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The Shaping Forces in Music: An Inquiry into the Nature of Harmony, Melody, Counterpoing, Form. 9780486233468

The Shaping Forces in Music: An Inquiry into the Nature of Harmony, Melody, Counterpoing, Form

Dover Publications. 1987

Ficha técnica

  • EAN: 9780486233468
  • ISBN: 978-0-486-23346-8
  • Editorial: Dover Publications
  • Fecha de edición: 1987
  • Encuadernación: Rústica
  • Dimensiones: 14x21
  • Idioma: Inglés
  • Nº páginas: XXIII+260

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A masterful and original classical composer as well as a renowned composer of film scores, Ernst Toch (1887-1964) made a permanent contribution to music in this important and widely praised book. Based on a series of lectures given at Harvard in 1944 and first published in 1948, this book is a brilliant examination of the materials and concepts that are the basic building blocks of music ?harmony, melody, counterpoint and form.

An admirable reconciliation of tradicional and modern (mainly 12-tone) trends in composition, this book shows how all types of writing must respond to psychological wants of the listener and how similar goals may be achieved in seemingly opposed styles. Illustrationg his discussion with 390 musical examples, Toch not only introduces new ideas and approaches, but examines many age-old problems with clarity and precision -consonance, and dissonance, melody versys harmony, ornamental and fermentative counterpoint, form versus number, and more. His analyses of the expanding harmonic universe, the wave line of melody, and the formative influence of movement are particularly penetrating.

New to this edition are a biographical introduction by Toch's grandson, Lawrence Weschler; a previously unpublished letter from Thomas Mann to Toch about his book (in English translation); and a complete checklist of Toch's compositions. Intended for all those who have a minimum understanding of musical notation and theory, this book will appeal to music lovers, practical musicians and amateurs, and incipient composers.


Introduction to the Dover Edition (Lawrence Weschler)
Letter from Thomas Mann to Ernst Toch


I. Harmony and chord
-Consonance and dissonance
II. Harmony as arrested motion
-The influence of the situation
III. The expanding harmonic universe
-Subdivision of the half-tone

IV. Melody versus harmony
-The two components of melody
V. The wave line
-Melodic elasticity
-The "wind-up"
VI. How harmony influences melody
-The masculine type and the feminine type
VII. Deflections and other special features
-The encircling approach
-Iterances and elisions

VIII. The meaning of counterpoint
IX. Ornamental and fermentative counterpoint

X. The bases of form
-The meaning of form
-Larger forms
-Form versus number
XI. The art of joining
XII. The formative influence of movement
-Motif and theme
-The thematic motif
XIII. Beginning and ending

Checklist of compositions by Ernst Toch
Index of names

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