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Whether you are “in the business,” or you are a music theorist, musicologist, or simply an opera fan—read on! This is an analytical monograph by a Schenkerian music theorist, but it is also written by one performer and enthusiast for another. Tonality as Drama draws on the fields of dramaturgy, music theory, and historical musicology to answer a fundamental question regarding twentieth-century music: why does the use of tonality persist in opera, even after it has been abandoned in other genres? Combining the analytical approaches of the leading music and dramatic theorists of the twentieth century—Austrian music theorist Heinrich Schenker (1868-1935) and Russian director Constantin Stanislavsky (1863-1938)—Edward D. Latham reveals insights into works by Scott Joplin, George Gershwin, Kurt Weill, and Aaron Copland that are relevant to analysts, opera directors, and performers alike. Tonality as Drama is not a textbook—rather, it is an innovative analytical study meant to inspire changes in the study and performance of tonal opera. By applying Schenker’s tonal analytical technique to a small segment (early twentieth-century American opera) of a repertoire typically regarded as non-tonal (modern opera), Latham reveals a strategic use of tonality in that repertoire as a means of amplifying or undercutting the success or failure of dramatic characters. This use of “strategic tonality” is present in many of the grand operas and song cycles of the nineteenth century as well, suggesting avenues for future research.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page, Copyright, Dedication
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  1. Contents
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  1. List of Illustrations
  2. pp. vii-ix
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. x-xiv
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. xv-xvi
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  1. 1. Tonality as Drama: An Introduction
  2. pp. 1-18
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  1. 2. Dramatic Closure: The Stanislavsky System and the Attainment of Character Objectives
  2. pp. 19-53
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  1. 3. Tonal Closure: A Schenkerian Approach to Tonal Drama
  2. pp. 54-68
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  1. 4. The Completed Background LineWith Open-Ended Coda: Scott Joplin’s “Grand Opera” Treemonisha (1911)
  2. pp. 69-94
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  1. 5. The Multi-Movement Anstieg or Initial Ascent: George Gershwin’s “Folk Opera” Porgy and Bess (1935)
  2. pp. 95-138
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  1. 6. The Multi-Movement Initial Arpeggiation: Kurt Weill’s “Broadway Opera” Street Scene (1947)
  2. pp. 139-164
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  1. 7. The Prolonged Permanent Interruption: Aaron Copland’s “Operatic Tone Poem ”The Tender Land (1954)
  2. pp. 165-192
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  1. BIBLIOGRAPHY
  2. pp. 193-210
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  1. index
  2. pp. 211-221
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Additional Information

ISBN
9781574413717
Related ISBN
9781574412499
MARC Record
OCLC
621699410
Pages
240
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
Yes
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