Varieties of Astronomical Inspiration for Musical Works: A Case Study of Judith Lang Zaimont’s Solo Piano Suite Jupiter’s Moons
AuthorMiller, Spencer Charles
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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, presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis research focuses on musical works based on astronomical objects and phenomena. Of the many astronomy-based works in the repertoire, most are influenced by ancient mythologies, human subjectivity, or aleatoric processes. Space exploration and advancement in modern cosmology over the past century have broadened humanity’s understanding of the physical universe, allowing for compositions inspired by the physical characteristics of astronomical objects. Jupiter’s Moons, written by Judith Lang Zaimont, is one such composition. The composer's knowledge of the features of the four Galilean moons of Jupiter—Europa, Io, Ganymede, and Callisto—impacted the composition in a significant way. The analysis of this work connects the features of the moons, such as the volcanic activity of Io and the magnetism of Ganymede, to specific musical elements in Lang Zaimont’s work, including her treatment of register, meter, tonality, phrasing, articulation, and pedaling.
Degree ProgramGraduate College