UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Using single-line instruments as a means of reinforcing concepts of harmony : a discussion of exercises for use in individual and group settings Fay, Margaret Pickering


The purpose of this thesis is to discuss and present harmony-based exercises that can be performed on single-line instruments. My premise is that, while keyboard harmony exercises are widely available, few equivalent resources exist for performance on single-line instruments. Exercises of increasing complexity are presented over the course of three chapters. Chapter 2, “Fundamental Exercises in Chord Awareness,” presents a wide range of exercises that involve arpeggiating chords in different inversions and positions, using a variety of formats (exercise types), all of which are meant to provide contexts that will sharpen memory for these chords. All exercises in this chapter are designed for solo performance. Chapters 3 and 4 present various means of reproducing harmonic successions on single-line instruments, used singly and in groups of two or more. Chapter 3, “Methods of Playing Simple Harmonic Progressions,” discusses some of the ways in which harmonic progressions can be reproduced without requiring that the instruments involved by able to reliably produce simultaneous tones. Chapter 4, “Melodic/Bass-Line Interaction,” uses schemata described in Robert Gjerdingen’s book Music in the Galant Style, (2007), as a basis for deriving exercises that conceive of harmony as the result of interaction between two melodic lines (soprano and bass). The thesis concludes with a brief discussion of sessions in which many of these exercises were tested on and discussed with university-level music students.

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