Posted by Charles Brooks on May 12, 1999 at 18:06:39:
In Reply to: Re: the importance or rhythm? posted by dgee on May 12, 1999 at 16:44:53:
I find the topic of harmonic rhythm and harmony in general most interesting. Just this year I swapped teachers from one who knew little about harmony to one who is extremely knowledgeable about harmonic theory. Until my experiences with this new teacher I sidelined knowledge of harmony as to being of only a little use, thinking that I was doing everything intuitively anyway. But my ideas on this changed dramatically with my new teacher. I was suddenly enlightened when we started to discuss, in depth, the harmony of the 2nd Bach suite - playing ambiguous phrases as if they were in one key, and then as if they were in another and altering the tuning to suite. My regrets now are that I paid very little attention to my theory teacher in the first few years of varsity (she was a student of Messian and very well learned in the topic) and failed to link up her teaching with what I was doing in cello at the time. I cant help but wonder how many people this happens to, particularly non pianists who I believe find the study of theory more difficult. I remember seeing a great video of Yo yo Ma at tanglewood where, upon commencing work on the Gruber concerto, he was working in tandem with the orchestra, composer, and a harmony specialist and musicologist from Harvard. I wish this kind of inter-field co-operation would happen more often, especially at the earlier levels of study as I am finding myself suddenly having to start my theory studies anew in order for them to be fluent enough to be of use.
: The singer you mentioned is cerrtainlyone of the great performers of the century, yes? I remember his Schubert in particular. I think most professionals have good rhythm because they first start understanding rhythm and harmonic movement and phrasing as parts of a whole. Later the subtle nuance of rhythm is added to the fundamentals. Relying on taste as a determinent of expressive is our goal. The development and refinement of good taste is our goal and life-long pursuit. DG
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