Context Module One

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Context Module One (please click this button)

These questions are purposely somewhat open ended to encourage you to think and to explore the broader context of two of the pieces we are rehearsing this semester. No partial credit is given. This module must be completed on time and in its entirety in order to receive credit.

Franz Schubert (1797-1828) was eighteen years old in 1815-1816 when he wrote the both his Mass in Bb (from which we are performing the Gloria) and the Mass in G. Using search engines of your choice, surf the web to find resources to help you respond to the following questions:

1. What do you imagine it was like to be a teenager in 1815-1816? What was happening in the world at that time (e.g., some specific political, religious, and/or cultural events)? Include the URL (web page address) of at least two web sites that you consulted for your response.

2. What were some of the musical characteristics/contexts of the day? To what degree do you think the 18 year old Schubert embraced and/or deviated from them in this setting of the Gloria? Include the URL (web page address) of at least two web sites that you consulted for your response.

3. R. Murray Schafer is a philosopher of music as well as a composer. What philosophical perspectives (about the nature of musical sound, the world, the way people should relate to the world, etc.) do you think are present, either explicitly or implicitly, in "Miniwanka"? The following program note may be of interest as a start to your reflection: "Miniwanka is an imitative piece that depicts the life cycle of water, from rain to streams, quiet lakes, broad rivers, and on to the ocean. The text is made up of words for water, rain, stream, river, fog and ocean in ten North-American Indian Languages. As is typical of Schafer's work, the written score is a hybrid of traditional music notation and graphic or pictorial notation."