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Title: Dimensions of allusion : synthesis affecting craft in the works of Huw Belling and in 20th and 21st century composition
Author: Belling, Huw
ISNI:       0000 0004 6421 7380
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2016
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This examination of my own works (presented largely in chronological order) and of related music by others, broadly concerns itself with appropriation and allusion on the part of twentieth and twenty-first century composers. It considers how the deliberate synthesis of existing works affects the responding composers' own output. To this end, whether surveying my own music or others', I do so within a four-pronged framework: 1. The philosophical premise and aesthetic of pieces which somehow appropriate existing composition (as claimed overtly by the composer, or inferred from available research). 2. The compositional procedure and techniques employed in the process of composing works which allude to or synthesise other pieces. 3. The product resulting from the interaction of the above two factors (naturally the latter is more concrete). 4. Critics' and scholars' responses: the basic phenomenology of the allusive element, synthesis, or stylistic appropriation, and the ethical problems surrounding any appropriation. My analyses address one or more of these connected points. They raise a number of significant questions. Is synthesis and re-composition (the latter taken to be more specifically referential) affective or effective? That is to say, is it aesthetically prescriptive? Can composers manage to quarantine 'Les objets trouvés' from their individual practice? Of interest are composers with individual credibility as innovators, whose craft is its own defence against criticism on dogmatic grounds. I consider what is to be gained, in terms of technique, and in terms of developing an aesthetic, from the process of specifically engaging with other pieces, and explore the effects of differing methods of synthesis as compared across compositional practices.
Supervisor: Saxton, Robert Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Composition (Music)--20th century ; Composition (Music)--21st century ; Music--Philosophy and aesthetics