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Title: Czech piano music from Smetana to Janacek : style, development, significance
Author: Murphy, Sarah
ISNI:       0000 0001 2439 3062
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2009
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This dissertation will examine the development of Czech piano music through the key figures of Smetana, Dvorak, Foerster, Fibich, Novak, Suk, and Janacek between 1840 and 1912. This period begins with the early piano polkas of Smetana and ends with the last major solo piano work of Janacek in 1912. The chronological framework of the dissertation is important in defining its purpose: the early nineteenth century was a key period in Czech society, and one characterised by aesthetic debates Central to this was the Narodni Obrozeni (National Revival), and the social and cultural framework is essential for a full understanding of the output of the composers in question. At the start of the National Revival, music became invested with an ideological burden which meant that composers were responsible for creating a specifically Czech form of expression. One of the key dualities explored within this dissertation is that of European influence vs the absorption of Czech and Slavonic folk music in the musical languages of the individual composers, so the issue of national vs international is of primary importance here. The ideological backgound of the National Revival meant that opera was afforded more attention, and other genres were marginalised as a result of this focus. This introduces a second duality, namely that of piano music vs opera Previous literature examining, this period of Czech music has focused upon opera and neglected piano music. That which does exist is in Czech, and these writers have concentrated upon detailed analyses of individual works, meaning that a more macroscopic approach linking and connecting the key Czech composers of the period has not existed. This dissertation aims to combine this Czech literature with modern scholarship on surrounding, figures and musical movements in order to give a fuller and more multifaceted account of the period in question, and the role of the piano within it.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available