Serial Composition and Atonality: An Introduction to the Music of Schoenberg, Berg, and Webern, Sixth edition, Revised / Edition 6

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Overview


Widely recognized as the definitive work in its field ever since its original publication in 1962, Serial Composition and Atonality remains an unsurpassed introduction to the technical features of what is probably the most revolutionary body of work since the beginnings of polyphony. In the analysis of specific compositions there is first and last of all a concern with the musical surface—an attempt to trace connections and distinctions there before offering any deeper-level constructions, and to offer none where their effects are not obvious on more immediate levels of musical experience. In this sixth edition of the book, George Perle employs the new and more consistent terminology for the identification of transpositional levels of twelve-tone sets that he first proposed in Twelve-Tone Tonality (1977).
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780520074309
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Publication date: 4/11/1991
  • Edition description: REVISED
  • Edition number: 6
  • Pages: 178
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.25 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Meet the Author


George Perle, one of this country's most respected composers, theorists, and critics, is the winner of the Pulitzer Prize in music and a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. His writings on twentieth-century music include The Listening Composer (1990), The Operas of Alban Berg (1980, 1984), and Twelve-Tone Tonality (1977), all available from the University of California Press.
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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 4, 2000

    penetrating and accessible

    As far as I can tell, George Perle's books are the only ones that really come to grips with atonality. Others are either 1) simplistic glosses, 2) pieces of propaganda, or 3) attempts to impress or intimidate the reader (so as to entrench their authors in academia). Having heard one of George Perle's piano sonatas on the radio the other day and once a string quartet of his in concert, I can testify that he is himself a first-rate composer, and isn't it better to read the works of one who has an artistic stake in his subject? (However, for a contrasting point of view, I also recommend--with reservations--'Milton Babbitt: Words about Music', edited by Stephen Dembski. Like George Perle, Milton Babbitt is a prominent serialist composer. As it happens, I'm not a particular fan of his music, and I think his analyses tend miss the substance of the music he analyzes, but he is an influential, articulate, and intelligent exponent worth hearing out.)

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2000

    penetrating and accessible

    As far as I can tell, George Perle's books are the only ones that really come to grips with atonality. Others are either 1) simplistic glosses, 2) pieces of propaganda, or 3) attempts to impress or intimidate the reader (so as to entrench their authors in academia). Having heard one of George Perle's piano sonatas on the radio the other day and once a string quartet of his in concert, I can testify that he is himself a first-rate composer, and isn't it better to read the works of one who has an artistic stake in his subject? For a contrasting point of view, however, I refer you to--with certain reservations--'Milton Babbitt: Words About Music', edited by Stephen Dembski.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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