This is a study of “Jauk Manis,” a traditional Balinese dance piece that sheds light on the techniques of performance-based variation used in gamelan music. It is a free-standing dance piece derived from a character originally presented in the traditional dance drama, Calonarang. The Jauk character represents a guardian spirit. Its characterization is developed through the costume, choreography, and music of the solo dance. The musical accompaniment is defined by consistencies within its form, content, and rhythmic variation, however, no two performances of “Jauk Manis” are alike. The shared leadership roles of the dancer, drummer, and flute players contribute to the distinctiveness of each performance, as do the specific context and the interpersonal dynamics between a particular gamelan and dancer. A comparison of several renditions of “Jauk Manis,” illustrated by musical examples, reveals the range of variation that occurs in this dance. Ethnographic interviews with musicians and dancers explain the interaction among the various performers. The significance of this study is that it provides a model for comprehending sources of variation in other genres of Balinese music. An understanding of the interaction between the dancer and musicians in a more improvisational piece, such as “Jauk Manis,” illuminates the differences between one performance and the next in Balinese music generally. The research for this paper is based on field work conducted in Bali and the United States during 2013.
The voice, with its seemingly limitless capacity for expression, plays a powerful role in conveying emotion and meaning in music. Meaning is defined by Ian Cross and Elizabeth Tolbert as “[an] original something that refers to something else beyond itself” (2011: 24). In this paper, I use the word meaning to encompass the non-emotional responses, impressions, associations or experiences that occur within a listener while interacting with music. In the history of European concert music, discussions of emotion and meaning in music revolved around the voice beginning in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Before then, European writers did not believe that music had meaning in itself, but was merely a source of pleasure.
For my senior capstone project, I shall examine Charles Ives’s musical and philosophical place in American music history by way of his messy relationship with Romanticism and the European tradition. While striving to create a distinct American music braced with American philosophies and ideals, Ives liberally appropriated features of nineteenth century (Romantic) music and thought in his work. The first questions to address are related to influence: What nineteenth-century music did Ives hear throughout his composing life? What songs or pieces did he model while studying with Horatio Parker at Yale? What did he see in Beethoven as the ideal composer of the previous century? Next, I shall address his ideological and musical conflicts: How could Ives reconcile both his New England Protestant morality alongside his apparently “Transcendentalist” themes in his music and writings? More specifically, how does Ives’s second piano sonata, the “Concord” Sonata, use Romantic musical devices and ideological themes to produce a “modern” musical language? Finally, was Ives’s music an inevitable consequence of European Romanticism? Where does he fit in American music history? To answer these questions, I will read Ives’s own writings, his Memos and Essays, along with his correspondence with other composers and teachers. Ives scholars such as J. Peter Burkholder and Frank Rossiter will contribute, in large part, the secondary sources in my paper. In addition, I will analyze Ives’s Second Piano Sonata for both Romantic and Modern elements to trace influences beyond the well researched quoted melodies. The typical scholarly discussion around Ives’s musical and philosophical roots gives too much credit to his pioneering of American modernism and not enough attention to the European tradition from which he worked. My topic will contribute a more frank and less hagiographical view of Ives and his ideas’ conflicted nature.
The most recent innovations in the music industry that have been gaining attention are streaming services. Spotify is one such service that has garnered much media attention. In my thesis I question just how innovative this service is by comparing Spotify with its historical precedents. In doing so, I reveal that many aspects of Spotify continue patterns that have persisted for many years. However, there are truly innovative aspects of the service as well. Still, rather than subscribing to a technological determinism, I seek to emphasize the human agents that wield technologies and note these agents' susceptibility to corruption and monopolistic practices.