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1 Introduction The micro-chronological examination of Bartók's autographs is not entirely a new theme in Bartók scholarship. A study of the compositional process may necessarily involve the examination of the

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Compositional Process,” in The Past in the Present: Paper Read at the IMS Intercongressional Symposium and the 10th Meeting of the Cantus Planus. Budapest & Visegrád, 2000 , ed. by László DOBSZAY (Budapest: Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music, 2003), 499

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Most analyses of Bartók’s Contrasts focus on abstract compositional ideas such as musical language, form, and motivic unity. Manuscript sources, however, show that practical considerations played an equally important role in the compositional process. Bartók adventurously exploited the potentials of the instruments (clarinet, violin and piano) as well as that of the musicians (Benny Goodman and Joseph Szigeti) for whom he composed the piece, but, within certain boundaries, he was also ready to make concessions to them. Since Bartók was commissioned to write Contrasts, the composition had to fill a number of essentially practical requirements. When he began composing, he had to regard as given some of the basic characteristics of the work such as the instrumentation, the need to include virtuoso cadenzas for both soloists, number, tempi, and approximate duration of movements, as well as some stylistic features. Even so, the composer did not adhere strictly to all of the requirements. The compositional process of Contrasts, therefore, can be interpreted as a simultaneous realization of both practical and abstract ideas.

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Compositional process of the canon For further discussion, we should broadly reconstruct the compositional process of this canon, which will considerably affect our understanding of the music. There are three key facts. First, the draft of this piece

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-Laurent Aimard) gave him a useful “embodied knowledge” to assess how far he could go in his performative demands. Another quotation engages with Ligeti's compositional process: I am inclined to distinguish “good” music from “not so good” (or “unsatisfactory

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In spite of his mistrust in giving public explanations about his compositions, Bartók worked with great care on what we may call the narrative of a piece - the “spirit of the work” in his phrasing (spirit in the sense of the German Geist, the meaning, the characteristic quality). His “plans were concerned with the spirit of the new work and with technical problems (for instance, formal structure involved by the spirit of the work)” (Harvard Lectures, 1943). The best source to understand the narrative of multi-movement Bartók works is a close study of the creative process, primarily the sketches and the draft. The genesis of the Violin Concerto (1937-1938) reveals that to Zoltán Székely's request in 1936 Bartók first proposed a one-movement Konzertstück in variation form, i.e. the second movement. In the next step a full-size sonata-form piece emerging from the Tempo di verbunkos opening theme (as Bartók identified its character) of the present first movement could also have been an alternative one-movement Konzertstück of considerable size. Thus Bartók created two independent narratives: one for a fascinating variation, another for a big sonata-form movement written in a warmly melodic style with a special strategy of variations of the themes. Finally, because his violinist was expecting a regular three-movement concerto, by the addition of a finale he fulfilled the commission.

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technique shared by a group of composers of the same period. By re-examining these sources as traces of the compositional process, it is therefore possible to understand some principles of formal construction and musical invention, as well as compositional

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compositional events which followed the decision of adding this movement to the original four-movement concept. Although Somfai already described this part of the compositional process, during the preparation of volumes 29–30 of the Béla Bartók Complete

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) For piano solo (LW A307, SH499) The purpose of this paper is to clarify the compositional process of the revised version of the Cantico del Sol di San Francesco d’Assisi , especially focusing on the little

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This paper will address methodological issues, with application, specifically, to the 20th century or so of research on Hungarian folk music. One is able to test the hypothesis that medieval explanations for the compositional process best describe what is taking place compositionally in folksong by comparing the large collection of Hungarian folksongs with the equally vast material of the medieval sequence which was sung in Europe from approximately 875 to 1600. Hungarian folksong and the medieval Latin sequence have features in common. Medieval explanations of spiritual-emotional material, the compositional process, the essence of material or nature, and the differences between nature and artificie, also describe what actually takes place in folksong composition. This contribution to the classifying of folksongs will present a medieval explanation for the compositional process within Hungarian folk music. The author has chosen a type from hundreds of types ordered by several generations of Hungarian ethnomusicologists. The transcriptions of this type are compared. The century of transcriptions of the same melodies, demonstrates that transcription exhibits yet another area of composition, in that each transcriber reformed and recombined that material.

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