BYRNES, Jonathan Lawrence

PhD University of Sydney 2016 Pages: 111

The devil’s horn and the music of the brothel approaching adaptation and performance of tango for the classical saxophonist

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The purpose of this thesis is to establish a concise and well-considered approach to the performance of tango music by a classical saxophonist. It explores the significance of adaptation to a saxophonist by investigating the integral role it has had on the performance, promotion and education throughout the instrument’s history. To this end, this thesis also traces the tradition of adaptation in Western Classical music. When approaching the adaptation of tango it is important to recognise the differences in the music’s culture. We are ultimately changing the context of the music by arranging it for another instrument. Therefore, a fervent discussion of the issues surrounding the idea of schizophonic mimesis are explored in an effort to maintain due respect for the original composition while bringing something new to it. The impact of schizophonic mimesis on our audience’s expectations, the stylisation of music, and the respect to the tradition of the other culture are discussed, and establish the need for a well informed and stylistic approach. To help address the various issues, this thesis gives a historical account of, what we will refer to as the tango’s ‘tangible’ and ‘intangible’ stylistic traits, and will propose a new approach to saxophone tango performance through a series of established and novel techniques.

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