Harmonic Thinking in Performance - Noam Sivan
(Harmonic Thinking (Spring 2018))

This course offers tools that translate harmonic awareness into making informed interpretive choices. The harmonic component of music relates to many other parameters: melody, rhythm, texture, form, instrumentation, performance markings, expression, and character. Preparing harmonic reductions at various levels of passages from the students’ own repertoire will serve as a basis for understanding the harmonic structure of music: chromatic notes that deserve special attention; the presence of forward-moving or ambiguous progressions; mid-phrase expansions versus cadential punctuations; issues of harmonic rhythm and hyper-meter; and so on. At the concluding phase, the students go back to the original piece and think about possible interpretive possibilities, based on increased harmonic awareness. As they learn to analyze the music, they gain authority and become more informed performing artists.