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Department of M usic MUSIC newsletter
Vol. 12, No. 1/Winter 2012 Time & Micro-Time: Beaudoin Uses Scores to Teach, Compose
Music Building North Yard Harvard University Cambridge, MA 02138 617-495-2791 www.music.fas.harvard.edu INSIDE 2 Letter from the Chair 3 Faculty News 4 Undergraduate News: Matt Aucoin's First Nights Premiere 5 Christian Rivera: Music, Law, Dance & Football 6 Finnish Heavy Metal 7 Open Source Musical Literacy Software Developed 8 Alumni News 9 Library News 10 Calendar of Spring Events 11 Graduate Student News 12 Yannatos Remembered Department Chair Alexander Rehding Director of Administration Nancy Shafman Newsletter Editor Lesley Bannatyne
Richard Beaudoin was appointed Preceptor in Music in 2011 after a three-year tenure as Lecturer on Music at Harvard, for which he was awarded the Harvard University Certificate of Distinction in Teaching six times. Beaudoin is a composer whose latest works pioneer a compositional technique involving micro-temporal measurements of recorded performances.
"If you look at the finest examples of any style of music, you find that what they share is this: their most breathtaking passages seem to arrive at perfectly calibrated moments in time. And it's this placement--this pacing--that makes them vivid. Across all time periods, the mark of a great composer is not simply to create memorable musical objects, but to control the relationship between the musical objects and the flow of time. Late Beethoven, for example: he takes the most ordinary thing of all--a rest--and places it between chords that are pregnant with tension. It makes the silence electric. If he had placed the silence elsewhere, the passage would read as ordinary." Newly appointed Preceptor Richard Beaudoin teaches both theory (Fundamentals of Tonal Music I, Music 2; Theory II, Music150b) and composition (Introduction to Composition, Music 4; Proseminar in Composition, Music 160r). Since arriving at Harvard in 2008, his compositions have been performed at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Laeiszhalle in Hamburg, the Brucknerhaus in Linz and the Konzerthaus in Vienna; he received
of the composer. "A large part of my teaching is taking a very close look at a piece as it unfolds in time; for example, not just an arrival to the key of the mediant, but when and how this key is reached. Theorists often like to look at multiple pieces and locate similar structures. Often these comparisons overlook the pacing." For Beaudoin the idea of pacing--the length of phrases and their organization via cadences, interruptions and overlaps--is important in both his teaching and his composition. Beaudoin's compositional work currently deals with micro-timing. Working with colleagues at the Hochschule in Lucerne, Switzerland, he studies recorded performances, measuring the moment
In both theory and composition classes, my textbooks are always scores. I want to teach about music from music.
Boston Lyric Opera's first-ever commission, and has his work was recently broadcast on Germany's Sьdwestrundfunk 2. "It's important for students to learn pacing directly from composers," says Beaudoin. "In both theory and composition classes, my textbooks are always scores. I want to teach about music from music. I believe that music's most profound lessons come from scores, from the relationships of musical objects in time. No matter what course I am teaching, I try to put students in the position
each note comes into being, at the level of a millisecond (one thousandth of one second). His compositions take this micro-timing information and bring it back into standard notation, allowing him to compose atop and around the micro-timed transcription of another work. "This process combines an ancient form of composition--cantus firmus--with state-of-theart technology in performance science," explains Beaudoin. "Though the micro-timing work began in 2009, there was really no break with my earlier continued on page 2
BEAUDOIN continued compositional style. I've loved Renaissance music since I was young, and my earliest pieces involved cantus firmus procedures. The fact that there was a piece embedded in another fascinated me." "Look at this," says Beaudoin, pulling a large sheet from his file cabinet. "It's a diagram of Martha Argerich playing a Chopin йtude from October 1975. Each of Argerich's eighth notes are charted in tiny fractions of time, and seen from 1/1000-scale each event has a unique length, often diverging wildly from the proportions seen in the score. Her timings would have all been different on a different day. What I care about is capturing this single moment in time." Beaudoin transcribes a specific performance into notation, and then uses it as material in a new work. Music philosophers who study his pieces note that when played, his scores allow a performer to interpret upon another performer's interpretation. "I have a piece based on a 1931 recording of Debussy's "la fille aux cheveux de lin" by Alfred Cortot [The Artist and his Model I--La fille floutйe (2010)]," says Beaudoin. "When a pianist plays it, they're interacting with a 1931 performance by Cortot, not via sampling or electronics, but by reading a score in which that performance is inscribed. The analogy is with photography: recording temporal events onto pieces of paper." In the classroom though, Beaudoin doesn't teach micro-timing composition to his students. He believes it's important for them to learn their own identity first before intertwining their own music with that of another composer. "It's important for a composer who's working with micro-timing to understand that their pieces aren't good because they have embedded in them an earlier piece of music. I am always working to make a great piece that stands on it's own." v 2
A Letter from the Chair
Where normally the sound of scales, vocal warm-ups, or filigree passages from Chopin wafts up through the department building, a very different kind of noise was heard over the summer:
the busy hammering, drilling, and sawing was an audible sign that the practice rooms received a
comprehensive facelift. The basement area was completely redesigned, and where previously 19
practice rooms offered cramped space for instrumentalists and singers, the new rooms, (7 grand
piano rooms, 6 upright, plus two classrooms equipped with grand pianos and a quartet-sized en-
semble rehearsal room), are bright and spacious state-of-the-art facilities. All rooms are properly
soundproofed, to the great relief of librarians and administrators who worked directly above the
old practice rooms--and within full auditory range of any noise coming from them.
Two of the practice rooms are outfitted with electronic equipment that can be used to modify
the acoustics. Invisible speakers, hidden behind the wall panels, provide additional reverberation
that mimicks venues such as a concert hall or cathedral, to provide a more realistic impression of
the room acoustics of a variety of performance spaces. Laptop computers can be plugged into these
rehearsal rooms to play back prerecorded music, in a twenty-first-century version of "music-minus-one."
New practice rooms are the first stage of the renovations of some of the key facilities in the music
building. In the second stage, Paine Hall is outfitted with air-conditioning. This is long overdue:
the hall had been unusable during most of the summer months due to sweltering temperatures.
Now the hall will be available as a concert and lecture space throughout the year.
The temporary adjustments we had to make to accommodate these renovations were compli-
cated. Since the entire wing of the music building was under construction, including the lecture
rooms and several faculty offices, we needed to outsource all our fall classes and seminars and re-
accommodate some department members' work spaces, to the basement of Lowell Lecture Hall, the
secluded seminar rooms in Sanders Theater, Holden Chapel, and other spaces in the terra incognita
that lies beyond the immediate vicinity of the music department. Nancy Shafman and the rest of
our wonderful staff came up with practicable and in some cases creative solutions to make sure the
regular departmental business would continue
to run smoothly.
These renovations are part of the uni-
versity's efforts to maintain and update their
facilities around campus. We continue to ask
the university for an addition to the department
building to accommodate our growing needs
as our long-term goal. But these renovation
works are very encouraging first steps since the
financial shutdown three years ago.
As the university renovates and upgrades
our music-making facilities in the practice
rooms and Paine Hall, our equipment requires
similar updates: many of our piano benches, for
example, have acquired the patina of antiquity
and are badly in need of upgrades.
[They're] bigger, brighter, prettier,
All these renovations come at an auspicious
cleaner, and cheerier...I actually find myself wanting to raise my game be-
time. Our revised undergraduate curriculum, now in its third year, offers expanded options in musical performance. The new curriculum
cause I can imagine I'm playing in a professional setting or in front of an
pursues innovative ways to integrate sound and musical interpretation and to place these front and center of teaching and learning
in the music
audience. I concentrate better, and department.
perform better.--Mable Chan, '12
Our new courses include a number of exciting offerings. Next semester, for instance,
Professor Robert Levin will teach a handson class on classical improvisation. Professor Richard Wolf has incorporated practical lessons on the kora, a West Africa
n harp, in his recent course Music 97c. Federico Cortese has developed classes on Mozart's Figaro and on Verdi's Falstaff that combine the performance of key scenes with analytical and interpretive tasks, while Andrew Clark examines a range of choral repertoires, currently twentieth-century passion settings, from a practical and scholarly viewpoint. Professor Hans Tutschku's students composed music in response to artworks from the Sackler museum and performed their compositions at the museum. Two new courses in jazz harmony and Jazz Improvisation
, taught this year by Daniel Henderson, are quickly becoming staples of the curriculum. And graduate student Rowland Moseley has developed a brilliant software application (see story on page 9) that is going to revolutionize the keyboard component of Music 51. Moreover, our new affiliation with the dance center has made possible a number of new courses that examine the interaction between music and movement. All these offerings complement
in the sense that the new practice rooms are now completely soundproof. On the contrary, there is plenty of music-making going on in the music department, now even more than before. We will ensure that it continues this way.
All these renovations come at an auspicious time: our revised undergraduate curriculum, now in its third year, offers expanded options in musical performance.
This fall, Preceptor Richard Beaudoin completed The Artist and his Model IV--la tradition franзaise, composed for Kцln-based clarinetist Carl Rosman, The Artist and his Model V--Brыlage, composed for the New-York based saxophonist Eliot Gattegno, and Now anything can hang at any angle, a solo piano work based on micro-timings of Thelonious Monk. Gardner Cowles Associate Professor Suzannah Clark published Analyzing Schubert (Cambridge University Press), in which she explores how the harmonics of Schubert's songs and instrumental sonata forms challenges the theory of tonal and formal order. Walter Bigelow Rosen Professor of Music Chaya Czernowin's piece Zohar Iver (Blind Radiance) had its premiere in Bern, Switzerland. Commissioned for the Bern Philharmonic and Ensemble Nikel with conductor Mario Venzago, the piece won high acclaim from both audiences and critics alike. Her 2011 solo album Shifting Gravity received more then a dozen positive reviews including those in the Guardian, Irish Times, Neue Zьricher Zeitung, Mundo Clasico, Diverdi, Neue Zeitschrift fur Musik, Stuttgarter Zeitung, and Haaretz. Chaya is now writing a piece for Poul Skjшlstrup Larsen (organ) and Christina MeiЯner (cello) to be performed throughout Europe in 2012/13. In fall 2011 Lovesong for chamber ensemble was performed by Red Light Green Light (New York), Dal Niente (Chicago) and Notabu ensemble neue musik (Duesseldorf). Czernowin additionally gave the 2011 Barlow Lecture at Brigham Young University. Morton B. Knafel Professor Thomas F. Kelly continued on page 4
and expand the tried-and-tested courses that make up the music concentration, always with the view to giving our students the best education possible. We are always looking for new ways in which we can support our concentrators in their endeavors as musical performers. Harvard's music department does not have full-time performance faculty, but we are currently exploring ways in which we can better support and subsidize the cost of instrumental tuition specifically for our concentrators. We welcome your support to enable us to make this a reality soon. The mythical story whereby music, like Victorian children, "should be seen but not heard" in Harvard's music department [often attributed to Leonard Bernstein], is only true
"We are always looking for new ways in which we can support our concentrators in their endeavors as musical performers. Harvard's music department does not have full-time performance faculty, but we are currently exploring ways in which we can better support and subsidize the cost of instrumental tuition specifically for our concentrators."
We Need Your Help Please support our efforts to increase the amount of financial assistance our concentrators can receive to help pay tuition for their instrument lessons. An envelope has been provided in this newsletter, and any kindness on your part would be greatly appreciated. Checks should be made payable to the Music Department, and check "Other," specifying Instrumental Tuition, on the donor envelope. If you are receiving this newsletter electronically, please mail your donation to Music Department, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138.
Faculty News continued from page 3 published The Sources of Beneventan Chant (Ashgate). Because the Beneventan Chant was suppressed during the eleventh century, the music survives mostly in fragments and palimpsests, and Kelly's book recounts the process of restoring the repertory. Dwight P. Robinson, Jr. Professor Robert Levin published Mozart, Three Movements for Piano Trio, K. 442: (a) in D minor, Fr 1785e; (b) in G major, Fr 1786c; (c) in D major, Fr 1787f and Mozart, Horn Concerto in D major, K. 412 (to be issued by Breitkopf & Hдrtel, Wiesbaden, Germany, in early 2012). He also recently published Haydn's Complete Piano Sonatas (Wiener Urtext Edition), vols. 3-4, issued with notes on interpretation and suggested embellishments and cadenzas by Levin. In Reno, Nevada, Levin gave talks on "Improvising Mozart" and "Who Cares if classical music
Dies?" Most recently he gave three performances of Mozart, Piano Concerto #21 in C major, K. 467 with the Sarasota Orchestra, Grant Llewellyn, conductor; a trio recital at Mozartwoche in Salzburg, Austria, on Mozart's piano, with Frank Stadler (on Mozart's violin) and Peter Sigl (cello); and two Mozart trios, K. 502 and 548, variations for piano, K. 500, and the world premiere of Violin Sonata in C, K. 403 (with finale completed by Levin). Willam Powell Mason Professor Carol Oja published "Studying U.S. Music in the 21st Century: A Colloquium," co-authored and co-edited with Charles Hiroshi Garrett in JAMS; "Reappraising Walter Piston" in NewMusicBox; and "Mary Zimmerman's Candide, Prelude, Fugue, & Riffs" in the Leonard Bernstein Newsletter, all out this fall. Oja spoke at the panel, "Researching Broadway Legacies," at the 2011 San Francisco AMS conference and chaired the session, "Bounding American Music." She also appeared on WGBH's "Callie Crosley Show" to discuss the American Reperatory Theatre's production of Porgy and Bess. Fanny Peabody Professor Alexander Rehding is a proud father of twins. His long-awaited (and long) Oxford Handbook of Neo-Riemannian Music Theories (co-edited with Edward Gollin PhD '01) has been published. While on leave in fall 2011, James Edward Ditson Professor Anne C. Shreffler conducted research in the Hanns Eisler Archive of the Akademie der Kьnste for a book project. She presented "Who Owns the German Past?" at the
Emmy and Benjamin Conway-Rehding keynote panel of the conference, "Music in Divided Germany," Berkeley, California, and collaborated on the project "Geschichte der Musikalischen Interpretation" (History of Musical Interpretation) being developed at the Staatliches Institut fьr Musikforschung, Berlin, where Shreffler is on the Research Advisory Board. Professor Shreffler continued to advise the Anton Webern Collected Works Edition, an ongoing project of the Universitдt Basel, and was elected Member at Large of the Cold War
and Music Study Group
of the AMS. Professor Richard K. Wolf invited West African musician and griot Morikeba Kouyate to work with Wolf's 97C (Music History and Repertory) students during the fall term. Kouyate is a master of the kora, a 21-string instrument
made from a decorated gourd covered with cow skin that is traditional to the Mandinka people. Wolf, along with other musicians and the students of Music 97C, joined Kouyate on stage for sections of a sold out public concert at the New College Theatre in November. Morikeba Kouyate
Undergraduate News Aucoin Presents 2011 First Nights Commission It was Matt Aucoin's day even though it wasn't planned that way. The 2011 First Nights premiere was commissioned from Michael Einziger, composer and lead guitarist of the platinum-selling band Incubus. But Einziger was hospitalized during an Incubus European tour
and couldn't get back to Harvard. The premiere performance date was around the corner, and Professor Kelly suddenly found himself with nothing to premiere. Aucoin, already booked to conduct the Einziger piece, stepped in. He had some sketches for an extended string quartet, he told Kelly, and he thought that if he stayed up all night, he could finish it. He did. "This is the most authentic First Nights experience we've ever had," Professor Kelly announced to the class. "The tasks of composing, preparing parts, recruiting personnel, conducting rehearsals, and producing a first performance--and working against a deadline--are challenges that we know from other composers' experiences in First Nights. Now we have the privilege of watching some of our contemporaries trying to accomplish the same thing. It will be a near thing, but I think it will work." Aucoin's 11th-hour commission is also a happy piece of serendipity: when Matt was ten he'd skip Elementary School
to come to Sanders to listen to Kelly's First Nights class. The first classical concert he ever heard was at Sanders as well--Beethoven's Ninth. A First Reading At the rehearsal staged two days before the premiere, Kelly's First Nights students packed Sanders Theatre to hear a cold reading of the Aucoin piece. "This is the first time anyone's going to hear this, including me," Aucoin told the audience. Then, turning to the group of a dozen of Harvard's student string players: "Let's tune." Aucoin, conducting with a pen (he'd forgotten his baton) led the musicians through a rehearsal: "Keep the crescendo absolutely steady. Try not to back off. These notes trail off like efforts that have failed."
Aucoin conducting the Dunster House Opera. Harvard Gazette photo by Jon Chase. The themes in Aucoin's new work, he told the crowd, came from an opera he's writing based on the story of Hart Crane, an openly gay poet who lived in New York in the 1920s, and died young. "Some themes have a sadness to them," explains Aucoin. "There's a striving, then toppling off before a successful peak." Music for Mike On the morning of the premiere, Professor Kelly introduces the piece; it's now titled "Music for Mike." The players have had a rehearsal or two, and the audience has swelled. Aucoin strides out from the wings, lifts his baton, and the ensemble of 13 plays a strikingly beautiful, seemingly flawless twelve minutes of music. After the last note, the audience cheers. As Aucoin slips off the stage, Kelly addresses his First Nights 2011 class for the final time. "I am always amazed by my First Nights students," he confides. "I know that many of you out there are not going to become musicians. You may become doctors, or go get an MBA, or try to become president. I am always impressed that you would use your valuable time to take a course on music, to answer the question, `Would my life be better with art in it?' "We are all here today to celebrate live performance. Here's something that didn't exist a few days ago. It began, it was practiced, and it happened. If you weren't here you didn't hear it. It belongs to us. We audience members can take some credit for bringing a new piece of art into the world. That is a good thing."
Christian Rivera: Music, Law, Dance, Football
Music as preparation for a law career? Why not, thinks Christian Rivera, '13. Plus a secondary field in history of science
? "I know," he laughs. "Two disparate things, and neither connected to law." Rivera is accustomed to finding the threads that connect two seemingly opposite things. The physicality he needs to perform modern dance in college, for example, is not all that different from the physicality he used to play football. "In high school I was an inside linebacker or offensive guard--the violent positions. My senior year I got bored with gym, took dance and liked it so much I've been with the Harvard Radcliffe Modern Dance Company since my freshman year. It's not that much of a disconnect, really, from football to modern dance. Modern dancers are grounded; it's a key defining feature. Flex, not point; emphasize down, not up. If you've ever seen the Alvin Ailey company, you know--those men are in extremely good shape." Rivera likes the accepting atmosphere of the dance studio. Also, he's interested in its expressive possibilities. "I react to music emotionally and physically, and dance is a good outlet for that," he summarizes. His passion for music is a lifelong one. Rivera has played the piano since the age of seven. Now, he says, he's interested in music's relationship to other arts and how they can be combined to create an emotional experience. "I'm interested in film music, or the music in video games
, in how to create sound that doesn't detract from the images, but adds to them. Like the Star Wars theme--it's memorable, but when you first heard the music, it wasn't so [powerful] that you stopped paying attention to what was going on in the film. "I've taken electroacoustic composition with Hans Tutschku. I think it opens your ear and makes you a better listener; the attention to detail is so strict." Most re- cently, though, Rivera's been fascinated by jazz. "Daniel H e n d e r s o n's jazz harmony
class was probably the favorite class I've taken," he says. "I plan on taking jazz improvisation next term, and a music history course on Coltrane and Miles Davis." Rivera sees his future in law veering towards entertainment law of some kind, maybe venue contracts or agenting. "It's really about how I can reach the most people, how to create commercial art without creating art that's lost its soul. "Music is a passion of mine. But I've always wanted to go to law school. There's no pre-law here at Harvard; you can study what you want. Most pre-law students study government but I didn't want that. Music can hold me. It still keeps my interest." Cannon's Research in Asia Chad Cannon (AB'11) pursued various musical interests in East Asia on a Paine Fellowship this past summer. He began in Fujian Province, China, where he hired a translator to arrange meetings with academics and professional musicians, most of whom are specialists in the genre Nanyin, related to Okinawan both in its music instrumentation and linguistics. He then spent a week in mainland Japan, visiting the National Theater in Tokyo, and hearing performances of taiko drumming, Noh and Kabuki, and three days in Korea, watching Korean traditional theater at the National performing arts
Center. In Okinawa he met many sanshin players and visited his contacts at the Prefectural University for the Arts and at the National Theater in Urasoe City. Cannon was able to deliver copies of his thesis to those who had helped him during his studies last summer. A performance of his thesis composition will likely take place in Singapore in March 2013 with the Asian Contemporary Ensemble. Rabinowitz wins Competition Danielle Galler Rabinowitz (Harvard '14NEC '15) won both the State and Eastern Division Music Teachers National Association Composition Competitions and is also a National Finalist in the 2011-2012 Young Artist division of the the MTNA Composition Competition.
The Authentic in Finnish Heavy Metal: Blending Ethnography with Music Theory
Her interest in heavy metal music began when Olivia Lucas was an undergraduate and a friend gave her the album "Oceanborn" by the band Nightwish. She was first attracted to the energy and intensity of metal, but since becoming a student of music, Lucas has honed her enthusiasm into a specialization in Nordic, and especially Finnish, heavy metal. She was intrigued by the folk elements she found such as Vikings, trolls, and themes from the Finnish epic poem, The Kalevala. She began investigating heavy metal music that had a strong emphasis on folkloristically authentic musical language. "The kantele, for example, is a zitherlike stringed instrument that's a traditional Finnish instrument. Some bands have used it--amplified, imitated, or electronicized-- in their music." Lucas is now focused on how folk songs manifest in Finnish heavy metal, and the role the music plays in national identity. "It may represent a continuation of the Kalevala tradition," she theorizes, "which did not exist as such until Elias Lцnnrot, an academic, came along and arranged existing folk songs and poems into a semi-coherent plot. I see the way metal music uses folk elements as a continuation of a tradition of adapting materials for one's own aesthetic goals." Heavy metal music emerged in the 1970s and 1980s in America and Britain. By the 1990s it had proliferated into numerous subgenres and spread around the world. "Strong heavy metal traditions exist in Sweden and Norway as well, but there are variations in style," explains Lucas. "Norway, for example, is still trying to shed its association with `black metal' and its attendant racism and message of white supremacy. There are Viking themes in Sweden's metal scene, but my instinct is that they're generally less specific. There's some tightly engineered, strong music coming out of Sweden, though--their studios are on the forefront." Scandinavian countries
, Lucas thinks, may be especially fertile ground for folkinfluenced metal music. "There's a Romanticism that didn't die out after 1800s--the Viking or heroic ideal of riding into battle, having no fear, the ideal of Valhalla. These themes all lend themselves
Finnish metal band Ensiferum, one of the bands who draw on folklore to create their music. Current music theory language doesn't have a lot of the necessary structures in place yet. For example, how do you analyze screamed vocals?
to heavy metal treatment. But in Finland's case, it also has to do with the relative youth of the nation. Finland didn't become its own country until 1917. Drawing on the epic folklore of the land's distant past gives the music--and the nation--a historical gravitas. They continue to struggle with their own ideas of nationality and what constitutes the Finnish heritage, and anti-immigration politics have been on the rise in the Nordic countries
in recent years. While these bands are rarely poitical in an active sense, they are still participating in a wider discussion about national identity." Lucas is looking at the music ethnographically, but also as a music theorist. "I've been thinking more about how to bring heavy metal and music theory together, especially since reading Esa Lilja's book on heavy metal harmony. As there are not many people who combine heavy metal with music theory, it was really great to be able to meet him this past summer and talk with him," says Lucas. "His approach is to take existing theoretical approaches and show how they can be adapted and adjusted to reveal interesting aspects of heavy metal harmony. Other schol-
ars have talked about metal music's distortion and screamed vocal textures, but treated them as a sort of extra-musical byproduct--surface details that are descriptively salient but not something to be placed at the heart of a systematic theory. I would like to be able to turn this around, and address them as integral to the way heavy metal works as a genre. This ties straight into the very long and large musico-theoretical debate of what is essential to a discussion of music." Olivia Lucas in is her 3rd year of music theory graduate work in the Music Department. She received a Paine Fellowship to travel to Finland this past summer to study both language and the music scene in order to lay some of the groundwork for a thesis that would combine ethnomusicology and music theory in a study of Finnish heavy metal. Please send your news! Email your news, photos, or story ideas to [email protected]
edu or mail them to Newsletter/ Music Building/Harvard University/Cambridge, MA 02138
Open Source Musical Literacy Software Developed at Harvard
GO!FiGURE is a new music literacy app created by Rowland Moseley (who initiated and directed the application's development) and Christopher Johnson-Roberson (who did the technical research, and wrote and compiled the application in HTML5 and Java). The project was funded with a Presidential Instructional Technology Fellowship and supervised by Bill Barthemly of the Academic Technology Group. The app employs several extant elements from non-Harvard creators, all of them open source and freely licensed for non-commercial use, and when it is released in February 2012, this work will be available to the public in the same way. After teaching Music 51 (Theory I), sixthyear graduate music theory student Rowland Moseley saw a need to build a faster relationship between what students heard and what they were writing. The mechanics of music literacy--recognizing notes, intervals, and labels used in talking, writing, and thinking about music--were a real challenge. "I wanted a way to help students build connections faster," says Moseley. "To connect hearing music with seeing it written and feeling it through your fingers on the keyboard." Over the summer months Moseley, together with Music/History of Literature joint concentrator Chris Johnson-Robe-
labels including chord names. "This is not a compositional tool like Finale or Sibelius," he adds. "It's a tool for improving musical literacy that aids everyone from beginners to students at all levels of a college theory curriculum. It's not giving you exercises or a program of drills. The app writes down what you're playing and labels it. You can use it any way you want to." Moseley defines Rowland Moseley GO!FiGURE as doing three basic things. First, it acts as sheet music. "Say you're a beginner, and you play a chord sequence CaFG. You can see if you're hitting the right notes. People often feel adrift when they're just starting out; they doubt themselves unnecessarily or don't work through mistakes constructively." Second, it helps students with music theory labels. "You can feel where `A' is on the piano,"
son '11, developed a keyboarding software called GO!FiGURE that does exactly this. GO!FiGURE is a web-based interface for music literacy learning that takes the input from a computer-compatible piano keyboard and shows what is being played in music notation at the same time it generates the sounds. The interface displays virtual sheet music and, below that, a visual reproduction of the piano keyboard. "Before this, there were virtual pianolas or applications that would highlight the keys as you played yourself, but there was nothing that would also show the notes," explained Moseley. "With the app, when a Bach chorale plays, keys depress on the piano image, and the program writes all the notes going by in musical notation. It also displays a range of technical
Moseley explains, "see where it is on the screen, and read the letter `A'. Intervals, say a major 3rd or perfect 5th, appear on the screen as you play them, as do syllables if you're working on solfиge. The computer is doing the mechanical work, the work that normally would involve lots of thinking when you really want to be making connections through repeated practice." Lastly, the program can help students learn a shorthand performance notation, and learn about musical texture. "If you were playing harpsichord in the 17th or 18th century, accompanying a singer, you wouldn't have everything written out," says Moseley. "You'd be reading figured bass-- one line of notes with small numbers above . continued on p. 11
Christopher Johnson-Roberson graduated from Harvard in 2011 as a History of Literature/ Music concentrator. He's now in the ethnomusicology PhD program at Brown, advised by Kiri Miller (PhD '05) I hear that when ATG released their list of summer projects you leapt on this one. What attracted you to it? Rowland's proposal sounded great from the outset. I knew I would have loved to use a program like this back when I was in Music 51, or even AP Music Theory in high school. It surprised me that something like it didn't already exist. You developed this fairly quickly. How ? I'd used programs that had single aspects of the app (on-screen keyboard, staff notation, chord analysis, and MIDI playback), but never something that combined all of them. Nonetheless, it was easy to implement quickly because nearly all of the components were already available as open source software
-- I merely had to get them to talk to each other. GO!Figure is open source, meaning anyone, anywhere can build on it. Where do you see this going five years from now? Pitch detection for singing purposes would be a great feature. I would perhaps add the ability to designate thematic material and search for transpositions or fragmentations, making it a more full-fledged tool for analysis.
A l u m n i News
We are saddened to report that former graduate student in musicology Keith Sadko passed away earlier this year. A memorial service was held for him in Montreal on November 19, 2011. Also, noted musicologist and former composer, University of Massachusetts
Professor emeretis, and author of more than twelve books on American music Nicholas E. Tawa, PhD '74, died on October 4, 2011. Tawa was a historian of American popular culture and a founder of the Sonneck Society.
Gelbart Coordinator for Initiative for Romani Music at NYU Petra Gelbart (PhD '10) has been named principal coordinator of the newly launched Initiative for Romani Music (IRM), the first research and outreach entity of its kind. Gelbart launched IRM at the Department of Music at New York University, and produced the Institute's first symposium, Opre!, in November. Opre! brought together scholars of several Romani cultures and Roma who work as activists, academics, and/or performers. The keynote address was given by Carol Silverman (University of Oregon) and featured a concert by Raklorom, the NYU ensemble directed by Gelbart. IRM was created to bring together a network of scholars and artists working in the area of Romani music, and to educate the public about Romani cultures as well as ideas of "Gypsiness," fostering partnerships between Romani and nonRomani thinkers in discussions of Romani people's creativity and place in society.
Randall Eng (AB '94) was appointed Assistant Arts Professor in the Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program at New York University. Hannah Lash (PhD '10) was the recipient of a 2011 ASCAP Foundation Morton Gould Young Composer Award, chosen from among 750 entries. In conjunction with his 40th reunion in September, the Memorial Church Choir sang Leonard J. Lehrman's (AB '71) "We Wish You Peace," op. 130a, as part of MORNING PRAYER
service. The class reunion chorus, conducted by Rick Wilson, sang his "Blessing & Prayer for Healing," op. 129b and "Harvard-Radcliffe Reflections," op. 203, at the class memorial service. Lehrman's "Conscience," op. 93a, was also performed. The Motyl String Quartet will premiere Lehrman's Suite #2: "Remembrance," written to commemorate Kristallnacht, at Hebrew Union College in 2012, and his setting of Langston Hughes
poem, "Let America Be America Again" is scheduled to be premiered at Long Island University in Brookville this April. Evan MacCarthy (PhD'10) presented "Ab eruditis existemetur: Tinctoris' Neapolitan Colleagues" in Barcelona, Spain at the Annual Medieval and Renaissance Music Conference. In October, he delivered "Translating Oedipus Tyrannus: John Knowles Paine and America's First Greek Tragedy" at a conference held at the University of Iowa entitled, "Re-Creation: Musical Reception of Classical Antiquity." MacCarthy also contributed essays to Festschriften in honor of Alejandro Planchart (PhD '71) as well as Joseph Connors (Harvard PhD '78, art hiStory
), former director of Villa I Tatti. These essays concern a newly discovered, latefourteenth-century papal letter recruiting singers from northern Europe
to Rome and a mid-fifteenthcentury Italian bishop who began his career as a professional singer. Most recently MacCarthy began performing regularly as bass section leader with the Schola Cantorum of the College of the Holy Cross under the direction of James David Christie.
(Left) Felix, son of Ryan Banagale, PhD'11, at the Garden of the Gods in Colorado. Banagale is now a professor at Colorado College. (Right) Clara Melike was born on July 23, 2011 to Matthias Roeder, PhD'10, and Department Associate Seda Roeder. Matthias is now MANAGING DIRECTOR
of the Eliette und Herbert von Karajan Institut in Salzburg. Kotilaine Called to the Bar of England andWales Jennifer Baker Kotilaine (PhD '99) was Called to the Bar of England and Wales
and is now a Barrister, completing a pupillage at 42 Bedford Row in London. Barristers specialize in courtroom advocacy, which Kotilaine, who wrote her dissertation on Lithuanian folk music, reports can be seen as another type of performance, involving improvisation and thinking quickly. Jennifer Kotilaine with her youngest daughter, Audra Belinda Gardner. Archive Unveiled in Library Reception Honoring Lady Solti Matt Aucoin '12, Lady Solti, and Preceptor Richard Beaudoin at the opening reception of the Loeb Music Library exhibit, "Music first and last: Scores from the Sir Georg Solti Archive." Lady Solti decided to house her husband's famously marked-up scores at Harvard, where they will be digitized and made available online for a global audience.
TransmissionTransformation: Sounding China in Enlightenment Europe
All eyes are turned towards China, as it continuously grows in global importance. This phenomenon may have a contemporary ring to it, but the eighteenth century was equally enthralled by the Middle Kingdom. Everything about the distant empire was fascinating to the western world, including its music. Fanny Peabody Professor of Music Alexander Rehding, in conjunction with graduate students Peter McMurray and Meredith Schweig and the students in Music 220, "History of Music Theory," have developed a library exhibit that retraces the voyage of this music from Qingdynasty China to the urban salons, drawing rooms, and coffee houses of Enlightenment Europe. The exhibit, Transmission/Transformation: Sounding China in Enlightenment Europe, opens in the Loeb Music Library February 1, 2012. Much of the knowledge the eighteenth century had about Chinese culture was owed to Jesuit missionaries in the Far East, who wrote extensively about their encounter with this foreign world, and whose reports were eagerly studied by European Enlightenment philosophers and music scholars mesmerized by anything Chinese. To some, China represented an opportunity for critical reflection on Western society, and to others China represented a radically different societal order. Scholars incorporated missionary accounts--often in highly imaginative variants--into their own published works on musical evolution and knowledge, while Enlightenment composers began transcribing melodies and harmonizing them to make them "more palatable" to the European ear. The eighteenth-century public's curiosity about China ensured that many bourgeois homes would own such musical arrangements. The operatic stage, too, eagerly took up the idea of China as a colorful backdrop for exotic extravaganzas. "The whole idea for the course grew out of a score [Acting Loeb Librarian] Sarah Adams showed me a couple of years ago," says Rehding. "It was a English arrangement from 1796 of a song transcribed in China. It became clear to me that this apparently insignificant piece of music encapsulated the whole story of the transmission of Chinese music into Europe: from the-- faulty-- transcription of a popular Chinese tune to its setting in a manner that could be easily sung in a bourgeois parlor. In many ways, these simple arrangements were the precursor of the radio and the CD player: they provided simple musical entertainment at home, but in this case with an
Ehjeen Kim, Paavali Jumppanen, and Jonathan Withers, at the Peabody Museum, researhing historic Chinese instruments. Photo: Emerson Morgan
additional educational and exotic flavor." The class gathered material for the exhibi- tion throughout the fall semester
. In addition to the usual seminar settings, they visited many of the ongoing exhibitions at Harvard and spoke to numerous curators and experts. "This course covers such a vast terrain," says Rehding, "that it is quite impossible to be expert in all areas. We have made great use of Harvard's extraordinary resources and its amazing library and museum staff." Schweig adds, "We've reached out to musicians, scholars and instrument makers from Taipei and Shanghai as well, which has helped
been instrumental in developing this innovative course as part of the expanded PITF (Presidential information technology
Fellowship) program, that now also includes Museum (MITF) and Library (LITF) variants--precisely the kinds of expertise needed for this project. In the course of planning the class and the exhibition that is its final product, the digital component of the exhibition took on an increasingly weighty part. Schweig has a background in Asian Studies and museology, and McMurray is an old hand in digital media. "These two are the perfect collaborators," enthuses Rehding. "I would not have been able
For many students of "History of Music Theory"--normally a heady, abstract endeavor--it was a surprise to be working with digital applications like iMovie, Adobe Illustrator, or the newly developed software Zeega, and that they would be sent on treasure hunts to collections in far-flung places around the Harvard campus.
make this a very transnational experience." To enhance the visual experience of the exhibit the class worked on digital augmentation--audio files of music, documentation, film files--for some of the pieces. "The trouble with musical exhibitions," says Schweig, "is that you really want to hear the music. In an exhibition setting this is not an easy task to accomplish. So we had to think about alternatives." "The Loeb library was eager to help," adds McMurray. "They bought a number of ipads that visitors will be able to use to access the digital augmentation." McMurray and Schweig, two advanced graduate students in ethnomusicology, have
to launch this ambitious project without them." Everybody involved agrees that the project has been a huge learning experience. "One thought that is always at the back of my mind," says Rehding, "is how relevant some of these ideas are. Sure, the details have changed-- sometimes drastically so--but China still occupies the central place in western imagination that it's held since the Enlightenment." v Exhibit opens Wednesday, February 1st. Music performance at 4:00 pm, opening reception at 5:00 pm. Spalding Room, Second Floor
of the Eda Kuhn Loeb Music Library.
SPRING 2012 Calendar of Events BLODGETT CHAMBER MUSIC SERIES Chiara Quartet Friday, February 17 Schubert: Quartet No. 13 in A minor "Rosamunde" Quartet No. 12 in C minor "Quartettsatz" Quartet No. 14 in D minor "Death & the Maiden" Friday, March 23 Haydn: Quartet Op. 76 No. 5 Ann Cleare: moil* Bartok: Quartet No. 3 Brahms: Quartet No. 3 in B flat major, Op. 67 *Blodgett Composition Competition Winner
HARVARD GROUP FOR NEW MUSIC New works by Harvard composers Saturday, February 18 with Ensemble Nikel Saturday, April 14 with Frank Worner, bass-baritone Saturday, May 12 with musikFabrik
Lectures on Music Tuesday, February 28 at 5:15 pm LOUIS C. ELSON LECTURE Alvin Curran, composer "A New Common Practice, or A Life in Upopular Music"
Monday, April 16 at 4:15 pm Gianmario Borio, University of Pavia "The Indeterminate Status of the Audio/ Visual Experience" Davison Room, Music Library
All events are free and take place in John Knowles Paine Concert Hall at 8:00 p.m. unless otherwise noted. Free passes are required for the Chiara Quartet concerts, available two weeks before each concert at the Harvard Box Office. Please check the website for availability and location of free parking.
musikFabrik. Photo: Klaus Rudoph 10
Gil Rose. Photo: Liz Linder friday and saturday, march 30 and 31 Fromm Players at Harvard with Boston Modern Orchestra Project Gill Rose, Conductor Concerts Curated by Hans Tutschku March 30 Charles Wuorinen Epithalamium Gerard Grisey Jour, contre-jour Jonathan Harvey Bhakti March 31 Kaija Saariaho Io Alvin Lucier In Memoriam Jon Higgins Roger Reynolds Personae Charles Wuorinen Epithalamium Friday February 24 at 5:00 pm CELEBRATING PAINE! John Knowles Paine Concert Hall A concert and reception in celebration of the renovation and reopening of Paine Hall, the music classrooms, and our new practice rooms. Portland String Quartet perform John Knowles Paine: String Quartet in D Major, Op.5; Walter Piston: Quartet No. 1. Brief, pre-concert talks by Professors Evan MacCarthy and Anne Shreffler on the legacy and music of Paine.
Graduate Student News
GO!FiGURE continued from p .5
Edgar Barroso composed the score for The Compass is Carried by the Dead Man
, a film that was selected from 1000 entries for the 2011 Tokyo Film Festival. Barroso recorded the score at the Music Department's Studio for Electroacoustic Composition. The AMS Philip Brett Award (oustanding work in gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender/ transsexual studies) went to William Cheng for "Acoustemologies of the Closet: The Wizard, the Troll, and the Fortress," forthcoming in The Oxford Handbook of Virtuality (Oxford). Katherine I. Lee is affiliated with the Mahindra Humanities Center at Harvard and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
as an Interdisciplinary Dissertation Completion Fellow during this 2011-2012 academic year. She presented papers at the ICTM (St. John's, Newfoundland) and SEM (Philadelphia) conferences in July and November 2011. Luci Mok will present "When Jazz Goes North: Oscar Peterson and Possibilities of Northern Jazz" in January at the conference "Music and the Imaginary of the North and the Cold" at UQAM in Montrйal and in February at the New England
Chapter Meeting of the AMS. The world premiere of Stefan Prins' Piano Hero #2 and UK premiere of Piano Hero #1 for piano, midi-keyboard, live-electronics and video were performed at Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival 2011 (UK) by Mark Knoop. Prins also had his work
Peter McMurray and his wife Eunice are very excited to report the birth of Penelope Jaekyung McMurray, on July 27. performed at the "Rainy Days" Festival in Luxembourg. His composition Fremdkцrper #1 for ensemble and live-electronics will be performed by Ensemble Mosaik at "Musica Viva" Festival in Munich, Germany in February, and the premiere of Joystick Studies for Nadar Ensemble will take place in Belgium in March. Most recently, the Association of Belgian Music Journalists elected Prins "Young Belgian Musician of the Year" for 2012. In February and July Gabriele Vanoni will attend the International Rautavaara Workshop and Competition in Finland, where his music will be performed by the Helsinki Chamber Choir. Vanoni was recently invited to write a piece for 15 instruments and electronics for the International Ensemble Modern Academy that will be premiered in Frankfurt, Karlsruhe, and Paris in September 2012.
them--and based on what you knew you'd play a complete piano part. You knew that "7" over a G, for example, meant G-B-D-F. The program provides an easy way to visualize and think through how music works by illustrating the implied theory. "GO!FiGURE moves students away from pen and paper. You don't learn language through an algorithm. This program is like early stage language learning. It serves a basic need--developing musical intelligence
. It's an intuitive way to get familiar with music notation." The app will be used in Music 51 and Music 150 beginning spring term 2012. Harvard's Innovation Fund subsidized the purchase of 50 MIDI keyboards for students to use in their dorm rooms. "With this new technology, practice isn't a ten minute walk in the rain to the music building, but ten minutes before breakfast in the dorm room," Moseley notes. To use GO!FiGURE you need is a MIDI keyboard controller (or any keyboard compatible with a computer), and Google Chrome. It's also open source, which means that come February, Harvard is making the program available to many, many people, free, worldwide. "It was important to me that this was open source," says Moseley. "I wanted this to have real life to it, and the fact that it has the capability to reach millions of people is important. I want it to be useful. This is kind of thing the Internet should enable."
Electroacoustic Composition at the Sackler Museum
What do you see? What is it? What size? What color? What emotion or reflections does it trigger? What would you like to know about it? These are a few of the questions students in Hans Tutschku's Music 264 and 167 (Josiah Oberholtzer, teaching assistant) thought about when they approached artwork from the Sackler Museum's collection. Student composers were charged with writing an original piece related to a specific artwork over the course of six weeks. Although museum curators toured with students to add context and history to the study of each artwork, the students' first contact was personal. A concert of all the new works took place December 8th and 9th in the Sackler. A subsection of Hydra, Harvard's multi-speaker sound diffusion system, was imported to play the compositions.
Tutschku prepares for a student concert in the Sackler Musuem. Photo: James Moisson, Harvard art museum
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In Memoriam: Yannatos, Conductor, Composer, Violinist, Educator
Photo by Phoebe Sexton/Harvard Staff Photographer
James Yannatos, who as leader of the Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra for more than 45 years worked
with thousands of young musicians, died at his home in Cambridge on Oct. 19 from complications
of cancer. He was 82.
Yannatos was born and educated in New York City
. He attended the High School of Music
Art and the Manhattan School of Music. Subsequent studies with Nadia Boulanger, Luigi Dallapiccola,
Darius Milhaud, Paul Hindemith, and Philip Bezanson in composition; William Steinberg and Leonard
Bernstein in conducting; and Hugo Kortschak and Ivan Galamian on violin took Yannatos to Yale
University (B.M., M.M.), the University of Iowa (Ph.D.), Aspen, Tanglewood, and Paris. As a young
violinist, he performed in various professional ensembles including a piano trio, string quartet, early
music groups with Hindemith and Boulanger, and in the Casals Festival.
In 1964, he was appointed music director of the Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra, and led that group
on tours to Europe, Russia, South America, and Asia. He organized and co-directed the New England
Composers Orchestra, the Tanglewood Young Artists Orchestra, and taught conducting at Tanglewood.
He appeared as guest conductor-composer at the Aspen, Banff, Tanglewood, Chautauqua, and Saratoga
festivals; with the Boston Pops, Winnipeg, Edmonton, Baltimore, and San Antonio symphonies, and
the Sverdlovsk, Leningrad, Cleveland, and American Symphony chamber orchestras. Yannatos was
Senior Lecturer in Music at Harvard.
He leaves behind his wife, Nyia O'Neil; daughter, Kalya, of Malboro, Vt.; and son, Dion, of West
Hurley, N.Y.; sister, Katherine, of New York City; and two grandchildren.
A memorial tribute was held on December 10 in Harvard's Sanders Theatre, where Yannatos'
music was performed and where family members and friends shared memories.
Other remembrances may be found at: www.music.fas.harvard.edu/yannatos.html
--from the Harvard Gazette 10/31/11