The Phrase: Decoding Music's Basic Unit - Fall 2019 - Dr. Katelyn Bouska
(The Phrase FA19)

In a musician’s vocabulary, the term ‘phrase’ is perhaps one of the most commonly encountered and thus runs the risk of being taken for granted. However, the phrase is intrinsically more than the sum of its component parts—melody, harmony and rhythm. Over the passage of time the musical phrase becomes a depository of the sounds of its native language and culture as well as their formative influences on the composer’s artistic psychology.

In this course, we will examine how the development of musical phrases grow out of language characteristics, aesthetics of the time period and by the composer’s own personal communicative idiosyncrasies. Through the study of features of common Western languages, composer’s letters/personal writings and cultural context, the course cultivates an informed and confident musical intuition through standard and non-standard repertoire ranging from early Baroque to the present.

AV requirements: I will need to play audio and video in the majority of classes.