A synthesis of modern and Brazilian elements: an investigation of Variantes e Toccata Opus 15a by Marlos Nobre

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Pablo da Silva Gusmão (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Andrew Willis

Abstract: Marlos Nobre (b. 1939), one of the most important composers of contemporary music in Brazil, always fought against labels to define his aesthetic orientation. While resisting the idea of being considered a nationalist composer, Nobre admitted that a composer's style is the result of all his past experiences. Having been exposed to a significant amount of street music during his childhood, Nobre inevitably incorporated elements of Brazilian folklore into his early compositions. Nobre studied with Hans Joachim Koellreutter and Camargo Guarnieri, who defended opposite aesthetic views, and Nobre found himself in the middle of a dilemma regarding the use of national elements in a modern serialist language. In 1963, when he went to Buenos Aires to study with Alberto Ginastera, Olivier Messiaen, Riccardo Malipiero and other important composers, Nobre experienced a shift in his musical language which allowed him to successfully achieve a synthesis of contemporary compositional techniques and Brazilian rhythm. The new musical style was inaugurated with a composition for piano and a percussion ensemble of typical Brazilian instruments, called Variações Rítmicas opus 15. In 1997, Nobre arranged the composition for piano solo and titled it Variantes e Toccata opus 15a. This version, which consists mostly of the original piano part alone, represents an important addition to the pianistic repertory and allows a close investigation of Nobre's success in achieving a synthesis between Brazilian rhythms and serial language. After an introductory chapter, Chapter 2 provides an overview of Nobre's life and his five musical styles, focusing particularly on the dilemma that Nobre faced in his early life regarding the combination of modern and national elements. Chapter 3 places Variantes e Toccata opus 15a in a historic context by explaining the origins of opus 15 and the reasons surrounding its arrangement for piano solo. Chapter 4 discusses in more detail the relationship of Nobre with nationalism and describes the typical rhythmic patterns that represent Brazilian music. Chapter 5 consists of an analysis of the aspects of the composition that represent modern compositional techniques and identifies Nobre's manipulation of Brazilian rhythmic elements. Chapter 6 provides a brief conclusion, which summarizes the advances in Nobre's compositional technique that successfully led to the synthesis of Brazilian and modern elements.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2009
Brazilian Music, Brazilian Rhythm, Marlos Nobre, Nationalism, Variations
Nobre, Marlos $d 1939-
Piano music.
Piano music, Arranged.
Music $z Brazil.
Nationalism in music.

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