At the age of ten he appeared "on a [local] radio show as a solo pianist among a bevy of similarly youthful performers," where he played the music of Cole Porter and others. There, he studied composition with Otto Luening and Vladimir Ussachevsky , although his main interests were forming around music theory and analysis. In fall he began his long-term appointment at Yale , where he eventually became the Battell Professor of Music retiring in Yale did not offer a Ph.
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The term "atonality" was coined in by Joseph Marx in a scholarly study of tonality, which was later expanded into his doctoral thesis Haydin and Esser Their music arose from what was described as the "crisis of tonality" between the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century in classical music. This situation had arisen over the course of the nineteenth century due to the increasing use of ambiguous chords , improbable harmonic inflections, and more unusual melodic and rhythmic inflections than what was possible within the styles of tonal music.
The distinction between the exceptional and the normal became more and more blurred. As a result, there was a "concomitant loosening" of the synthetic bonds through which tones and harmonies had been related to one another.
The connections between harmonies were uncertain even on the lowest chord-to-chord level. On higher levels, long-range harmonic relationships and implications became so tenuous, that they hardly functioned at all. At best, the felt probabilities of the style system had become obscure. At worst, they were approaching a uniformity, which provided few guides for either composition or listening.
Meyer , The first phase, known as "free atonality" or "free chromaticism", involved a conscious attempt to avoid traditional diatonic harmony. The second phase, begun after World War I , was exemplified by attempts to create a systematic means of composing without tonality, most famously the method of composing with 12 tones or the twelve-tone technique.
Schoenberg was the major innovator of the system. His student, Anton Webern, however, is anecdotally claimed to have begun linking dynamics and tone color to the primary row, making rows not only of pitches but of other aspects of music as well Du Noyer , One analyst concluded, following a minute examination of the Piano Variations, op.
None of the patterns within separate nonpitch characteristics makes audible or even numerical sense in itself. The point is that these characteristics are still playing their traditional role of differentiation.
Westergaard , Twelve-tone technique, combined with the parametrization separate organization of four aspects of music : pitch, attack character, intensity, and duration of Olivier Messiaen , would be taken as the inspiration for serialism Du Noyer , Atonality emerged as a pejorative term to condemn music in which chords were organized seemingly with no apparent coherence.
In Nazi Germany , atonal music was attacked as " Bolshevik " and labeled as degenerate Entartete Musik along with other music produced by enemies of the Nazi regime. Many composers had their works banned by the regime, not to be played until after its collapse at the end of World War II. Iannis Xenakis generated pitch sets from mathematical formulae, and also saw the expansion of tonal possibilities as part of a synthesis between the hierarchical principle and the theory of numbers, principles which have dominated music since at least the time of Parmenides Xenakis , However, he provides one example as a way to compose atonal pieces, a pre-twelve-tone technique piece by Anton Webern, which rigorously avoids anything that suggests tonality, to choose pitches that do not imply tonality.
In other words, reverse the rules of the common practice period so that what was not allowed is required and what was required is not allowed. This is what was done by Charles Seeger in his explanation of dissonant counterpoint , which is a way to write atonal counterpoint Seeger Further, Perle agrees with Oster and Katz that, "the abandonment of the concept of a root -generator of the individual chord is a radical development that renders futile any attempt at a systematic formulation of chord structure and progression in atonal music along the lines of traditional harmonic theory" Perle , Equal-interval chords are often of indeterminate root, mixed-interval chords are often best characterized by their interval content, while both lend themselves to atonal contexts DeLone and Wittlich , — Perle also points out that structural coherence is most often achieved through operations on intervallic cells.
A cell "may operate as a kind of microcosmic set of fixed intervallic content, statable either as a chord or as a melodic figure or as a combination of both. Its components may be fixed with regard to order, in which event it may be employed, like the twelve-tone set, in its literal transformations.
Regarding the post-tonal music of Perle, one theorist wrote: "While Transposition can be seen as a rotation of t either clockwise or anti-clockwise on a circle, where each note of the chord is rotated equally.
Inversion can be seen as a symmetry with respect to the axis formed by 0 and 6. If we carry on with our example [0 3 6] becomes [0 9 6].
An important characteristic are the invariants which are the notes which stay identical after a transformation. This is why the note scale is represented by a circle. Reception[ edit ] Controversy over the term itself[ edit ] The term "atonality" itself has been controversial. There is no such antithesis" Schoenberg , Attempts to solve these problems by using terms such as "pan-tonal", "non-tonal", "multi-tonal", "free-tonal" and "without tonal center" instead of "atonal" have not gained broad acceptance.
Criticism of the concept of atonality[ edit ] Composer Anton Webern held that "new laws asserted themselves that made it impossible to designate a piece as being in one key or another" Webern , Composer Walter Piston , on the other hand, said that, out of long habit, whenever performers "play any little phrase they will hear it in some key—it may not be the right one, but the point is they will play it with a tonal sense.
They will hear tonality in everything" Westergaard , Donald Jay Grout similarly doubted whether atonality is really possible, because "any combination of sounds can be referred to a fundamental root". He defined it as a fundamentally subjective category: "atonal music is music in which the person who is using the word cannot hear tonal centers" Grout , One difficulty is that even an otherwise "atonal" work, tonality "by assertion" is normally heard on the thematic or linear level.
That is, centricity may be established through the repetition of a central pitch or from emphasis by means of instrumentation, register, rhythmic elongation, or metric accent Simms , Criticism of atonal music[ edit ] Swiss conductor, composer, and musical philosopher Ernest Ansermet , a critic of atonal music, wrote extensively on this in the book Les fondements de la musique dans la conscience humaine The Foundations of Music in Human Consciousness Ansermet , where he argued that the classical musical language was a precondition for musical expression with its clear, harmonious structures.
Ansermet argued that a tone system can only lead to a uniform perception of music if it is deduced from just a single interval. For Ansermet this interval is the fifth Mosch ,
The Structure of Atonal Music
ALLEN FORTE THE STRUCTURE OF ATONAL MUSIC PDF
The Structure of Atonal Music