Music, School of


First Advisor

Stanley V. Kleppinger

Date of this Version



Wilson, Sydney L. "Blurred Lines: An Analysis of Karel Husa's Music for Prague, 1968 Using Fuzzy Serialism." MM Thesis, University of Nebraska, 2023.


A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Music, Major: Music, Under the Supervision of Professor Stanley V. Kleppinger. Lincoln, Nebraska: April, 2023

Copyright © 2023 Sydney L. Wilson


The wind band work Music for Prague, 1968 by Karel Husa is a well-respected work that has withstood the test of time. Husa, a native of then-Czechoslovakia, composed the piece in less than a year from the United States. The piece serves as a method of expressing his feelings regarding the invasion of his homeland where his family was still residing. Husa accomplished this expression through the use of a nationalistic theme, the Hussite War Song, and his own integration of twelve-tone serialism.

This study looks at pre-existing literature surrounding Husa’s use of serialism, including an analysis by Husa himself. It aims to provide a thorough analysis of the work, primarily areas that have been previously mentioned to contain no tone-rows. This study presents an understanding of serialism using the method of fuzzy serialism. This analytical tool will provide a method of analyzing works that are believed to possess some degree of serial techniques that cannot be clearly understood through strict serial analysis. Fuzzy serialism will be applied to the second and fourth movements of the work, highlighting thematic materials and the loose application of serialism within them. Through my analysis of Music for Prague, 1968 I aim to guide wind band conductors toward Husa’s use of serial techniques and thematic materials for a more effective interpretation and performance of the piece. I also propose the use of fuzzy serialism to be applied to other quasi-serial works of many genres outside of the analyses provided within this study.

Advisor: Stanley V. Kleppinger

Included in

Music Commons