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Paper Session
Nov 21, 2021 12:00 Noon - 12:50 PM(America/Chicago)
20211121T1200 20211121T1250 America/Chicago Early Modern Composerly Strategies AMS 2021 ams@amsmusicology.org
Echoes of Josquin: Counterpoint, Similarity, and the Digital Ear
Individual Paper 12:00 Noon - 12:50 PM (America/Chicago) 2021/11/21 18:00:00 UTC - 2021/11/21 18:50:00 UTC

How were Josquin's works heard and reworked by his contemporaries and followers? And how (at a distance of some 500 years) can digital tools help us to understand the fabric of those adaptations? Focussing on the Imitation (or Parody) Mass of the 16th century, Citations:  The Renaissance Imitation Mass (CRIM) (https://crimproject.org) has been investigating these and other questions, building a systematic set of vocabularies for analysis (http://bit.ly/363wItb), and assembling a database of thousands of human observations about modeling in dozens of pairs of Masses and models (including several based on works by Josquin des Prez).  If counterpoint is a craft of combinations, then the Imitation Mass involves the art of recombination on a massive scale. These works offer an unparalleled way to learn how composers heard (and understood) each other's music, variously echoing, revising, and modernizing compositional choices for new generations of listeners.

Thanks to a major new grant from the American Council of Learned Societies (through 2022) CRIM is now in a new phase of work that will put the insights of musicologists and data scientists into counterpoint with each other, modeling human expertise in terms that can be used to teach machines to help us listen for patterns of transformation, and presenting the results of automated score-reading in forms that scholars can interrogate and refine. Using motets by Josquin (including pieces like Ave maria, Mente tota, and Benedicta es) and their reworkings by successive generations of his imitators (from Antoine de Févin to Adrian Willaert, and from Cristóbal de Morales to Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina) as focal points, we can begin to tell the story of those workings with both new precision and new scope. No less importantly, we can see how digital tools invite us to consider new notions of musical similarity, and new modes of scholarly communication. 

Presenters
RF
Richard Freedman
Haverford College
From “Scientific” Musician to Musical Scientist: Galilei _padre e figlio_ and Just Intonation
Individual Paper 12:00 Noon - 12:50 PM (America/Chicago) 2021/11/21 18:00:00 UTC - 2021/11/21 18:50:00 UTC

       There is likely no clearer watershed epoch in the history of answers to the problem of consonance than the first stage of the Scientific Revolution, 1580–1650. Within the broader context of its "mechanization of the world picture" (following E. J. Dijksterhuis), developments in empiricism and the scientific method led to musico-scientific innovations whose originality would arguably remain unparalleled until the discoveries of Hermann von Helmholtz in the second half of the 19th century. And yet, though historians of science and musicologists alike have spilled much ink in order to situate answers to the problem of consonance in the philosophical and aesthetic context of the first stage of the Scientific Revolution, they have all too often privileged Vincenzo Galilei at the expense of his first-born son Galileo. The present study fills this gap through a comparative analysis of the attitudes of Galilei _padre e figlio_ with respect to just intonation (namely Vincenzo's apparent rejection of Zarlino's _Senario_ and embrace of equal temperament vs. Galileo's reliance on numeric commensurability of frequencies as a basis for his psychoacoustical theorizing) in order to both shed light on a major moment in the history of the problem of consonance and to tease apart the generational dynamics at play in their differences of opinion. Drawing on evidence biographical and documentary before comparing Vincenzo's "experimental" methods to those of his son, I argue that the disagreements between this professional musician father and his professional scientist son are best understood as symptomatic of the divergence between pre-modern and early modern philosophies of empiricism, theory, and experiment, both writ large and as specifically applied to music. 

Presenters
JL
Jordan Lenchitz
Florida State University
Willaert's Contrapuntal Strategies
Individual Paper 12:00 Noon - 12:50 PM (America/Chicago) 2021/11/21 18:00:00 UTC - 2021/11/21 18:50:00 UTC

Willaert's counterpoint in the _Musica Nova_ has been described as "elusive" because it eschews clear-cut imitation, cadences, and contrasts of texture (Fromson 2001; Feldman 1995). I argue that to articulate structure, Willaert substitutes five contrapuntal procedures that I will illustrate with "Io mi rovolgo" from _Musica Nova_ (1559). Unlike most madrigal studies, which begin and end with text-music relations, my discussion is grounded in the notion that music is a semiotic system independent of any sung text (Agawu 1992; Monelle 2010), and that the musical features of Willaert's madrigal music may fruitfully be discussed before referring to their marriage with the text. The musical examples in Renaissance counterpoint treatises are always given without text, implying that music has its own laws that continue to obtain even as the composer sets a text, creating a world parallel to that of the text. 

The five techniques are: progressively linked soggetti (a melody first introduced as a countermelody is then reused as a principal subject, a technique described by Zarlino); mixed soggetti (they occur in no particular order, and break the relentless sequential introduction of new soggetti); contrapunto fugato (in which a long soggetto is decorated with shorter repeating motives-Schubert 2020); repeating blocks (long combinations); and quodlibet (several earlier melodies are brought back). 

These contrasting techniques interact with text in consistent ways. Progressive linkage is good for beginnings, as the successive lines of text are introduced gradually and in order. Mixed soggetti are not attached to specific text syllables, and serve a loosening function. Large blocks and contrapunto fugato sections are shorter and set the same line of text in all parts. Finally, in quodlibet sections, the old soggetti that come back are not attached to their original text syllables, transcending the text-soggetto relationship for a summative ending. In the almost total absence of cadences and clear modal and textural contrasts, these five contrapuntal procedures, like those Christopher Reynolds showed us in a Josquin chanson (1987), are the means of segmentation and contrast that have been missing from our study of Willaert. 

Presenters
ps
Peter Schubert
McGill University
Florida State University
McGill University
Haverford College
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