sabato 15 marzo 2008

Chansons medievaux

Chansons medievaux
The following is an html version of my PhD dissertation, submitted as part of the requirements for the doctorate in systematic musicology from the Faculty of Music at the University of Western Ontario. Apart from minor corrections and changes in formatting it is unchanged and unrevised, so the research and bibliography are current only to 1994. The music examples were originally drawn by hand, and in order to make them available I scanned the printed sheets and converted them to gif images, which are viewable by clicking the appropriate links, either through the table of contents below, or from the main text.
The aim of this study is to lay the groundwork for an eventual codification of musical form and style in the troubadour songs. To that end, it concentrates on two of the broadest musical parameters, form and tonal structure. A new catalogue of all attributed songs is provided with the study, which is intended to remedy the deficiencies of Gennrich's, the only complete one available until now. It is based on descriptive and logical, rather than historical, principles, and the graphing procedure employed is designed to provide more information than the standard ones, by showing connections at the sub-phrase level. The songs are grouped into five large categories, based on the kind of phrase repetition found in their musical forms, and these categories then serve as a tool in the detailed examination of the nature and role of musical form in the repertoire. It is found that the troubadours' acknowledged fascination with structure for its own sake, as evidenced in their versification, can also be seen in their musical forms. Indeed, there is an intimate and dynamic interaction between the two kinds of form, which can serve as a paradigm for the understanding of music/text relations in the canso. The analysis of selected examples demonstrates some of the many ways in which the troubadours created subtle and finely articulated formal designs in their music; this contradicts the view that they were unskilled as composers and relied only on simple standard formulas for their music.v

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