The third art: The embodiment of meaning through texture in the choral works of Robert Kyr
AuthorWyers, Giselle Eleanor
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe purpose of this document is to explore the relationship between text, texture, and meaning, in selected choral works of Robert Kyr (born 1952). It will show that texture is used consistently by Kyr as an expressive device to illuminate the inner meaning of the text. Kyr weaves text into musical texture, and in the fusion of text and music, creates a third art form that is more than the sum of its original parts. It is neither text set to music, nor music written to fit within a preexistent text. Instead, all dimensions of the composition are conceived simultaneously. Through this powerful synergy, the text is magnified and transformed through music, especially through its textural aspects. This study begins with a short biographical sketch of Robert Kyr, followed by a discussion of its scope, especially with respect to a working definition of texture. This is followed by a discussion of Kyr's unique process of fusing text with music. Finally, several in-depth analyses of representative works will show how Kyr's treatment of texture helps to bring out the deepest meaning of his chosen texts. The following works are examined in depth: Magnificat, Songs of the Shining Wind, movement 4 ("Early Light/A Hair of Sound"); "De Profundis" (from A Passion According to Four Evangelists); Italian Motets, movement 3 ("Canticle of the Brother Sun"); and Let There Be Music , all four movements.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Music and Dance