, aggressive, . . . brilliant, raging, andengaging." Among his many compositions stand two short but powerful worksfor solo piano, "Scherzo" and "The Stone Forest." Although he regularlyincludes piano in his chamber and orchestral works, these two pieces, commissionedby pianist John Hendrickson, are Milburn's only works for solo piano. Armedwith Hendrickson's direction to write "something that is harder than anythingI've ever played before," Milburn completed the works while in residenceat the MacDowell Colony in 1989.

One might also add "witty" to the adjectives used to describehis music, for, in "Scherzo" and "The Stone Forest," Milburn pays homage,directly and indirectly, to two earlier standards of the repertoire. Analysisof these two works reveals the eloquence with which Milburn extracts thevery essence of two well-known works of the nineteenth century, one eachby Johannes Brahms and Ludwig van Beethoven Trio and the first movementof Beethoven's Sonata No. 21 in C Major, Op.53 material into two virtuosicworks for solo piano. This presentation explores, by way of performanceand discussion, the conditions under which "Scherzo" and "The Stone Forest"were composed and the materials and devices that are the foundation oftheir structures.

Additional commentary will be offered by the composer.

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"Tchaikovsky and Desirée: A Possible Secret Programfor the Bb minor Concerto"

Keynote Speaker: Robert Gauldin, Eastman School of Music

Despite its great popularity with concert audiences, Tchaikovsky'sBb minor Piano Concerto (1874) exhibits a number of unusual features whichhave been duly singled out by critics since its premiere. The key to unlockingthese idiosyncratic characteristics may lie in an further expansion ofDavid Brown's investigation into possible acronyms relating the composerto Désirée Artôt, the Belgian singer with whom he hadpreviously fallen in love about 1868. This paper will attempt to demonstratethat an even more elaborate network of acronyms and harmonic/key relations,some of which date back to Romeo and Juliet (1869), exists in the concerto,and that their presence and positioning in certain passages strongly suggestbiographical episodes of a programmatic nature pertaining directly to therelationship between Tchaikovsky and Artôt. 

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"Prelude to a New Music: The Principle of Opposition inCharles Griffes's Final Works"

Taylor Greer
Pennsylvania State University

During the final years of his life the American composerCharles T. Griffes developed a highly experimental style, especially inhis works for solo piano such as the Piano Sonata, "Clouds" from RomanSketches, Op. 7, and the Three Preludes. Composed in 1919 and publishedin 1967, the preludes were the last works he completed before his death.Previous studies of Griffes's late style have concentrated on the PianoSonata, exploring his use of various synthetic scales. Although the preludesalso exhibit alternative approaches to pitch organization, what is morestriking is Griffes's tendency to juxtapose opposites in the same work,dissonant scales and chords appearing side by side of traditional triads.

My presentation consists of two parts: (1) a historicaloverview of Griffes's late style, focusing on his interest in contemporaryFrench and Russian composers; (2) a detailed analysis of the formal, motivic,and harmonic organization of Prelude #3. The late preludes reveal a newexpressive language in the process of being born. It is a pity that Griffesdied before this process was complete.

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"Voice-Leading Constraints in the Music of Elliott Carter"
J. Daniel Jenkins

Eastman School of Music

There is evidence to suggest that Elliott Carter has developeda compositional language that includes some voice-leading constraints.Carter explains that,"very often, I would take a certain chord and usethat as a basis of a composition." The chords that Carter uses have whatRobert Morris calls the Complement Union Property. CUP states that thecombination of two nonintersecting members of different set-classes willalways result in the same third set-class. In moving from chord to chord,Carter uses, "one note [or] two notes as a pivot from one chord to thenext; sometimes three [or more]."

The pitches that are invariant from one statement of thechord to the next can simply be considered common tones. The voice leadingof the other pitches is guided both by a pre-compositional set of allowableintervals (not interval classes) for each instrument or instrument groupand by the rhythmic language. The interval-patterns change from piece topiece, while Carter's penchant for disallowing simultaneous attacks betweeninstruments and instrument groups is pervasive in his music. In combination,these factors provide constraints on the voice leading.

Lento espressivo, the fourth movement of the Fifth StringQuartet (1995), serves as a case study. The analysis, which begins withan investigation of CUP relations, also includes networks that model notonly the motion between two chords, but also the large-scale motion thatspans the movement. Thus, the analysis suggests that similar voice-leadingprocedures operate on both local and global levels. 

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"Six Degrees of Confirmation: Deception, Evasion and Abandonmentin Korngold's Die tote Stadt"

Edward D. Latham
Temple University

The purpose of the present study is to refine the notionof cadential disruption for use in the analysis of late nineteenth-centuryand early twentieth-century operatic repertoire, clarifying the differencesbetween deceptive, evaded and abandoned cadences as defined by Janet Schmalfeldt(1992) and William Caplin (1998). Three cadential progressions, in particular— the abandoned cadence in which a dominant-preparatory chord leads toa non-resolving cadential six-four, the evaded cadence in which [V7]-IV is substituted for the tonic, and the deceptive cadenceresolving to root-position IV — are examined in detail, with referenceto the works of Janacek, Weill and Korngold, among others, and an argumentfor harmonic stability or instability (i.e. the use of a dominant seventhor diminished seventh-type chord as a cadential substitution) as a primarydeterminant of cadential function is presented.

Paul's aria, "Du weißt, daß ich in Brüggeblieb," from Act I of Korngold's Die tote Stadt, is used to illustrateall six types of cadential confirmation, and the results of a formal-harmonicanalysis are composed with a Schenkerian graph of the aria, revealing pointsof both correlation and disjunction. Conclusions drawn from the analyticalsection of the paper are then applied to the interpretation of the aria,with regard both to musical and dramatic choices made by the performerand the director, and the results are demonstrated in a live performance.

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"Schönberg on Mahler: Op. 19, No. 6"

Eric McKee
Pennsylvania State University

Op. 19, No. 6 is arguably Schoenberg's most profound utteranceof musical brevity. Because of its short length and musical substance,Op. 19, No. 6 has assumed the role as the atonal counterpart to Mozart'sA-major variation theme, Op. 331. David Lewin notes that "the ability ofthis little piece to sustain (and withstand) indefinite analysis of allkinds is remarkable" (Lewin 1982-83, 369). With only one exception, though,these analytic commentaries take an ultra-formalist stance. Only passingreference, if at all, is made to the piece's genesis, extramusical associationsand expressive contents.

My reading takes as its starting point the historicalcontext of Op. 19, No. 6 and attempts to show how extramusical factorsand, specifically, the death of Mahler, served as compositional motivationin guiding Schoenberg's conception of the piece. Two basic questions underliethe study: In what way(s) does the piece speak of Mahler the composer andin what way(s) does it speak of Mahler's death? My central conclusionsare that this piece can be read as Schoenberg's tribute to Mahler's contributionto "modern" music and that through the strategic use of the pitches E andAb Schoenberg captures both spiritual and physical aspects of Mahler'sdeath.

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"Conventional Conceptual Metaphors and Music Theory IconicModels"

Richard S. Parks
The University of Western Ontario

Lakoff's and Johnson's Metaphors We Live By (1980) brokenew ground in linguistics and philosophy by challenging the prevailingview that the function of metaphor is chiefly decorative, an artifice ofspeech and literature. They argued instead that metaphors are fundamentalto human conceptualization, serving the essential purpose of helping usunderstand abstract concepts and phenomena by reference to correspondenceswith visceral bodily experiences. Their theory has gained wide acceptanceand found application in many fields, including music theorists Arnie Cox(2000), Janna Saslaw (1996) and Lawrence Zbikowski (1997). In differentways each has taken aspects of Lakoff's work as a point of departure todemonstrate ways in which deeply rooted (even subliminal) metaphoricalconceptualizations underlie our own understanding of aspects of music. 

In this paper I explore the relevance of the theory ofconventional conceptual metaphor for understanding iconic models used inmusic theory (part of a much larger project that explores relationshipsbetween visual models, and the theoretical concepts and musical structuresthey serve to elucidate).

I begin by identifying two conventional conceptual metaphorsembodied in a model of parsimonious voice leading relations among 4-27chords derived from an octatonic universe: CHORDS ARE OBJECTS (occupyinglocations on a cubic space), and VOICE LEADING RELATIONS ARE JOURNEYS ALONGPATHS. From them, I extrapolate two archetypal conventional conceptualmetaphors employed by music theorists: MUSICAL ENTITIES ARE SPATIAL OBJECTS,and MUSICAL ENTITIES ARE CONTAINERS. I then present several specific metaphorsdrawn from these archetypes, demonstrating how they are embedded in theways in which we illustrate-i.e., model-music theoretical entities in ourdiscourse.

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"Textual and Musical Analysis of Stravinsky's FullFadom Five"

Jonathan Saggau
New England Conservatory of Music 

The name Stravinsky in the context of vocal music is oftenequated with an almost obsessive faithfulness to the sound of language.Stravinsky "insisted on the primacy of language sounds for composers" (Cogan,7) and remains historically one of the most sonically sensitive composerslinking linguistic sound to musical design. The second of Stravinsky'sThree Songs from William Shakespeare which I propose to discuss providesus with a perfect example of this. We will discuss how Stravinsky fusesthe sounds of Shakespeare's poetic language with musical language intoa cohesive sonic design. This paper discusses the use of linguistic analysis,spectrographic (fast Fourier transform - FFT) imaging, statistical analysis,and pitch class analysis in the linguistic sound of the text as well as theoverall structure of the piece. Stravinsky marries the multiple large andsmall scale dimensions of his music's sonic and formal structure to thesound of the poetry itself. He accomplishes this, among other methods,by placing sung pitches in registral space relative to the high and lowspectra of vowel formants and by marrying ensemble articulation to thesound of consonants within Shakespeare's poetry while mirroring overallformal divisions of the poem through the large scale divisions of the pieceas well as through the distribution and opposition of pitches from twopartitions of the cycle of fifths. We will consider the overall soundof the text from a structural and sonic point of view using the InternationalPhonetic Alphabet and spectrographic images to illustrate both coherentoverall poetic and musical design as well as consonant and vowel spectraloppositions within Stravinsky's setting of Shakespeare's poetry. 

Work Cited:
Cogan, Robert. The Sounds of Song. Cambridge, MA: PublicationContact International, 1999.

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"Tonnetz Chains and Clusters in Post-Bebop Jazz"

Steven Strunk
The Catholic University of America 

Many post-bebop jazz compositions include nondiatonic,nonfunctional successions of four or more chords of the same structure,which, when graphed on the Tonnetz, form chains or contiguous clustersof geometric figures. Chains have been the subject of previous work focusedon the group structure of the neo-Riemannian and twelve-tone operationsthat generate them. In addition to chains, isomorphic clusters of chordsappear frequently among compositions by various jazz composers. These formationsmay all be thought of as a kind of compositional space which is realizedin different ways at each occurrence.

The P, R, and L operations on triads are extended to accommodatethe major and minor seventh chords of jazz so that the invariant dyadsand geometric relations of the original operations are maintained. Thepaper then examines the realizations of Tonnetz chains and clusters andthe relationships among them in nine jazz compositions. A group table isgiven for a chain of minor seventh chords shared by "Red Clay" (FreddieHubbard) and "Speak No Evil" (Wayne Shorter), and a chain of
major seventh chords in "Hold Out Your Hand" (Paul Bley)is related by PLR to that of "Red Clay."

Relations among isomorphic clusters of major seventhsin "Steps" and "Tones for Joan's Bones" (Chick Corea) and "Unity Village"(Pat Metheny) are examined and their individual realizations contrasted.Other compositions studied in a similar manner are "Tell Me a Bedtime Story"and "Butterfly" (Herbie Hancock) and "Forest Flower" (Charles Lloyd).

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"From Alienation to Abnegation: Jenufa and the Metaphysicsof Dramatic and Musical Discourse at the Turn of Century"

Matthew M. Werley
Temple University

Historical discussions of Leos Janácek's Jenufa(1903) have primarily drawn attention to issues of realism and nationalismat the turn of century. The tight musical discourse between its speech-melodystyle and orchestral apparatus represents the composer's ingenious solutionto several aesthetic problems remaining in the wake of the Wagnerian legacy(Tyrrell, 1968). Furthermore, the coupling of late nineteenth-century harmonicpractice with its provincial subject matter also orients Jenufa towardthe larger European movements of realism and an emerging musical modernism(Dahlhaus, 1985). But how do these aesthetic observations condition ananalysis of the work? 

This paper seeks to address, from this premise, severaldramatic and musical techniques that Janácek deploys throughoutJenufa. By focusing on the character Laca — who bears great structuralsignificance for the opera — through an accompanying Stanislavskian (dramatic)and Schenkerian (musical) analysis (Marcozzi, 1992; Latham, 2000), we canobserve how traditional operatic conventions are negotiated within Janácek'sown brand of modernism. A closer look at a pivotal scene in Act II furtherilluminates the collision of dramatic forces which situate Laca in a long-rangetrajectory from a position of social alienation to one of abnegation. 

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