An examination of folk-music-inspired composition in Canada through an analysis of settings of "Dans tous les cantons"

Stepanek, Heidi J. (2000) An examination of folk-music-inspired composition in Canada through an analysis of settings of "Dans tous les cantons". Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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This thesis examines the ways in which Canadian composers have utilized folk music. This practice can be traced back to the emergence of widespread interest among the elite classes in vernacular art and culture in Europe and figures most prominently in trends of romantic nationalism. Through a detailed analysis of seven settings of the French Canadian folksong "Dans tous les cantons," I seek to discover answers to three main questions: What reasons do composers give for the utilization of folk materials? What source musics have they used in this process? How have they musically manipulated these materials? -- The first chapter examines the European roots of the techniques of utilizing folk music in "art" music composition. The second chapter outlines the motivations and attitudes which led to the development of the use of folksong in art music composition in Canada. The third chapter deals with the specific Canadian utilizations of folksong in art music composition. The final two chapters of the thesis concentrate on the French-Canadian folksong "Dans tous les cantons" and the detailed analysis of seven settings of it. In chronological order, these are: Sir Ernest MacMillan's "Dans tous les cantons=In all the Country Round" (1928), Alfred Whitehead's "In all the Country Round" (1939), Maurice Dela's "Dans tous les cantons!" (1949), Violet Archer's "Music Everywhere=Dans tous les cantons" (1953), Richard Johnson's "Dans tous les cantons" (1964), Morris Surdin's "Dans tous les cantons" (1970), and Howard Cable's "Dans tous les cantons" (1979). -- In the fourth chapter, the social and cultural dimensions of the seven composers are examined. Contextual biographies are given for each, exploring their philosophies on the use of this musical practice. The fifth chapter examines the music itself and how the composers have manipulated the original song. Issues pertaining to the differences in these various instrumental and vocal settings are discussed in detail.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 9028
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 262-278.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Folklore
Date: 2000
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Folk music--Canada; Composition (Music); Dans tous les cantons (Folk song)

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