Posted in Listening for Part 4: Moving towards 20th century

Serialism

In this blog post I will list the serialist compositions I’ve listened to. Although in my listening log for Composing 1 I have included a few pieces in this style, I wasn’t really aware of the techniques and background that the music covered, and as such, approaching the style this time felt very different and anew.

Anton Webern – String Trio

It is quite incredible that Webern managed to incorporate forty-four out of forty-eight row transformations of the basic primary row in both movements of the trio. However, I personally feel like I am unable to fully appreciate this musical achievement, since at the moment I find that unlike Schoenberg’s twelve-tone music, I could barely designate any expressive thematic components and developments. Although I could distinguish clearly in the notation the tripartite ABA’ structure in the first movement and a somewhat sonata form in the second, most of the time I felt like I was listening to a mosaic structure I am unable to understand – though non-thematic approach to music was indeed one of Webern’s goals.

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