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The Graph Music of Morton Feldman

$36.99 (C)

Part of Music since 1900

  • Date Published: December 2018
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107521414

$ 36.99 (C)

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About the Authors
  • Morton Feldman is widely regarded as one of America's greatest composers. His music is famously idiosyncratic, but, in many cases, the way he presented it is also unusual because, in the 1950s and 1960s, he often composed in non-standard musical notations, including a groundbreaking variety on graph paper that facilitated deliberately imprecise specifications of pitch and, at times, other musical parameters. Feldman used this notation, intermittently, over seventeen years, producing numerous graph works that invite analysis as an evolving series. Taking this approach, David Cline marshals a wide range of source materials - many previously unpublished - in clarifying the ideology, organisation and generative history of these graphs and their formative role in the chronicle of post-war music. This assists in pinpointing connections with Feldman's compositions in other formats, works by other composers, notably John Cage, and contemporary currents in painting. Performance practice is examined through analysis of Feldman's non-notated preferences and David Tudor's celebrated interpretations.

    • Shines light on Feldman's ideology and compositional techniques, reproducing previously unpublished items
    • Examines the influence of contemporary currents in painting upon Feldman, focusing on the work of Jackson Pollock and Robert Rauschenberg
    • Offers an extended case study in musical indeterminacy, including an in-depth study of David Tudor's performances
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    Product details

    • Date Published: December 2018
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107521414
    • length: 404 pages
    • dimensions: 230 x 153 x 28 mm
    • weight: 0.8kg
    • contains: 15 b/w illus. 14 tables 100 music examples
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Early graphs, 1950–3
    2. Later graphs, 1958–67
    3. Notation
    4. Ideology
    5. Holism
    6. Compositional methods I
    7. Compositional methods II
    8. Non-notated preferences
    9. Tudor's performances
    10. Connections with works in other notations
    11. Moving on
    Appendix 1. Two unpublished graphs
    Appendix 2. Other perspectives on compositional methods.

  • Author

    David Cline
    David Cline completed his Ph.D. in Music at Goldsmiths, University of London in 2011 and was a fellow of the Institute of Musical Research at the School of Advanced Study, University of London from 2013 to 2015. His research has appeared in Perspectives of New Music and Twentieth-Century Music.

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