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Encyclopedia > Serialism

In music, serialism is a technique for composition that uses sets to describe musical elements, and allows the manipulation of those sets. Serialism is often, though not universally, held to begin with twelve-tone technique, which uses a set of the 12 notes of the chromatic scale to form a row (a fixed sequence of the 12 tones of the chromatic scale) as the unifying basis for a composition's melody, harmony, structural progressions, and variations. When not used synonymously, serialism differs from twelve-tone technique in that any number of elements from any musical dimension (called "parameters"), such as duration, register, dynamics, or timbre, and/or pitches, may be ordered in sets of fewer or more than twelve elements. The term "series" should not be confused with the mathematical definition, which nevertheless comes into conjunction when the scales involved are projected from numerical sequences such as the arithmetic series, harmonic series (including its acoustical manifestation as the overtone series and its inversion, the so-called subharmonic series), geometric series, Fibonacci series, or infinity series. Serial can refer to several things: Serial, anything in the form of a series Serial, a format by which a story is told in installments Serials, periodicals and journals, in publishing Serial cable, a type of computer cable Serial communications, computer communication technologies that use a single stream of data... For other uses, see Music (disambiguation). ... Musical composition is a phrase used in a number of contexts, the most commonly used being a piece of music. ... In musical set theory, a set is a collection of discrete entities. ... An aspect of music is any characteristic, dimension, or element taken as a part or component of music. ... Categories: Wikipedia cleanup | Stub ... Twelve-tone technique (also dodecaphony) is a method of musical composition devised by Arnold Schoenberg. ... The chromatic scale is a scale with twelve pitches, each a semitone or half step apart. ... In music, a tone row or note row is a permutation, an arrangement or ordering, of the twelve notes of the chromatic scale. ... Look up melody in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Harmony is the use and study of pitch simultaneity, and therefore chords, actual or implied, in music. ... For the ballet Theme and Variations, see Theme and Variations (ballet). ... Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ... This is a page about mathematics. ... // Definition In mathematics, an arithmetic series is the sum of the components of an arithmetic progression. ... See harmonic series (music) for the (related) musical concept. ... Acoustics is the interdisciplinary sciences that always deals with the study of sound, ultrasound and infrasound (all mechanical waves in gases, liquids, and solids). ... Pitched musical instruments are usually based on a harmonic oscillator such as a string or a column of air. ... Diagram showing the geometric series 1 + 1/2 + 1/4 + 1/8 + ... which converges to 2. ... In mathematics, the Fibonacci numbers form a sequence defined recursively by: In words: you start with 0 and 1, and then produce the next Fibonacci number by adding the two previous Fibonacci numbers. ... The infinity series (Danish Uendelighedsrækken) is a method discovered by the Danish composer Per Nørgård for serializing melody, harmony, and rhythm in musical composition. ...


Important serial composers such as Arnold Schoenberg, Anton Webern, Alban Berg, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Pierre Boulez, Luigi Nono, and Jean Barraqué, went through extended periods of time in which they disciplined themselves always to use some variety of serialism in writing their music. Other composers such as Béla Bartók, Luciano Berio, Benjamin Britten, Aaron Copland, Arvo Pärt, Walter Piston, Alfred Schnittke, Dmitri Shostakovich, Igor Stravinsky, and even some jazz composers such as Yusef Lateef and Bill Evans, used serialism only for some of their compositions or only for some sections of pieces. Arnold Schoenberg, Los Angeles, 1948 Arnold Schoenberg (pronounced [ˈaːrnÉ”lt ˈʃøːnbÉ›rk]) (13 September 1874 – 13 July 1951) was an Austrian and later American composer, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School. ... Anton Webern (December 3, 1883 – September 15, 1945) was an Austrian composer and conductor. ... Bust of Alban Berg at Schiefling, Carinthia, Austria Alban Maria Johannes Berg (February 9, 1885 – December 24, 1935) was an Austrian composer. ... Karlheinz Stockhausen (born August 22, 1928) is a German composer, and one of the most important and controversial composers of the 20th century (Barret 1988, 45; Harvey 1975b, 705; Hopkins 1972, 33; Klein 1968, 117; Power 1990, 30). ... Pierre Boulez Pierre Boulez (IPA: /pjɛʁ.buˈlÉ›z/) (born March 26, 1925) is a conductor and composer of classical music. ... Grave of Nono in the San Michele Cemetery, Venice. ... Jean Barraqué (January 17, 1928 – August 17, 1973) was a French composer. ... Bartok redirects here. ... Luciano Berio (October 24, 1925 – May 27, 2003) was an Italian composer. ... Britten redirects here. ... Aaron Copland Aaron Copland (November 14, 1900 – December 2, 1990) was an American composer of concert and film music, as well as an accomplished pianist. ... Arvo Pärt (born September 11, 1935 in Paide), (IPA: ˈɑr̺vÉ” ˈpær̺t) is an Estonian composer, often identified with the school of minimalism and more specifically, that of mystic minimalism or sacred minimalism. He is considered a pioneer of this style, along with contemporaries Henryk Górecki... Walter Hamor Piston Jr. ... Alfred Schnittke April 6, 1989, Moscow Alfred Garyevich Schnittke (Russian: Альфре́д Га́рриевич Шни́тке, November 24, 1934 Engels - August 3, 1998 Hamburg) was a Russian and Soviet composer. ... Dmitri Shostakovich in 1942 Dmitri Dmitriyevich Shostakovich   (Russian: , Dmitrij Dmitrievič Å ostakovič) (September 25 [O.S. September 12] 1906 – August 9, 1975) was a Russian composer of the Soviet period. ... Igor Stravinsky. ... For other uses, see Jazz (disambiguation). ... Album cover of Eastern Sounds Dr. Yusef Lateef (born William Emanuel Huddleston, October 9, 1920) is an American jazz musician. ... William John Evans (better known as Bill Evans) (August 16, 1929 – September 15, 1980) was an American jazz pianist and one of the most famous of the 20th century; he remains one of the major influences on post-1950s jazz piano. ...

Contents

Basic definition

The use of the word "serial" in connection with music was first introduced in French by René Leibowitz (1947), and immediately afterward by Humphrey Searle in English, as an alternative translation of the German Zwölftontechnik Twelve-tone technique or Reihenmusik (row music); it was independently introduced by Herbert Eimert and Karlheinz Stockhausen into German in 1954 as serielle Musik, with a different meaning, translated into English also as "serial music". René Leibowitz (February 17, 1913 – August 29, 1972) was a French composer, conductor, music theorist and teacher born in Warsaw, Poland. ... Humphrey Searle (August 26, 1915 - May 12, 1982) was a British composer. ... Twelve-tone technique (also dodecaphony) is a method of musical composition devised by Arnold Schoenberg. ... Herbert Eimert (born 8 April 1897 in Bad Kreuznach, died 15 December 1972 in Düsseldorf) was a German music theorist, musicologist, and composer. ... Karlheinz Stockhausen (born August 22, 1928) is a German composer, and one of the most important and controversial composers of the 20th century (Barret 1988, 45; Harvey 1975b, 705; Hopkins 1972, 33; Klein 1968, 117; Power 1990, 30). ...


Serialism is most specifically defined as the structural principle according to which a recurring series of ordered elements (normally a set – or 'row' – of pitches or 'pitch classes') which are used in order, or manipulated in particular ways, to give a piece unity. Serialism is often broadly applied to all music written in what Arnold Schoenberg called "The Method of Composing with Twelve Notes related only to one another", or dodecaphony, and methods which evolved from his methods. It is sometimes used more specifically to apply only to music where at least one other element other than pitch is subjected to being treated as a row or series. The term Schoenbergian serialism is sometimes used to make the same distinction between use of pitch series only, particularly if there is an adherence to post-Romantic textures, harmonic procedures, voice-leading and other audible elements of 19th-century music. In such usages post-Webernian serialism will be used to denote works which extend serial techniques to other elements of music. Other terms used to make the distinction are 12-note serialism for the former, and integral serialism for the latter. In mathematics, a set can be thought of as any collection of distinct objects considered as a whole. ... Row may refer to: Row, an argument. ... In music and music theory a pitch class contains all notes that have the same name; for example, all Es, no matter which octave they are in, are in the same pitch class. ... Arnold Schoenberg, Los Angeles, 1948 Arnold Schoenberg (pronounced [ˈaːrnÉ”lt ˈʃøːnbÉ›rk]) (13 September 1874 – 13 July 1951) was an Austrian and later American composer, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School. ... Twelve-tone technique is a system of musical composition devised by Arnold Schoenberg. ...


A row may be assembled 'pre-compositionally' (perhaps to embody particular intervallic or symmetrical properties), or it may be derived from a spontaneously invented thematic or motivic idea.


Each row or series is said to have three (or five) other canonical forms (the expression is borrowed from mathematics): retrograde (the basic set backwards), inversion (the basic set "upside down"), and retrograde-inversion (the basic set upside down and backwards), to which is sometimes added the M5 (perfect fourth) and M7 (perfect fifth) transformations. The basic set is usually required to have certain properties, and may have additional restrictions, such as the requirement that it use each interval only once. The series in itself may be regarded as pre-compositional material: in the process of composition it is manipulated by various means to produce the musical substance. Generally, in mathematics, a canonical form is a function that is written in the most standard, conventional, and logical way. ... In music theory, the term interval describes the difference in pitch between two notes. ...


Serial composition then involves the creation of classes of musical elements; dividing them into equipotential members, such as steps on the chromatic scale; and then using techniques of serial composition, presenting the original set or sets in a myriad of forms to create a work of music. Very generally the act of composition per se takes the form of fixing, or otherwise constraining, in the case of indeterminate music, a sequence of units with particular parameters.


Composers have often built their pieces from discrete, atomic units—in most cases one just calls them "notes"—that enjoy a fixed identity and status within an extended musical practice and beyond the confines of any one particular composition. To these units attach various quantifiable or at least decidable parameters: pitch, loudness, duration, onset time, articulation, timbre, spatial location, etc.


The first wave of post-war serialism focused on placing more and more of the musical elements in a piece under serial control. The serial composer aims to create musical meaning directly out the variation of parameters. This has led many serial composers to adopt a style that allows space for each individual unit to assert its identity, to "speak," often using a "punctual" or "pointillist" style modelled in part on the music of Webern as an example. Punctualism (commonly also called pointillism) is a style of musical composition prevalent in Europe between 1949 and 1955 whose structures are predominantly effected from tone to tone, without superordinate formal conceptions coming to bear (Essl 1989, 93). ...


Although the "strict" school of European post-war serialism was considered to be descended from the example of Anton Webern (and the American school from that of Arnold Schoenberg), another path was followed by admirers of Alban Berg, Arnold Schoenberg, and Josef Matthias Hauer, with the result that some composers from the 1950s onward (e.g., Irving Fine, Ross Lee Finney, Tobias Picker, Walter Piston, Einojuhani Rautavaara, Dieter Schnebel, Tōru Takemitsu, Bernd Alois Zimmermann) employed serialism as one among several musical resources in compositions, without adherence to the rigorous methods observed by its most enthusiastic proponents.[citation needed] Josef Mattias Hauer (March 19, 1883 – September 22, 1959) was an Austrian composer and music theorist. ... Irving Fine (December 3, 1914–August 23, 1962) was a US composer. ... Ross Lee Finney Junior (December 23, 1906–February 4, 1997) was an American composer born in Wells, Minnesota who taught for many years at the University of Michigan. ... Tobias Picker (b. ... Walter Hamor Piston Jr. ... Einojuhani Rautavaara (born October 9, 1928) is a Finnish composer of classical music, probably the best known Finnish composer of his generation. ... Dieter Schnebel (born 1930 in Lahr/Baden) is a composer. ... Tōru Takemitsu (武満 å¾¹ Takemitsu Tōru, October 8, 1930–February 20, 1996) was a Japanese composer of music, and four time winner of the Japanese Academy Award, who explored the compositional principles of Western classical music and his native Japanese tradition both in isolation and in combination. ... Bernd Alois Zimmermann (Bliesheim, March 20, 1918 - Grosskönigsdorf, August 10, 1970) is a German composer. ...


History of serial music

The serialization of rhythm, dynamics, and other elements of music developed after the Second World War by arguing that the twelve-tone music of Arnold Schoenberg and his followers of the Second Viennese School had serialized pitch, and was partly fostered by the work of Olivier Messiaen and his analysis students, including Karel Goeyvaerts and Boulez, in post-war Paris. For other uses, see Rhythm (disambiguation). ... “Fortissimo” redirects here. ... Serialism is a rubric applied to diverse systems of composing music in which various elements of a piece are ordered according to a pre-determined set or sets of musical pitches (sometimes called rows), and variations on them. ... Arnold Schoenberg, Los Angeles, 1948 Arnold Schoenberg (pronounced [ˈaːrnɔlt ˈʃøːnbɛrk]) (13 September 1874 – 13 July 1951) was an Austrian and later American composer, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School. ... The Second Viennese School was a group of composers made up of Arnold Schoenberg and those who studied under him in early 20th century Vienna. ... Olivier Messiaen It has been suggested that List of students of Olivier Messiaen be merged into this article or section. ... Karel Goeyvaerts (Antwerp Jun 8, 1923 - February 3, 1993, Antwerp) was a composer. ... This article is about the capital of France. ...


Twelve tone music

In the early 20th century composers in the European classical tradition began searching for other ways to organize works of music other than reliance on the ordered system of chords and intervals known as tonality. Many composers used modal organization, and others began to use alternate scales, sometimes within a tonal context provided by jazz. There was an increasing movement to avoid any particular chord or pitch as being central, which was described as atonal or pantonal. Some composers seeking to extend this direction in music began to search for ways to compose systematically. Tonality is a system of writing music according to certain hierarchical pitch relationships around a key center or tonic. ... This article is about modes as used in music. ... For other uses, see Jazz (disambiguation). ... Atonality describes music not conforming to the system of tonal hierarchies, which characterizes the sound of classical European music between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries. ...


Serialism invented and described

The period after World War II represents the codification of serialism as a body of theory. Most of the major concepts were named, refined, and a series of notational conventions were developed in order to deal with the particular problems of serial composition.


After the Second World War, students of Olivier Messiaen saw Webern's structure, and Messiaen's techniques of parameterization as the next way forward in composition. They began creating individual sets or series for each element of music. The elements thus serially determined included the duration of notes, their dynamics, their orchestration, and many others. To differentiate these compositions from twelve-tone works, the term "multiple serialism" or total serialism were used. René Leibowitz, as composer, conductor, teacher, and author was also influential in claiming the Second Viennese School as being the foundation for modern music. “Fortissimo” redirects here. ... René Leibowitz (February 17, 1913 – August 29, 1972) was a French composer, conductor, music theorist and teacher born in Warsaw, Poland. ...


Schoenberg's arrival in the US in 1933 helped accelerate the acceptance of both twelve-tone music, and serialism more generally in American academia, at that time dominated by neo-classicism. Even before his death in 1951 two major theorists and composers, Milton Babbitt and George Perle, emerged as prominent figures actively involved with the analysis of serial music as well the creation of new works using sometimes radical extensions and revisions of the method. Milton Byron Babbitt (born May 10, 1916) is an American composer. ... George Perle (born May 6, 1915 in Bayonne, New Jersey) is a composer and musicologist who has studied with Ernst Krenek. ...


In the late 1950s Allen Forte began working on ways to describe atonal harmony, making extensive use of set notation, pitch classes and families and other terms which would later become standard in the description of serial composition. For example, in 1964 he published an article entilted "A Theory of Set-Complexes for Music". In 1973 he published the very influential work The Structure of Atonal Music. Allen Forte (born December 23, 1926) is a music theorist and musicologist. ...


Serialism and high modernism

Serialism, along with John Cage's indeterminate music (music composed with the use of chance operations), and Werner Meyer-Eppler's aleatoricism, was enormously influential in post-war music. Theorists such as George Perle codified serial systems, and his 1962 text Serial Composition and Atonality became a standard work on the origins of serial composition in the work of Schoenberg, Berg and Webern. Serialism created an environment where experimentation with sound, in a manner similar to the exploration of pure painting in Abstract Expressionism was at the forefront of composition,[citation needed] which led to increased use of electronics and other applications of mathematical notation to composition,[citation needed] developed by theorists such as the composer and mathematician Milton Babbitt. For the Mortal Kombat character, see Johnny Cage. ... Indeterminate music was a form of music pioneered by the late John Cage. ... Werner Meyer-Eppler (1913–1960), physicist, experimental acoustician, phoneticist, and information theorist, was born on 30 April 1913 in Antwerp. ... Aleatoric music (also aleatory music or chance music; from the Latin word alea, meaning dice) is music in which some element of the composition is left to chance or some primary element of a composed works realization is left to the determination of its performer(s). ... George Perle (born May 6, 1915 in Bayonne, New Jersey) is a composer and musicologist who has studied with Ernst Krenek. ... Bust of Alban Berg at Schiefling, Carinthia, Austria Alban Maria Johannes Berg (February 9, 1885 – December 24, 1935) was an Austrian composer. ... Jackson Pollock, No. ... Milton Byron Babbitt (born May 10, 1916) is an American composer. ...


Other composers to use serialism include Luigi Nono, who developed similar ideas separately,[citation needed] Roger Reynolds, and Charles Wuorinen, the later works of Igor Stravinsky and the early works of George Rochberg. Major centers for serialism were the Darmstadt School and the "School of Paris" centered around Pierre Boulez. Grave of Nono in the San Michele Cemetery, Venice. ... American composer and teacher at the University of California at San Diego Roger Reynolds was born July 18, 1934 in Detroit, Michigan. ... Charles Wuorinen (born June 9, 1938 in New York City) is an American composer. ... Igor Stravinsky. ... George Rochberg, (July 5, 1918, Paterson, New Jersey – May 29, 2005, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania) was an American composer of contemporary classical music. ... This article is specifically about a style of composition created by composers who attended Darmstadt New Music Summer School late 1950s/early 1960s called Darmstadt School. ...


Several of the composers associated with Darmstadt, notably Karlheinz Stockhausen, Karel Goeyvaerts, and Henri Pousseur developed a form of serialism which initially rejected the recurring rows characteristic of twelve-tone technique, in order to eradicate any lingering traces of thematicism (Felder 1977, 92). Instead of a recurring, referential row, "each musical component is subjected to control by a series of numerical proportions" (Morgan 1975, 3). In Europe, the style of some serial as well as non-serial music of the early 1950s emphasized the determination of all parameters for each note independently, often resulting in widely spaced, isolated "points" of sound, an effect called first in German "punktuelle Musik" ("pointist" or "punctual music"), then in French "musique ponctuelle", but quickly confused with "pointillistic" (German "pointillistische", French "pointilliste") the familiar term associated with the densely packed dots in paintings of Seurat, despite the fact that the conception was at the opposite extreme (Stockhausen and Frisius 1998, 451). Karlheinz Stockhausen (born August 22, 1928) is a German composer, and one of the most important and controversial composers of the 20th century (Barret 1988, 45; Harvey 1975b, 705; Hopkins 1972, 33; Klein 1968, 117; Power 1990, 30). ... Karel Goeyvaerts (Antwerp Jun 8, 1923 - February 3, 1993, Antwerp) was a composer. ... Henri Pousseur (Composer Born 1929) Studied at the Academies of Music in Liège and in Brussels. ... In music, a theme is the initial or primary melody. ... Punctualism (commonly also called pointillism) is a style of musical composition prevalent in Europe between 1949 and 1955 whose structures are predominantly effected from tone to tone, without superordinate formal conceptions coming to bear (Essl 1989, 93). ... Detail from Seurats La Parade (1889), showing the contrasting dots of paint used in pointillism. ... --68. ...


Integral serialism had demanded that all parameters in a work be treated as scaled sets (not necessarily in fixed successions) with an equal right to participate in the compositional process, but beginning in the mid-1950s, Stockhausen and others began to focus on "serial principles" as well as methods. Pieces were structured by closed sets of proportions, a method closely related to certain works from the de Stijl and Bauhaus movements in design and architecture called "serial art" by some writers (Bochner 1967, Sykora 1983, Guderian 1985), specifically the paintings of Piet Mondrian, Theo van Doesberg, Bart van Leck, Georg van Tongerloo, Richard Paul Lohse, and Burgoyne Diller, who had been seeking to “avoid repetition and symmetry on all structural levels and working with a limited number of elements” (Bandur 2001, 54). De Stijl redirects here. ... For information about British gothic rock band, see Bauhaus (band). ... Piet Mondrian, 1924 Pieter Cornelis (Piet) Mondriaan, after 1912 Mondrian, (pronounced: Dutch IPA: , later IPA: ), (March 7, 1872–February 1, 1944) was a Dutch painter. ... Theo van Doesburg (born Christian Emil Marie Küpper) (August 30, 1883 - March 7, 1931) came in the hierarchy of de stijl movement second only to Piet Mondrian. ... Burgoyne Diller (1906 - 1965) was an American abstract painter. ...


Stockhausen described the final synthesis in this manner:

So serial thinking is something that's come into our consciousness and will be there forever: it's relativity and nothing else. It just says: Use all the components of any given number of elements, don't leave out individual elements, use them all with equal importance and try to find an equidistant scale so that certain steps are no larger than others. It's a spiritual and democratic attitude toward the world. The stars are organized in a serial way. Whenever you look at a certain star sign you find a limited number of elements with different intervals. If we more thoroughly studied the distances and proportions of the stars we'd probably find certain relationships of multiples based on some logarithmic scale or whatever the scale may be. (Cott 1973, 101)

Igor Stravinsky's adoption of serial techniques offers an example of the level of influence that serialism had after the Second World War. Previously Stravinsky had used series of notes without rhythmic or harmonic implications (Shatzkin 1977). Because many of the basic techniques of serial composition have analogs in traditional counterpoint, uses of inversion, retrograde and retrograde inversion from before the war are not necessarily indicative of Stravinsky adopting Schoenbergian techniques. However with his meeting Robert Craft and acquaintance with younger composers, Stravinsky began to consciously study Schoenberg's music, as well as the music of Webern and later composers, and began to use the techniques in his own work, using, for example, serial techniques applied to fewer than 12 notes. Over the course of the 1950s he used procedures related to Messiaen, Webern and Berg. While it is difficult to label each and every work as "serial" in the strict definition, every major work of the period has clear uses and references to its ideas. Robert Lawson Craft (October 20th, 1923 - ) is an American conductor and writer on music best known for his intimate working friendship with Igor Stravinsky, a relationship which has resulted in a number of recordings and books. ...


During this period, the concept of serialism influenced not only new compositions but also the scholarly analysis of the classical masters. Adding to their professional tools of sonata form and tonality, scholars began to analyze previous works in the light of serial techniques; for example they found the use of row technique in previous composers going back to Mozart (Keller 1955). In particular, using the analytical tools of serialism, scholars noted that the orchestral outburst that introduces the development section half-way through the last movement of Mozart's next-to-last symphony is a tone row that Mozart punctuates in a very modern and violent episode that Michael Steinberg called "rude octaves and frozen silences" (Steinberg 1998:400). This article includes a list of works cited or a list of external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks in-text citations. ... Tonality is a system of writing music according to certain hierarchical pitch relationships around a key center or tonic. ... This article includes a list of works cited or a list of external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks in-text citations. ... Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote his Symphony No. ...


Furthermore, the organizing principles of serialism inspired mathematical analogues, such as uses of set theory, group theory, operators, and parametrization, for example in the post-war works of Elliott Carter, Iannis Xenakis, and Witold Lutosławski. Likewise, the mathematical analogues in integral serialism were influential in the development of electronic music and synthesized music. The first European piece using total serialism may have been Nummer 2 (1951) for 13 instruments by Karel Goeyvaerts, although in America Milton Babbitt's Three Compositions for Piano (1947) is also credited with being the earliest total serial piece. Musical set theory is a atonal or post-tonal method of musical analysis and composition which is based on explaining and proving musical phenomena, taken as sets and subsets, using mathematical rules and notation and using that information to gain insight to compositions or their creation. ... Group theory is that branch of mathematics concerned with the study of groups. ... This article is about operators in mathematics, for other kinds of operators see operator (disambiguation). ... The factual accuracy of this article is disputed. ... Elliott Cook Carter, Jr. ... Iannis Xenakis in 1975. ... Witold LutosÅ‚awski at his home. ... For other uses, see Electronic music (disambiguation). ... Nummer 2 for thirteen instruments (1951), by Karel Goeyvaerts, (also called Opus 2 for thirteen instruments) has been claimed to be the first total serial composition[1] (although Milton Babbitts Three Compositions for Piano (1947) is also so credited, and predates Goeyvaertss work by four years). ... Karel Goeyvaerts (Antwerp Jun 8, 1923 - February 3, 1993, Antwerp) was a composer. ... Milton Byron Babbitt (born May 10, 1916) is an American composer. ...


Serialism in the present

Reactions to and against serialism

Some music theorists have criticized serialism on the basis that the compositional strategies employed are often incompatible with the way information is extracted by the human mind from a piece of music. Nicolas Ruwet (1959) was one of the first to criticise serialism through a comparison with linguistic structures. Henri Pousseur (1959) questioned the equivalence made by Ruwet between phoneme and the single note, and suggested that analyses of serial compositions that Ruwet names as exceptions to his criticisms might "register the realities of perception more accurately." Later writers have continued Ruwet's line of reasoning. Fred Lerdahl, for example, outlines this subject further in his essay "Cognitive Constraints on Compositional Systems" (Lerdahl 1988). Lehrdahl has in turn been criticized for excluding "the possibility of other, non-hierarchical methods of achieving musical coherence," and for concentrating on the audibility of tone rows (Grant 2001, 219), and the portion of his essay focussing on Boulez's "multiplication" technique (exemplified in three movements of Le Marteau sans maître) has been challenged on perceptual grounds by Stephen Heinemann (1998) and Ulrich Mosch (2004). Henri Pousseur (Composer Born 1929) Studied at the Academies of Music in Liège and in Brussels. ... Fred Lerdahls Cognitive Constraints on Compositional Systems cites Pierre Boulezs Le Marteau sans Maître (1954) as an example of a huge gap between compositional system and cognized result, though he could have illustrated just as well with works by Milton Babbitt, Elliott Carter, Luigi Nono, Karlheinz Stockhausen...


Within the community of modern music, exactly what constituted serialism was also a matter of debate. The conventional English usage is that the word "serial" applies to all 12-tone music, which is a "subset" of serial music, and it is this usage that is generally intended in reference works. Nevertheless, a large body of music exists that is called "serial" but does not employ note-rows at all, let alone twelve-tone technique (e.g., Stockhausen's Stimmung, Pousseur's Scambi). Stimmung is also the german word for mood Stimmung, for 6 vocalists & 6 microphones, is a piece by Karlheinz Stockhausen written in 1968 and commissioned by the City of Cologne for the Collegium Vocale. ...


Theory of serial music

The vocabulary of serialism is rooted in set theory, and uses a quasi-mathematical language to describe how the basic sets are manipulated to produce the final result. Musical set theory is often used to analyze and compose serial music, but may also be used to study tonal music and nonserial atonal music. Musical set theory is a atonal or post-tonal method of musical analysis and composition which is based on explaining and proving musical phenomena, taken as sets and subsets, using mathematical rules and notation and using that information to gain insight to compositions or their creation. ... Tonality is a system of writing music according to certain hierarchical pitch relationships around a key center or tonic. ... Atonality describes music not conforming to the system of tonal hierarchies, which characterizes the sound of classical European music between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries. ...


The basis for serial composition is Schoenberg's twelve-tone technique, where the 12 notes of the basic chromatic scale are organized into a row. This "basic" row is then used to create permutations, that is, rows derived from the basic set by reordering its elements. The row may be used to produce a set of intervals, or a composer may have wanted to use a particular succession of intervals, from which the original row was created. A row which uses all of the intervals in their ascending form once is an all-interval row. In addition to permutations, the basic row may have some set of notes derived from it which is used to create a new row, these are derived sets. Twelve-tone technique (also dodecaphony) is a method of musical composition devised by Arnold Schoenberg. ...


Because there are tonal chord progressions which use all 12 notes, it is possible to create pitch rows with very strong tonal implications, and even to write tonal music using 12-tone technique. Most tone rows contain subsets that can imply a pitch center; a composer can create music centered on one or more of the row's constituent pitches by emphasizing or avoiding these subsets, respectively, as well as through other, more complex compositional devices (Newlin 1974; Perle 1977). The tonic is the first note of a musical scale, and in the tonal method of music composition it is extremely important. ...


To serialize other elements of music, a system quantifying an identifiable element must be created or defined (this is called "parametrization", after the term in mathematics). For example, if duration is to be serialized, then a set of durations must be specified. If tone colour, then the a set of separate tone colours must be identified, and so on. See Cartesian coordinate system or Coordinates (elementary mathematics) for a more elementary introduction to this topic. ...


The selected set or sets, their permutations and derived sets form the basic material with which the composer works.


Composition using 12-tone serial methods focuses on each appearance of the collection of twelve chromatic notes, called an aggregate. (Sets of more or fewer pitches, or of elements other than pitch may be treated analogously.) The principle is that in a row, no element of the aggregate should be reused until all of the other members have been used, and each member must appear only in its place in the series. This rule is violated in numerous works still termed "serial".


An aggregate may be divided into subsets, and all the members of the aggregate not part of any one subset are said to be its complement. A subset is self-complementing if it contains half of the set and its complement is also a permutation of the original subset. This is most commonly seen with hexachords or 6 notes of a basic tone row. A hexachord which is self-complementing for a particular permutatition is referred to as prime combinatorial. A hexachord which is self complementing for all of the canonic operations – Inversion, Retrograde and Retrograde Inversion – is referred to as all-combinatorial.


The composer then presents the aggregate. If there are multiple serial sets, or if several parameters are associated with the same set, then a presentation will have these values calculated. Large-scale design may be achieved through the use of combinatorial devices, for example, subjecting a subset of the basic set to a series of combinatorial devices.


Important composers

Further information: List of pieces which use serialism

List of pieces which use serialism, by composer: Palle Mikkelbourg Aura Influenced deeply by serialism and the inspiration of Gil Evans, Mikkelbourg composed a theme from ten notes based on the letters of Davis first and last names. ... Gilbert Amy (born 1936 in Paris, France) is a French composer and conductor. ... Louis Andriessen (born June 6, 1939) is a Dutch composer, son of the composer Hendrik Andriessen (1892-1981) and brother of composer Jurriaan Andriessen (1925-1996). ... Hans Erich Apostel (born 1901 in Karlsruhe; died 1972 in Vienna) was a German-born Austrian composer of classical music. ... Kees van Baaren (born 22 October 1906 in Enschede; died 2 September 1970 Oegstgeest) was a Dutch composer and teacher. ... Milton Byron Babbitt (born May 10, 1916) is an American composer. ... Don Banks (b. ... Jean Barraqué (January 17, 1928 – August 17, 1973) was a French composer. ... Bust of Alban Berg at Schiefling, Carinthia, Austria Alban Maria Johannes Berg (February 9, 1885 – December 24, 1935) was an Austrian composer. ... Arthur Berger (May 15, 1912 in New York City –- October 7, 2003 in Boston, Massachusetts) was a composer who has been described as a New Mannerist. ... Erik Bergman (born 1911) is an influential composer of classical music from Finland. ... Luciano Berio (October 24, 1925 – May 27, 2003) was an Italian composer. ... André Boucourechliev (July 28, 1925 – November 13, 1997) was a French composer of Bulgarian origin. ... Pierre Boulez Pierre Boulez (IPA: /pjɛʁ.buˈlÉ›z/) (born March 26, 1925) is a conductor and composer of classical music. ... Martin Boykan (b. ... Jacques Calonne (born 1930 in Mons) is a Belgian artist, composer, singer, actor, logogramist, and writer. ... Niccolò Castiglioni (July 17, 1933-September 7, 1996) was an Italian composer and pianist. ... Aldo Clementi (born 1925 in Catania) is an Italian composer. ... Aaron Copland Aaron Copland (November 14, 1900 – December 2, 1990) was an American composer of concert and film music, as well as an accomplished pianist. ... Luigi Dallapiccola (February 3, 1904 – February 19, 1975) was an Italian composer known for his lyrical twelve-tone compositions. ... Franco Donatoni (1927, Verona-17 August 2000) was an Italian composer of art music. ... Hanns Eisler (July 6, 1898 - September 6, 1962) was a German and Austrian composer. ... Franco Evangelisti (January 21, 1926 - January 28, 1980), was an Italian composer specifically interested in the scientific theories behind sound. ... // Brian John Peter Ferneyhough (born 16 January 1943 in Coventry) is an English composer. ... Irving Fine (December 3, 1914–August 23, 1962) was a US composer. ... Roberto Gerhard (born Robert Juan Rene Gerhard, September 25, 1896 in Valls, Spain; died January 5, 1970 in Cambridge, England), was a Spanish Catalan composer and musical scholar and writer whose works are among the most important produced by any composer from Spain in the twentieth century. ... Alberto Evaristo Ginastera (Buenos Aires, April 11, 1916 – June 25, 1983 Geneva) was an Argentinian composer of classical music. ... Karel Goeyvaerts (Antwerp Jun 8, 1923 - February 3, 1993, Antwerp) was a composer. ... Glenn Herbert Gould[1][2] (September 25, 1932 – October 4, 1982) was a Canadian pianist, noted especially for his recordings of the music of Johann Sebastian Bach, his remarkable technical proficiency, and his eccentric piano technique and personality. ... Lou Silver Harrison (May 14, 1917 - February 2, 2003) was an American composer. ... Jonathan Harvey (born 3 May 1939 in Sutton Coldfield) is a British composer. ... Hans Werner Henze (born July 1, 1926 in Gütersloh, Westphalia, Germany) is a composer well known for his left-wing political beliefs. ... York Höller (born 11 January 1944 in Leverkusen) is a German composer and Professor of composition at the Hochschule für Musik Köln. ... Heinz Holliger (born May 21, 1939) is a Swiss oboist and composer. ... G.W. (Bill) Hopkins, 5 June 1943 - March 1981, British composer, pianist and writer on music // Biography Hopkins was born in Stockport, Cheshire; his mother was educationally subnormal and unable to look after him, and he was raised by aunts. ... Klaus Huber (born November 30, 1924 in Bern, Switzerland) is a Swiss composer. ... Hanns Jelinek (December 5, 1901 – January 27, 1969) was an Austrian composer who is also known under the pseudonym Hanns Elin. ... Ben Johnston Benjamin Burwell Johnston, Junior (born March 15, 1926 in Macon, Georgia) is a composer of contemporary music in the just intonation system. ... Rudolf Kelterborn (born September 3, 1931, Basel) is a Swiss musician and composer. ... Gottfried Michael Koenig (born 1926 in Magdeburg) is a contemporary German-Dutch composer. ... Ernst Krenek Ernst Krenek (August 23, 1900 – December 22, 1991) was an Austrian-born composer of Czech ancestry; throughout his life he insisted that his name be written Krenek rather than KÅ™enek, and that it should be pronounced as a German word. ... René Leibowitz (February 17, 1913 – August 29, 1972) was a French composer, conductor, music theorist and teacher born in Warsaw, Poland. ... Ingvar Natanael Lidholm (born 24th Feb, 1921) is a Swedish composer. ... Bruno Maderna (April 21, 1920 - November 13, 1973) was an Italian-German conductor and composer. ... Ursula Mamlok (born 1 Feb 1928) is an American composer and teacher. ... Philippe Manoury (born June 19, 1952) is a French composer. ... Donald Martino (May 16, 1931–December 8, 2005) was a Pulitzer Prize winning American composer. ... Paul Méfano (Basra (Iraq), 6 March 1937), is a French composer and conductor. ... Jacques-Louis Monod (b. ... Robert Morris (born 1943 in Cheltenham, England) is an American composer and music theorist. ... Grave of Nono in the San Michele Cemetery, Venice. ... Per NørgÃ¥rd (b. ... Krzysztof Penderecki. ... Barbara Pentland (1912-2000) was one of the pre-eminent members of the generation of Canadian composers who came to artistic maturity in the years following World War Two. ... Goffredo Petrassi (July 16, 1904 – March 3, 2003) was an Italian composer of modern classical music. ... Michel Paul Philippot (born 2 February 1925 in Verzy, died 28 July 1996 in Vincennes) was a French composer, mathematician, acoustician, musicologist, aesthetician, broadcaster, and educator. ... Walter Hamor Piston Jr. ... Henri Pousseur (Composer Born 1929) Studied at the Academies of Music in Liège and in Brussels. ... American composer and teacher at the University of California at San Diego Roger Reynolds was born July 18, 1934 in Detroit, Michigan. ... Terry Riley – (Portrait by Betty Freeman) Terry Riley (born 24 June 1935) is an American composer associated with the minimalist school. ... George Rochberg, (July 5, 1918, Paterson, New Jersey – May 29, 2005, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania) was an American composer of contemporary classical music. ... Peter Schat (June 5, 1935, in Utrecht - February 10, 2003, in Amsterdam) was a Dutch composer. ... Dieter Schnebel (born 1930 in Lahr/Baden) is a composer. ... Arnold Schoenberg, Los Angeles, 1948 Arnold Schoenberg (pronounced [ˈaːrnÉ”lt ˈʃøːnbÉ›rk]) (13 September 1874 – 13 July 1951) was an Austrian and later American composer, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School. ... Humphrey Searle (August 26, 1915 - May 12, 1982) was a British composer. ... Mátyás Seiber (May 4, 1905 – September 24, 1960) was a Hungarian-born composer who lived in England from 1935 onward. ... Roger Huntington Sessions (28 December 1896 – 16 March 1985) was an American composer, critic and teacher of music. ... Categories: 1901 births | 1949 deaths | 20th century classical composers | Violinists | Greek musicians | Composers stubs ... Roger Smalley (born 1943 in Manchester, UK) is a British-Australian composer, pianist and conductor. ... Ann Southam (born in Winnipeg on 4 February 1937) is a Canadian composer. ... Leopold Spinner (26 April 1906 - 12 August 1980), Austrian-born, British-domiciled composer and editor. ... Karlheinz Stockhausen (born August 22, 1928) is a German composer, and one of the most important and controversial composers of the 20th century (Barret 1988, 45; Harvey 1975b, 705; Hopkins 1972, 33; Klein 1968, 117; Power 1990, 30). ... Igor Stravinsky. ... Richard Swift (b. ... Camillo Togni (Gussago, near Brescia 18 October1922 - Brescia, 28 November 1993) was an Italian composer, teacher, and pianist. ... Gilles Tremblay (born September 6, 1932) is a Canadian composer. ... Wladimir Rudolfowitsch Vogel (b. ... Anton Webern (December 3, 1883 – September 15, 1945) was an Austrian composer and conductor. ... Hugo Weisgall (1912–1997) was a American composer, known chiefly for opera and vocal music. ... Peter Talbot Westergaard (born 1931) is an American composer and music theorist. ... Stefan Wolpe (August 25, 1902 – April 4, 1972) was a German-born composer. ... Charles Wuorinen (born June 9, 1938 in New York City) is an American composer. ... La Monte Young (born October 14, 1935) is an American composer whose eccentric and often hard-to-find works have been included among the most important post World War II avant-garde or experimental music. ...

References

  • Bandur, Markus. 2001. Aesthetics of Total Serialism: Contemporary Research from Music to Architecture. Basel, Boston and Berlin: Birkhäuser.
  • Bochner, Mel. 1967. "The Serial Attitude". Artforum 6, no. 4 (December): 28–33.
  • Cott, Jonathan. 1973. Stockhausen; Conversations with the Composer, New York: Simon & Schuster.
  • Felder, David. 1977. “An Interview with Karlheinz Stockhausen.” Perspectives of New Music 16, no. 1 (Fall-Winter): 85–101.
  • Forte, Allen. 1964. "A Theory of Set-Complexes for Music." Journal of Music Theory 8, no. 2 (Winter): 136-84.
  • Forte, Allen. 1973. The Structure of Atonal Music. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.
  • Forte, Allen. 1998. The Atonal Music of Anton Webern. New Haven: Yale University Press.
  • Gollin, Edward. 2007. "Multi-Aggregate Cycles and Multi-Aggregate Serial Techniques in the Music of Béla Bartók." Music Theory Spectrum 29, no. 2 (Fall): 143–76.
  • Grant, Morag Josephine. 2001. Serial Music Serial Aesthetics: Compositional Theory in Post-War Europe. Music in the Twentieth Century, Arnold Whitall, general editor. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0521804582
  • Guderian, Dietmar. 1985. “Serielle Strukturen und harmonikale Systeme.” In Vom Klang der Bilder: die Musik in der Kunst des 20. Jahrhunderts, edited by Karin von Maur, 434–37. Munich: Prestel-Verlag.
  • Heinemann, Stephen. 1998. "Pitch-Class Set Multiplication in Theory and Practice." Music Theory Spectrum 20, no. 1:72-96.
  • Keller, Hans. 1955. "Strict Serial Technique in Classical Music." Tempo (new series) no. 37 (Autumn): 12-16, 21-24.
  • Leibowitz, René. 1947. Schoenberg et son école: l'étape contemporaine du langage musical. [Paris]: J.B. Janin. (English edition, as Schoenberg and His School: The Contemporary Stage in the Language of Music. Translated by Dika Newlin. New York: Philosophocal Library, 1949).
  • Lerdahl, Fred. 1988. "Cognitive Constraints on Compositional Systems." In Generative Processes in Music, ed. John Sloboda. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Reprinted in Contemporary Music Review 6, no. 2 (1992):97-121.
  • Lerdahl, Fred, and Ray Jackendoff. 1983. A Generative Theory of Tonal Music. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press.
  • Meyer, Leonard B. 1967. Music, the Arts, and Ideas: Patterns and Predictions in Twentieth-Century Culture. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press. (Second edition 1994.)
  • Morgan, Robert. 1975. "Stockhausen's Writings on Music". Musical Quarterly 61, no. 1 (January): 1–16. Reprinted in the Musical Quarterly 75, no. 4 (Winter 1991): 194–206.
  • Mosch, Ulrich. 2004. Musikalisches Hören serieller Musik: Untersuchungen am Beispiel von Pierre Boulez’ «Le Marteau sans maître». Saarbrücken: Pfau-Verlag.
  • Newlin, Dika. 1974. "Secret Tonality in Schoenberg's Piano Concerto." Perspectives of New Music 13, no. 1 (Fall-Winter):137-39.
  • Perle, George. 1962. Serial Composition and Atonality: An Introduction to the Music of Schoenberg, Berg, and Webern. Berkeley: Univerity of California Press.
  • Perle, George. 1977. Twelve-tone Tonality. Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Pousseur, Henri. 1959. “Forme et pratique musicales.” Revue Belge de Musicologie 13:98–116. Slightly revised and expanded version, trans. into English as “Music, Form and Practice (An Attempt to Reconcile Some Contradictions) ”, Die Reihe 6 (1964): 77–93.
  • Rahn, John. 1980. Basic Atonal Theory. New York: Schirmer Books.
  • Ruwet, Nicolas. 1959. “Contradictions du langage sériel.” Revue Belge de Musicologie 13 (1959), 83–97. English trans., as “Contradictions within the Serial Language”, Die Reihe 6 (1964): 65–76.
  • Savage, Roger, and John Caldell (eds.). 1989. Structure and Sorcery: The Aesthetetics of Post-War Serial Composition and Indeterminancy. [Place]: Garland. ISBN 0-8240-2041-3.
  • Schoenberg, Arnold. Style and Idea: Selected Writings of Arnold Schoenberg. Edited by Leonard Stein, translated by Leo Black. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press. ISBN 0-520-05294-3.
  • Scruton, Roger. 1997. Aesthetics of Music. Oxford: Clarendon Press. ISBN 0-19-816638-9. Quoted in Arved Ashbey, The Pleasure of Modernist Music (University of Rochester Press, 2004) p.122. ISBN 1-58046-143-3.
  • Shatzkin, Merton. 1977. "A Pre-Cantata Serialism in Stravinsky". Perspectives of New Music 16, no. 1 (Fall-Winter): 139–43.
  • Smith-Brindle, Reginald. 1966. Serial Composition. London, New York: Oxford University Press.
  • Steinberg, Michael. 1998. The Symphony: A Listener's Guide. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Stockhausen, Karlheinz, and Rudolf Frisius. 1998. "Es geht aufwärts". In: Karlheinz Stockhausen, Texte zur Musik 9, edited by Christoph von Blumröder, 391–512. Kürten: Stockhausen-Verlag.
  • Straus, Joseph N. 1999. "The Myth of Serial 'Tyranny' in the 1950s and 1960s." Musical Quarterly 83:301–43.
  • Sykora, Katharina. 1983. Das Phänomen des Seriellen in der Kunst: Aspekte einer künstlerischen Methode von Monet bis zur amerikanischen Pop Art. Würzburg: Könighausen + Neumann.
  • White, Eric Walter, and Jeremy Noble. 1984. "Stravinsky". In The New Grove Modern Masters. London: Macmillan.

External links

Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to:
Serialism
  • Art of the States: serial/twelve-note serial and/or twelve-note works by American composers.
  • The tone row in the last movement of Mozart's Symphony No. 40. Beginning at Bar 128 on page 54, the tone row might be the following: B, C, D, Eb, F#, Bb, C#, F, G#, A, E, G -- where the exposition of the last three notes of the tone row trails into the sounding of the A major dominant chord for the d minor development section that follows. The first page of Mozart's Symphony No. 40 can be found at this link.
Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Wikiquote is one of a family of wiki-based projects run by the Wikimedia Foundation, running on MediaWiki software. ... In music, a tone row or note row is a permutation, an arrangement or ordering, of the twelve notes of the chromatic scale. ... Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote his Symphony No. ... For Christian theological modernism, see Liberal Christianity and Modernism (Roman Catholicism). ... For Christian theological modernism, see Liberal Christianity and Modernism (Roman Catholicism). ... Modernity is a term used to describe the condition of being related to modernism. ... Modern history describes the history of the Modern Times, the era after the Middle Ages. ... Modernism in musicis characterized by a desire for or belief in progressand science, surrealism, anti-romanticism, politicaladvocacy, general intellectualism, and/or a breaking with tradition or common practice. ... Modernist literature is the literary form of Modernism and especially High modernism; it should not be confused with modern literature, which is the history of the modern novel and modern poetry as one. ... Mountebanks ... Dejeuner sur lHerbe by Pablo Picasso At the Moulin Rouge: Two Women Waltzing by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, 1892 The Scream by Edvard Munch, 1893 I and the Village by Marc Chagall, 1911 Fountain by Marcel Duchamp, 1917 Campbells Soup Cans 1962 Synthetic polymer paint on thirty-two... Modern dance is often performed in bare feet. ... Modern architecture, not to be confused with contemporary architecture, is a term given to a number of building styles with similar characteristics, primarily the simplification of form and the elimination of ornament. ... Romantics redirects here. ... Postmodernism (sometimes abbreviated Po-mo[1]) is a term originating in architecture, literally after the modern, denoting a style that is more ornamental than modernism, and which borrows from previous architectural styles, often in a playful or ironic fashion. ...

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