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PHILHARMONICA. International Music Journal

Dmitri Shostakovich's artistic world view: from assembling harmony to dodecaphonic rows

Savvina Lyudmila Vladimirovna

Doctor of Art History

Professor at the Department of Theory and History of Music, Vice-Rector for Research of Astrakhan State Conservatoire

414004, Russia, Astrakhanskaya oblast', g. Astrakhan', ul. V. Barsovoi, 12, k. 1, kv. 45




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One of the sources of reflection of Shostakovich’s world view of the early period was futurism, which not only embraced all forms of art, but also defined the manner of thinking and the behavioral pattern. Probably, that was futurism where Shostakovich found the proof for his ideas and the possibility to express the atmosphere of the developments of that time, full of manifestations, rallies and demonstrations. Like an artist working with a model, the composer doesn’t copy the object, but somewhat creates a new reality, reproducing it off the top of his head, via imagination. An endless word association game resembles a laboratory of “sound metaphors”, in which, looking for a new substance, parts of an accord first decompose, and then compose themselves again, creating the image of the transformed space - discrete and fragmented, like in the pictures built according to the laws of Cubism. Unlike the variations of the accords of the early compositions, where everything gleams and multiplies, in the latest compositions, “shots” slow down and halt. Close-up views prevail over general views, and, though assemblability doesn’t disappear, it becomes smoother, in contrast with abrupt consolidation of various elements. The dodecaphonic theme itself gains the meaning of a macro-theme consisting of micro-themes. The specificity of Shostakovich’s manner to assemble sounds is directly dependent on the domination of particular types of cultural codes the composer orients towards. The shift of the cultural and artistic model of cinematography towards coding serial music indicates the transition from synthetic creativity, externally oriented, to the internally oriented culture focusing on the music realia as such. The transition from one artistic model to another is connected with the strengthening of semiotic traits of a music text.

Keywords: editing combinatorics, the semantics of harmony, the semantic field of melody, Shostakovich, modern music, semantica, music art, transcoding, the original object,, the replacement object
This article written in Russian. You can find full text of article in Russian here .

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