[Smt-talk] serialism-cognition query

Eliot Handelman eliot at colba.net
Sun Feb 27 12:20:46 PST 2011

On 25/02/2011 3:24 PM, braus wrote:
> Dear SMT Members,
> Can someone recommend a study/studies on the perception
> of serial order in chordal segmentations of a row. Any
> and all sources are welcome -- analysis, music cognition,
> composer commentaries.

Hi Ira,

I'm not sure what you're asking.  Is it something like this: a listener 
is primed on a 12-tone row,
performed monodically.  Then, the row is performed as an
order-preserving series of chords (of random numerosity), with random 
octave displacement.  A second performance is constructed
that interchanges two chord tones, also displaced into different 
octaves. Can a listener tell which of these two performances
corresponds to the original row?

Random 8ve displacement seems called for since you mention a "row", 
which needs
to be realized as pitches.  I assume the way such PC's are expressed is 
not of interest.

My guess is "not better than randomly," but you can slso try simplifying 
the problem.
a. prime listener on 12-tone row.
b. make random selection (eg every 2nd note).
c.  swap two tones in this selection

Can the listener correctly say which violates the row, and which does 
not? I would also guess,
"not better than randomly".

Are you guessing otherwise? None of the literatures I'm familiar with in 
music cog., memory, sequence recognition etc
suggest so.


-- eliot
Eliot Handelman, PhD
CIRMMT, Montreal

More information about the Smt-talk mailing list