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A performer's guide to creating a listening road map: Applications to late twentieth-century solo flute compositions by American women composers Joyce Mekeel and Jennifer Higdon

Deena K Reedy, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

Listening to new music from the twentieth century carries with it many stigmas and pre-conceived notions (e.g. that the music will sound unpleasant or that there is no order or structure to contemporary works). In order to overcome these barriers, the following document provides a template to assist the performer in presenting late twentieth-century works to an average audience (i.e. persons who have limited opportunities to hear the classics and have little or no musical education background). Like research is examined for its relevance to the process of listening to contemporary works, insight into the growth of skepticism toward the new is provided, and the importance of listening in order to develop the appropriate expectations for twentieth-century works is explored to help create the template or Listening Road Map. This Road Map is then applied to the lecture recital, illustrating its usefulness in presenting late twentieth-century compositions to an average audience. Information included in the lecture is structured in such a way as to assist the average listener in understanding and accepting these late twentieth-century works by eradicating the preconceptions mentioned above. The detailed analysis of two solo flute works of the late twentieth century by American women composers—Joyce Mekeel's The Shape of Silence and Jennifer Higdon's rapid fire—is the beginning of the process of helping an audience to listen intelligently to these kinds of works. The Listening Road Map (described in chapter one) is used as a model for paring down this analysis in order to present these works in an accessible manner (described in chapter three). Appendices with original research about the compositions (based on phone interviews and email correspondence) are included. A partially annotated bibliography concludes the document. ^

Subject Area

Music|Education, Music

Recommended Citation

Reedy, Deena K, "A performer's guide to creating a listening road map: Applications to late twentieth-century solo flute compositions by American women composers Joyce Mekeel and Jennifer Higdon" (2002). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI3059966.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI3059966

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