Chromatic Evolution of the Pre-Recapitulatory Harmony in Felix Mendelssohn's Songs without Words
AuthorAbdalla Abarca, Faez Ismael
KeywordsDominant of the Mediant
Songs without Words
AdvisorPomeroy, David B.
MetadataShow full item record
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.
AbstractIn Darwinian evolution, a living population evolves when it is exposed to the selection pressures of a new biological medium. Analogously, in my chromatic evolution a chord "evolves" when it is exposed to a new chromatic medium, forcing it to adapt and harmonically modify its pitch content. This is a process by which a diatonic, consonant chord is progressively transformed into a chromatic substitute, over a span of several similar works, without losing or modifying the chord’s resolution tendencies, harmonic function, or formal location. From a Schenkerian perspective—and using Felix Mendelssohn’s Songs without Words as my corpus study—I will demonstrate how the pre-recapitulatory dominant (the root-position dominant that conventionally precedes the recapitulation) progressively evolves into a highly chromatic substitute: the dominant of the mediant.
Degree ProgramGraduate College