[Smt-talk] Altered pitch, preserved contour

Fieldman, Hali FieldmanH at umkc.edu
Wed May 20 11:58:00 PDT 2009

When I talk to classes about maximal compositional use of minimal musical materials, I talk about motives as having specific and general properties: an ascending leap of a fifth is specifically that, and is also an ascending leap, and, most generally, a leap.  It can be treated so that its specific qualities are preserved under some operation, or so that its general qualities become generators of less-strictly-altered versions of themselves.  Obviously the idea isn't mine -- it's Schoenberg's, primarily -- and the language isn't technical (and perhaps not sufficiently precise, though it seems to work).  But it would serve to get your point across, I think.

Hali Fieldman, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Coordinator of Music Theory
Conservatory of Music and Dance
University of Missouri -- Kansas City
816.235.2951 // fieldmanh at umkc.edu

-----Original Message-----
From: smt-talk-bounces at societymusictheory.org on behalf of Robert Morris
Sent: Wed 5/20/2009 10:14 AM
To: A.Ockelford at roehampton.ac.uk
Cc: smt-talk at societymusictheory.org
Subject: Re: [Smt-talk] Altered pitch, preserved contour
"contour preservation"

Robert Morris, Professor of Composition
Chair of the Composition Department
Affiliate Faculty of the Theory and Musicology Departments
Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester
phone: 585-274-1108.  e-mail: mris at mail.rochester.edu

On Wed, 20 May 2009 A.Ockelford at roehampton.ac.uk wrote:

> 'Intervallic augmentation'?
> Best
> Adam Ockelford
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> ________________________________________
> From: smt-talk-bounces at societymusictheory.org [smt-talk-bounces at societymusictheory.org] On Behalf Of Richard Lewis [richardlewis at fastmail.co.uk]
> Sent: Wednesday, May 20, 2009 11:23 AM
> To: smt-talk at societymusictheory.org
> Subject: [Smt-talk] Altered pitch, preserved contour
> Can anyone think if there's an accepted term to describe the
> phenomenon where some musical material is stretched in pitch (making
> the intervals bigger but preserving the contour). The first thing that
> comes to mind is 'augmentation', but this is usually only applied to
> rhythmic alteration.
> I suspect that, as this phenomenon is not common in the Western canon,
> it may have escaped categorisation by the early C20th arbiters of
> music theory. Though I'd be happy to be proved wrong.
> Best wishes,
> Richard
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