Fieldman, Hali FieldmanH at umkc.edu
Mon Apr 22 11:22:48 PDT 2013

For what it's worth, here's a different reading (mine, in this case) of
Proctor's remark: 

"To speak of chord inversions rather than of counterpoint is to once again
privilege the vertical above the horizontal aspects of music of the time.
This privileging is problematic from many standpoints, and it seems we've
been having conversation about this for a long time."

I'm not Gregory Proctor, and I'm not at all trying to claim some special
knowledge of what he intended to say.  This is simply how I understood his
remark when I read it.

As for this list, I contribute very rarely, but somewhat more frequently
read others' conversations as they unfold here.  I personally will miss
Proctor's voice.

Hali Fieldman, Ph.D.
Associate Professor and Coordinator of Music Theoru
UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance
University of Missouri - Kansas City

On 4/22/13 10:45 AM, "ovaisala at siba.fi" <ovaisala at siba.fi> wrote:

>Dear list,
>Reacting to my previous post, Gregory Proctor wrote:
>> I knew people would choose to miscast my remarks. I should know
>> better by now that lists like these have sunk bit by bit to the
>> level of comments on political blogs. I give up. Goodbye list.
>Unfortunately prof. Proctor seems thus to have chosen to abandon the
>list owing to my humorous comment. I regret this; it was certainly not
>my intention.
>I by no means "chose to" misunderstand his assertion that "inversion
>is overrated in classical music." I genuinely found no sensible way to
>understand it and thought that perhaps taking this assertion at its
>face value and drawing conclusions from it ad absurdum might provoke
>him to explain what he actually meant. Unfortunately his post implies
>that this will not be the case.
>Perhaps I should not have tried to be humorous or ironic (especially
>in a foreign language, whose nuances I am far from mastering), but my
>attempts to find a serious approach to that assertion simply failed. I
>thought that in principle it might mean either literally "inversions
>were overrated by classical composers" or "approaches to classical
>music overrate inversions." In my previous post, I played with the
>consequences of the first option. But the second option also seems ?
>how should I say ? utterly problematic, if we consider how an approach
>making no distinction between "root position" and "inversion" would
>succeed in describing the organization, say, in a paradigmatic
>classical piece such as Bach's C-major Prelude from WTC I.
>Hence, what I hoped to do in my post was to provoke greater clarity in
>postings, but clearly my approach was a failure.
>Olli Väisälä
>Sibelius Academy
>University of the Arts, Helsinki
>ovaisala at siba.fi
>Smt-talk mailing list
>Smt-talk at lists.societymusictheory.org

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