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BA Music and Drama / Course details
Year of entry: 2022
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Course unit details:
Tonality: Form and Function
|Unit level||Level 1|
|Teaching period(s)||Semester 1|
|Available as a free choice unit?||Yes|
This is an analytical course principally concerned with the musical language of the Viennese classics (Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven). The course is divided into three broad areas: harmonic analysis, thematic analysis and analysis of form. It principally draws on the theories of Arnold Schoenberg, with supporting material by more recent scholars. It also explores Beethoven’s own approach to these three areas, by studying his musical sketches and how he set about composing.
This course unit is available as free choice, but please note pre-requisite of A Level Music or Grade VIII Theory or equivalent.
- To increase the student’s understanding of the musical language, structure and expressive content of tonal music, and so to enhance his/her response to it as a listener and performer.
- Make sense of a composer’s sketches in relation to finished compositions.
Knowledge and understanding
- Understand the harmonic, thematic and formal structure of tonal music.
- Understand the basic methods of composition of tonal music.
- Comprehend theoretical nomenclature, assess its relevance and apply to a specific musical extract.
- Annotate a musical score with relevant analytical symbols and terminology and describe in prose.
Transferable skills and personal qualities
- Demonstrate enhanced analytical skills
- Demonstrate aesthetic awareness
- Use technical vocabulary for descriptive purposes
- Exhibit an attention to detail
- Analytical skills
- Analysing repertoire, texts and other materials
- Project management
- Time management skills (preparing for exam throughout the semester)
- Problem solving
- Creative problem solving
- Attention to detail; Assimilation of information
- written feedback on examination
- additional one-to-one feedback (during the consultation hour or by making an appointment)
- Beethoven, Ludwig van, The 35 Piano Sonatas, ed. Barry Cooper, vol. I (London: ABRSM, 2007).
- Caplin, William, Classical Form: A Theory of Formal Functions for the Instrumental Music of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven (New York: OUP, 1990).
- Cooper, Barry, The Creation of Beethoven’s 35 Piano Sonatas (Abingdon, 2017).
- Rosen, Charles, The Classical Style: Haydn, Beethoven, Mozart (London: Faber, 1971); Sonata Forms (New York: Norton, 1980).
- Schoenberg, Arnold, Fundamentals of Musical Composition, ed. Gerald Strang and Leonard Stein (London: Faber, 1961); Structural Foundations of Harmony, ed. Leonard Stein (London: Norgate, 1954).
|Scheduled activity hours|
|Supervised time in studio/wksp||4|
|Independent study hours|
|Camden Reeves||Unit coordinator|
|Barry Cooper||Unit coordinator|