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Beyond the ScoreMusic as Performance$
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Nicholas Cook

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199357406

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199357406.001.0001

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What the Theorist Heard

What the Theorist Heard

(p.56) 3 What the Theorist Heard
Beyond the Score

Nicholas Cook

Oxford University Press

Schenkerian theory, based on the work of the Viennese musician, writer, and teacher Heinrich Schenker (1868–1935), is nowadays the dominant theoretically informed performance pedagogy. But this pedagogy and present-day theorists’ understanding of Schenkerian theory are conditioned by a style of performance quite different from what Schenker had in mind. By reading Schenker’s writings in light of early twentieth-century performances, such as Eugen d’Albert’s, the chapter shows how Schenkerian approaches have been appropriated for a style of performance that was only coming into being in Schenker’s day, and that he opposed: the style that the chapter calls structuralist but that is in essence the sound of modernism. Through a brief history of recordings of Schubert’s Impromptu op. 90 no. 3, the chapter defines key distinctions between this performance style and the early twentieth-century style I call rhetorical performance.

Keywords:   Schenker, D’Albert, Schubert, structuralist, rhetorical

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