Pre-organised session - Interpreting and Listening to the Music of Debussy
Chair: Lukas Haselböck
Since the 1960s and 70s, music theory and analysis have been affected by performative and perceptional turns in multiple ways and have subsequently developed a variety of new methodological approaches aiming at performative and perceptional perspectives. This session tries to continue this ‘tradition’ and to add some new insights. The analytical focus lies on the music of Debussy. Due to the fact, that Debussy’s music seems to be surprisingly resistant against the application of conventional methods of music analysis, perspectives of perception and performance have always been considered. Authors like Deliége 1987, Imberty 1987 or Spampinato 2008 analysed works like Debussy’s Syrinx from the perspective of perception. Performance-sensitive researches have been added in the field of vocal (Bergeron 2010), piano (Johnson 1987, Howat 1996/97, Carlson 1998, Despax 2004) and orchestral music (Trezise 1994, Briscoe 1999, Braus 2000). However, a link to methods of formal and structural analysis is provided only in a few of these analyses. New analytical perspectives could be opened up by intensifying the dialogue between perception-/performance-sensitive and formal/structural analysis. In this session, this aim will be realized by focussing on the aspects of musical prosody and vocal contours, on musical humour and bodily experience, on sound quality and its relationship to form and listening, on musical expectancy and recollection and on questions of performance style. Thereby, it might be possible to deal with the complex ambiguities which characterize Debussy’s music on different levels.