The viola concerto of Ahmed Adnan Saygun : compositional elements and performance perspectives

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Gizem Yücel (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Scott Rawls

Abstract: Ahmed Adnan Saygun (1907-1991) is one of the most important Turkish composers. He is also celebrated as an influential teacher and a dedicated ethnomusicologist. His compositional output spans a great variety of genres from symphonies to arrangements of Turkish folk songs to solo partitas and concertos. His complex and brilliant orchestrations have won him a worldwide reputation, and the Viola Concerto substantiates this claim. Saygun incorporates both western neoclassical compositional techniques and Turkish folk elements throughout this concerto. The viola concerto, written in 1977, was recorded two times, in 1989 and 2006. While his music has been analyzed and interpreted by both theorists and musicologists, this particular work has never been formally researched. The purpose of this study is to analyze the form and structure of each movement of the concerto through a discussion of the elements Saygun uses. This study will provide brief historical background on western classical music in Turkey, the life of the composer, and his compositional style in order to better understand Saygun as a composer and his viola concerto in particular. Themes and folk elements will be identified and analyzed in order to better understand the connection between movements. In this study, the integrated rhythmic, melodic, structural and instrumental elements of Turkish folk tradition will be highlighted. Through this research, I endeavor to introduce the piece to a new audience as well as to potential performers.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2013
Turkish composers, Ethnomusicologist, Viola
Saygun, Ahmed Adnan. $t Concertos, $m viola, orchestra, $n op. 59
Composers $z Turkey
Music $z Turkey $y 20th century $x Analysis, appreciation

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