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Music Courses 2009-2010
(as of July 1, 2009)
The letter “a” following the course number denotes the fall term; the letter “b” denotes the spring term.
MUS 519a-b, 619a-b, 719a-b, 819a-b, Colloquium
Participation in seminars led by faculty and guest lecturers on topics concerning theology, music, worship, and related arts. Required of all Institute of Sacred Music students. Martin Jean.
MUS 523a, Liturgical Keyboard Skills
In this course, students will gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for musical genres, both those familiar to them and different from their own, and learn basic techniques for their application in church service playing. Students will learn to play hymns, congregational songs, service music, and anthems from a variety of sources, including music from the liturgical and free church traditions, including the Black Church experience. Beginning with the piano, students will be encouraged to play by ear, using their aural skills in learning gospel music. This training will extend to the organ, in the form of improvised introductions and varied accompaniments to hymns of all types. We will seek to accomplish these goals by active participation and discussion in class. When not actually playing in class, students will be encouraged to sing to the accompaniment of the person at the keyboard, to further their experience of singing with accompaniment, and to give practical encouragement to the person playing at the time. Walden Moore.
MUS 531a-b, 631a-b, 731a-b, Repertory Chorus
A reading chorus open by audition and conducted by graduate choral conducting students. The chorus reads, studies, and sings a wide sampling of choral literature. Marguerite Brooks.
MUS 532a-b, 632a-b, 732a-b, Conducting Repertory Chorus
Students in the graduate choral conducting program work with the Repertory Chorus, preparing and conducting a portion of a public concert each term. Open only to choral conducting majors. Marguerite Brooks.
MUS 535a-b, 635a-b, 735a-b, Recital Chorus
A chorus open by audition and conducted by graduate choral conducting students. It serves as the choral ensemble for four to five degree recitals per year. Marguerite Brooks.
MUS 536a-b, 636a-b, 736a-b, Conducting Recital Chorus
Second- and third-year students in the graduate choral conducting program work with the Recital Chorus, preparing and conducting their degree recitals. Open to choral conducting majors only. Marguerite Brooks.
MUS 537b, Collaborative Piano-Voice
A course designed for pianists focusing on the skills required for vocal accompanying and coaching. The standard song and operatic repertoire is emphasized. Sight-reading, techniques of transposition, figured bass, and effective reduction of operatic materials for the recreation of orchestral sounds at the piano are included in the curriculum. Ted Taylor.
MUS 546a-b, 646a-b, 746a-b, Yale Camerata
Open to all members of the University community by audition, the Yale Camerata presents several performances throughout the year that explore choral literature from all musical periods. Members of the ensemble should have previous choral experience and be willing to devote time to the preparation of music commensurate with the Camerata’s vigorous rehearsal and concert schedule. Marguerite Brooks.
MUS 567a, Chant and Liturgy in the Latin Middle Ages: An Introduction to the Sources
This interdisciplinary course is designed for scholars, performers, and liturgists. The focus is on manuscripts from the long twelfth century and from centers of major musical, liturgical, and exegetical importance: the Abbey of St. Victor in Paris; the use of Hirsau around Mainz; the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem; and liturgical change in the region around Winchester from the early eleventh through the late twelfth century. Students should have graduate or professional-level expertise in one of the following: music, liturgics, Latin, manuscript study, medieval history, biblical study, theology, or art history. Margot Fassler.
MUS 571a-b, 671a-b, 771a-b, Yale Schola Cantorum
Specialist Chamber Choir for the development of advanced ensemble skills and expertise in demanding solo roles (in music before 1750 and from the last 100 years. Enrollment limited to, and requried of, voice majors in the early music, song, and chamber ensemble program. Masaaki Suzuki.
MUS 595a, 695a, Performance Practice for Singers: Introduction
An exploration of the major issues of historically informed performance, such as the search for “authenticity” and the roles of the editor and the performer. Specific topics addressed will include performance context, application of sources, original notation and modern editions, national styles, aesthetics, and ornamentation. Students will examine historical sources and will read selections from 17th and 18th century treatises. Open to conductors and instrumentalists with permission of instructor. Judith Malafronte.
MUS 595b, 695b, Performance Practice for Singers: Then and Now: The Performance of Handel’s Oratorios
An examination of Handel’s oratorios in their social and musical context, noting the influence of Handel’s singers and audience on his compositions. The class will address issues of baroque vocal performance including tempo, ornamentation, recitative and dramatic interpretation, with a high level of student participation and making limited use of recordings. We will study the librettos as social, political and religious statements, looking in depth at La Resurrezione, Saul, and Solomon. Open to conductors and instrumentalists with permission of instructor. Judith Malafronte.
MUS 601a, The Chorale Cantatas of J.S. Bach
One of the most important musical materials in the works of Johann Sebastian Bach is the Protestant hymn, the chorale. During his second year in Leipzig, Bach composed a whole cycle of chorale cantatas. The course examines the musical, liturgical, and theological traditions that formed the basis for these cantatas, and it shows how Bach managed the compositional problems he was faced with. Since the usage of a chorale limited the formal possibilities of the composer, Bach had to find solutions for structural and contrapuntal problems. In the Choralkantatenjahrgang, Bach shows how a choral motet can be combined with a French overture and a recitative with a hymn setting. Some of his compositional solutions were predetermined by tradition; others were absolutely new. But not only in these technical aspects are the chorale cantatas of interest. Since Bach was faced in most of the cantatas with similar problems, they are an essential document for Bach’s own artistic development. Markus Rathey.
MUS 603b, The Sacred Concerto in the Seventeenth Century
When Ludovico da Viadana published his Cento concerti Ecclesiastici in 1602, a “new” musical style was born: the small scaled sacred concerto. The course will outline the development of this style in the 17th century among composers like Monteverdi and Schutz, as well as its roots in the late 16th century in the compositions of Willaert and G. Gabrieli. Markus Rathey.
MUS 617a, Music and Theology in the Sixteenth Century
The Protestant Reformation in the sixteenth century was a “media event.” The invention of letterpress printing, the partisanship of famous artists like Durer and Cranach, and, not least, the support of musicians and composers were responsible for spreading the thoughts of Reformation. But while Luther gave an important place to music, Zwingli and Calvin were much more skeptical. Music—especially sacred music—was not only a chance for Reformation, it was also a problem, because it was tightly connected with Catholic liturgical and aesthetic traditions. Reformation had to think about the place music could have in worship and about the function of music in secular life. But first of all, a theological authorization had to be found, because the authorization of music by any kind of tradition was no longer possible. The course shows how music was viewed by the reformers and which theological decisions formed the basis for their view. But we also consider the effect of these theological matters on musical practice: on liturgical singing and on composers and their compositions. Markus Rathey.