MUSICAL EXOTICISM EXPLORED IN PIANO WORKS FROM THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY THROUGH THE EARLY TWENTIETH CENTURY
Lee, Alice Eunmi
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Musical exoticism is the evocation of a culture different from that of the composer. It occurs anytime a composer tries to conjure up the music of a country not his own. Although there have been studies of exoticism in the piano works of an individual composer, namely Debussy, there has not been a comprehensive study of musical exoticism in the piano literature as a whole. Upon chronological examination of the piano repertoire, general trends exhibiting exoticism become evident. The first general trend is the emergence of the Turkish style (alia turca) in the eighteenth century. Turkish style soon transmuted to the Hungarian-Gypsy style (all 'ongarese or style hongrois). [In Beethoven's Op. 129, it is alia ingharese.] Composers often alternated between the two styles even in the same composition. By the late nineteenth century, style hongrois was firmly entrenched in the musical language of Austro-German composers, as seen in the works of Brahms. In the nineteenth century, composers turned to the Middle East, North Africa and Spain for inspiration. In particular are several compositions emulating Spanish dance music, culminating in the Spanish works of Debussy and Ravel. The gamelans from Indonesia and objects from the Far East of Japan and China, brought by advances in trade and transportation, captivated the imagination of composers at the turn of the twentieth century. Also in the early twentieth century, composers tried emulating dance and jazz music coming from the Americas, such as the cakewalk, minstrelsy, and the blues. One sees the ever widening sphere of exotic inspiration for western music composers: from the Turkish invasions to the traveling Gypsies of Hungary; to the captivating dance rhythms, soulful cante jondo sections, and guitar flourishes of Spain; expanding further to the far reaches of Asia and the jazzy rhythms of the Americas. This performance dissertation consists of three recitals presented at the University of Maryland, and is documented on compact disc recordings which are housed within the University of Maryland Library System. The recordings present the music of Balakirev, Beethoven, Brahms, Chopin, Debussy, Haydn, Hummel, Milhaud, Moszkowski, Mozart, Ravel, and Schubert.