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Title: The 'Nicholsonian effect' : aspects of 'tone' in early nineteenth-century flute performance practice in England, with particular reference to the work of Charles Nicholson (1795-1837)
Author: Shaw, Martyn
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 2014
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Charles Nicholson (1795-1837) was one of the most important figures in the evolution of the flute. His influence on the design of the Boehm flute is widely acknowledged. However, the contribution he made as a catalyst for developments in flute performance practice in early nineteenth-century England, is not. Such was Nicholson’s reputation for variety of tone in his playing, that the term ‘Nicholsonian effect’ was coined. This research examines the tone of the flute, and uniquely places it within the context of the interrelationship between performance, pedagogy and flute-design in Nicholson’s work. Tone manipulation emerges as a crucial feature of the style with particular importance attached to three things: tone-colour, ‘vibration’ and the glide. The resulting tone variation constitutes the essence of the style. Research in this field is lacking, and has established only broader performing contexts. This research represents the first detailed study of the form and function of tone-colour, ‘vibration’ and the glide within early nineteenth-century English flute performance practice. An original ‘Nicholson’s “Improved” flute’ has been used to inform the research throughout this study. It will also be used to apply the research in the recital which forms the other half of my PhD submission.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: M Music