Professors Oppens & Eckardt
MUS 81504 20th- and 21st-Century Performance Practice, Spring 2013
Designed for both composers and performers, the course explores the performance of 20th- and 21st-century music. Weekly meetings will be devoted to the coaching and critique of both student composition assignments and representative works. The class will culminate with a mandatory public concert on May 14 in Elebash Hall featuring important repertoire works and music composed by the students.
Professor William Rothstein
MUS 82502 History of Theory II
This seminar covers the history of Western music theory from ca. 1600 to ca. 1940. Intensive readings in primary and secondary sources (all in English) are supplemented by lectures. Students write a term paper on a theorist not covered extensively in class. There is a midterm translation exercise (German, French, and Italian) and a final exam.
Professor Peter Manuel
Music 83000: Popular Music in Cross-Cultural Perspectives
This course combines conceptual and analytic approaches to the study of popular music with explorations of diverse selected genres, emphasizing music cultures outside the Euro-American mainstream and distinct from those (such as Hispanic Caribbean music) that are covered in other seminars. While not attempting to provide a comprehensive survey of world popular musics, the course also aims to generate some familiarity with a representative spectrum of non-Euro-American genres diverse in style, historical era, and locale. We are interested both in socio-musical aspects as well as formal analytical approaches to the music genres studied. Thematic focuses include: Frankfurt School critiques in global perspectives, gender issues, urbanization, music and socio-political movements, media studies perspectives, globalization and diasporic dynamics, and the power dynamics of musical interactions between the West and “the rest.” Music cultures covered will include Africa, the Middle East, Greece, India, East and Southeast Asia, Mexico, and South America. A term paper and one or two short written assignments will be required.
Professor Stephen Blum
Music 83400. Musical relations between African Americans and Euro-Americans in the U.S., 1865-1965.
The seminar interrogates prominent (and less prominent) interpretations of the musical relations between African Americans and European Americans in the first century after the Civil War. The “interrogation” is “enhanced” through analysis of both the theoretical presuppositions and the practical consequences of the various approaches. The seminar in not intended as a chronological survey, and some familiarity with the music history of the U.S. in this period is highly desirable. The workload includes weekly reading and listening assignments (to be discussed in class by each participant), small exercises, and a final paper on an approved topic.
Open only to doctoral students (in any program). Not open to auditors.
Prof. Joseph N. Straus
MUS 84000. Introduction to Disability Studies in the Humanities.
(Note: This course is listed under both Music and IDS)
An introduction to the emerging, interdisciplinary field of Disability Studies in the Humanities. Topics will include “Nineteenth-Century Networks of Care,” “Narratives of Disability,” “Intellectual Disability,” Performing Disability,” “Disability and Sexuality,” “Autism as Disability Culture,” “‘Mental Illness’ and Post-Psychiatry,” and “The Work of Disability Memoir.” Guest lecturers include CUNY faculty (Sarah Chinn and Talia Schafer) and three of the leading figures in Disability Studies (Lennard Davis, Rachel Adams, and Thomas Couser). The topics, instructors, and students in this course will represent a variety of fields within the humanities. Enrollment by permission of the instructor: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Professor Shaugn O’Donnell
MUS 84100 “Syncopated Pandemonium”: Pink Floyd 1967-1979
An exploration of Pink Floyd’s catalog from The Piper at the Gates of Dawn (1967) through The Wall (1979), tracing their musical path from psychedelic house band of the late 60s London Underground to theatrical performers of late 70s arena rock. We will focus on close readings of the band’s studio albums, but we will also examine their live performances and solo projects. Coursework will involve weekly listening, reading, and brief response papers, and culminate in a substantial conference-style final paper. Limited to doctoral students in music, or with special permission of the instructor.
Professor Stephen Blum
MUS 86000 Seminar in Musicology: Music of Charles Ives
The seminar considers issues raised through (1) each seminar participant’s engagement with specific works by Ives, and (2) studies of the reception history of Ives’s music over the past century, with attention to changes in performance practice as well as to critical, analytic, and biographical writing. With respect to (1), students are encouraged to write on their experiences of Ives’s music in whatever styles they find appropriate. With respect to (2), attention to the history of performance practice casts light on shortcomings of the critics and historians. The seminar also explores ways in which efforts toward understanding Ives’s career and accomplishments can benefit from reflection on the careers of some of his contemporaries in the cultural and political life of the United States. Proficiency in reading musical notation is expected. Open only to doctoral students (in any program). Not open to auditors.
Professor Richard Kramer
MUS 86600. Beethoven, Schubert and the Consequences of Enlightenment.
In the political environment of Europe after the Revolution, the esprit of Enlightenment in literature and the arts transmogrified into something very different. Conceived in this fraught environment “between Revolution and Restoration” (in the title of a recent collection of essays), the music of Beethoven found its voice. Composing against the grain of this magisterial music, Schubert sought expression in a renewal of the poetic and in what Adorno would problematize as Lyrik. Placing the works of these two composers alongside one another, we’ll investigate issues of genre, voice (and agency), compositional process (and sketch and fragment); of “late style”and Romantik; and probe the encounters with Goethe. We’ll read the classic studies, from E. T. A. Hoffmann and A. B. Marx through Adorno and Dahlhaus, and engage more recent critical controversies. Among the works to be studied are: [Beethoven:] Piano Sonata in D minor, Opus 31, no. 2; Leonore/Fidelio; String Quartet in F minor, Opus 95; An die ferne Geliebte; Missa solemnis; String Quartet in B-flat major, Opus 130 [with the grosse Fuge]; 33 Veränderungen über einen Walzer, Opus 120. [Schubert:] Fantasy in C major, Opus 15 (“Wanderer”); String Quartet in D minor, D 810 and Der Tod und das Mädchen (Claudius), D 531; Piano Sonata in G major, Opus 78, D 894; String Quintet in C, Opus 163, D 956; settings of Heine and Rellstab in the so-called Schwanengesang (1828); Der Graf von Gleichen (unfinished opera of 1827/28).