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Stravinsky… the serial years.

stravinsky_wide-a8e2a918b98a52c2692f61a7cd4d5f9277e44364-s6-c30Igor Stravinsky is SCMT’s Composer/Musician of the Month, in this blog we take a look at the later years of his composing career.

Stravinsky started his career writing ballet scores and then moved forward to a neoclassical period, but from the 1950s his writing took a different turn. He started to use serial techniques and moved into the serial genre.

Serial music is a genre of music that uses a pattern or series that is repeated over and over again, it can be notes, dynamics, articulation, rhythms and much more.

The technique that Stravinsky is most commonly associated with is dodecaphony or twelve-tone technique. It uses the 12 notes of the chromatic scale in a tone row (specific order of notes) and repeats them over and over again in the same order.

His works at this time included:

Agon – One of Stravinsky’s first experiments with serial techniques.

Canticum Sacrum – A composition based on a tone row.

Threni – Contains the twelve-tone technique

The Flood – Using text from biblical texts and theatrical plays.