[Smt-talk] Pieces with improvisatory openings

Fieldman, Hali FieldmanH at umkc.edu
Sun Oct 23 11:40:13 PDT 2011

Not an opening, exactly; but movements of Rimsky's Scheherazade do have distinctly improvisatory-sounding beginnings.

Hali Fieldman, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Coordinator of Music Theory
Conservatory of Music and Dance
University of Missouri -- Kansas City
From: smt-talk-bounces at lists.societymusictheory.org [smt-talk-bounces at lists.societymusictheory.org] On Behalf Of Mitch Ohriner [mohriner at gmail.com]
Sent: Friday, October 21, 2011 11:31 AM
To: smt-talk at societymusictheory.org
Subject: [Smt-talk] Pieces with improvisatory openings

Hello Collected Wisdom and Beloved Scholars,

I’m interested in studying the emergence of tempo from the perspective of the listener. One viable case study for this phenomenon is the class of pieces that begin with short, improvisatory passages that precede more temporally patterned movements proper.

This is slightly different than the phenomenon previously discussed on this list in which the most salient level of time-span organization is initially obscured in preference for a faster or slower rate (i.e., London’s “metric fakeout”).

A paragon of what I’m looking for would be Chopin’s G-minor Ballade, Op. 23. I’ve also been directed to Schumann’s String Quartet No. 3, Op. 41, no. 3.

Do you know of other tonal examples like these? I’ll take responses off-list unless they’re of general interest.

Thank you for your thoughts and I look forward to seeing many of you at our Annual Meeting next week.

Best regards,

Mitch Ohriner

mohriner at gmail.com<mailto:mohriner at gmail.com>
Assistant Professor of Music Theory
Shenandoah Conservatory
Winchester, VA

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