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IN THE DIVISION OF COMPOSITION, MUSICOLOGY, AND THEORY OF THE COLLEGE-CONSERVATORY OF MUSIC

by Hardin, Gary Joe

Abstract (Summary)
The term "vagrant" in the title refers to the notion of someone who is simply a homeless vagabond, not with the negative connotations often attributed such as "derelict" or "hobo." Thus, every human could be thought of as a vagrant when considered in the sense that life is brief and one's time on earth, in a way of thinking, "transient." In a traditional theological explanation it could be said that one brings to their short-lived existence a hope for something better in the world to come - life after death. Thus, this vagrant's dance can be understood as a picture of life. A dance has various steps and gestures, which combine to carry a different significance within the larger scope. The vagrant's dance represents events in the life of this homeless vagabond where the predictable ebb and flow is disrupted from time to time. All humans suffer tragedy, sorrow, disappointment, stress - things that break up the expected patterns of day-to-day existence. Someone once suggested that life is a sequence of difficulties with occasional periods of repose, joy or euphoria that sustain us through the tough times. The concept of The Vagrant's Dance strives to portray a picture of this dualism - predictability and disruption, consonance and dissonance, harmony and cacophony that, hopefully, carry a greater significance within the larger scope of the work. Deriving its form from the idea of juxtaposing sections of contrasting styles, there is an alternation between sections of dissonant, serious music and sections of lighter, rhythmic music. This rhythmic energy is rooted in rhythms inspired by American popular music and jazz. The pitches of the more severe sections are derived using dodecaphonic technique combined with the usage of canon and imitation. The twelve-tone row also forms a melody used as the subject for a lengthy imitative/fugal section in the middle of the work. The diatonic sections are constructed from modal scales - particularly D Dorian used for its characteristic sound. The instrumentation is for triple winds and brass, timpani, percussion, harp, piano and strings.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:

School:University of Cincinnati

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:orchestra composition

ISBN:

Date of Publication:01/01/2000

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