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date: 02 June 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explores different medieval techniques of organizing rhythmic parameters to illuminate the ancestry of many purportedly novel techniques popularized in later twentieth-century works. Three categories of structural medievalism—evocation, adaptation, and assimilation—delineate the types of organizing parameters used by composers separated in time by six centuries. The process of defining this far-reaching ancestry unfolds in the context of a broad range of contemporary repertory that is often distinct in sound from its medieval antecedents but exhibits tangible conceptual connections. Further interest lies in the dichotomy between the apparent complexity of notation in the works of the Ars subtilior, similar to that found in many contemporary scores, and a rather simpler notion of aiming to achieve emancipated polyphonic lines that can readily stand in contrast and juxtaposition to one another when rhythmically distinct.

Keywords: notation, Ars subtilior, György Ligeti, Elliott Carter, Peter Maxwell Davies, Senleches, Angelorum Psalat, modern proportion, Chantilly Codex

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