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PHILHARMONICA. International Music Journal

Over-citation in the musical art of the 20th century: forms and functions

Denisov Andrei Vladimirovich

Doctor of Art History

Professor of the Department of History of Foreign Music of the St Petersburg State Conservatory after N.A. Rimsky-Korsakov

190000, Russia, g. Saint Petersburg, ul. Glinki, 2

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The research subject is over-citation - the situation when composers use too much citation in one composition. In such cases there can be dozens of citations, and the composition itself (or some its part/completed fragment) is not very long. The share of the author’s material in this case is often minimal or even equal to zero. It’s obvious that this phenomenon raises some serious questions, including: 1) particular forms of organizing the borrowed content within the composition and its interpreting; 2) prerequisites leading to over-citation. To solve these problems one should use the following methods of analysis: intertextual, compositional, style, structure, semantic, hermeneutic and esthetic analysis. It is obvious that using over-citation aggravates the problem of building a composition as a whole. Therefore, in the compositions with over-citation, composers have to search for the approaches which help to organize it by means of 1) selecting the very material of primary sources of citations and their logic of sequence; 2) varying the share of citations. The reasons determining the use of over-citation form two groups: the specific idea of the piece (e.g., its story); the common prerequisites consisting in the chosen genre, the manner of the author’s thinking and finally - the particular type of the composer’s technique. Particularly, over-citation can be one of the manifestations of absurdism. In this case, the fragments of primary sources and their order are selected randomly and can be replaced with some others, and their characteristics (genre background, intonational specificity) are irrelevant (J. Cage’s “Europeras”, M. Kagel’s “Ludwig van”).

Keywords: composition, semantics, structure, text, polistilistics, collage, hyperquotation, quotation, absurd, dramaturgy
This article written in Russian. You can find full text of article in Russian here .

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