Return to search

Structural ordering in contemporary music: the perceptibility factor reconsidered

The multi-faceted nature of twentieth-century music is anything but familiar to

listeners who are accustomed to hearing Western music based on ideas steeped in the

classical tradition. The emergence of new tonalities and atonality as well as new

temporalities challenged and revolutionized commonly accepted notions of musical

sound and musical motion. The surge of new music characterized by the treatment of

sound as independent entity, the absence of functional tonality and the dissolution of

metric order has created new demands on the perceptual-cognition abilities of the


The perception of atonal musical works has been a subject of interest for many

scholars in the field of music cognition. The findings of recent studies addressing this

issue have pointed to the presence of salient features as an aid to the comprehension

of relationships between musical events in an atonal composition. Salient features

which effectively serve as structural cues include change/contrast and repetition, with

the latter emerging as the most frequently used and easily acknowledged form of


An examination of the role of repetition in the music of the post-serial American

composer George Crumb sheds light on how repetition, a common ingredient in many

conventional models of organization, is able to operate in atonal pieces as structural

cue to patterns underpinning the musical form. The investigation further reveals the

possible role of repetition, where it is associated with timbre, as clue to structural

direction in compositions that subscribe to the contemporary notion of musical

motion. / published_or_final_version / Music / Master / Master of Philosophy

  1. 10.5353/th_b4819953
  2. b4819953
Date January 2011
CreatorsLo, Ting-cheung., 盧定彰.
ContributorsChan, HY, Biancorosso, G
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Source SetsHong Kong University Theses
Detected LanguageEnglish
RightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works., Creative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License
RelationHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)

Page generated in 0.003 seconds