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Postgraduate Music 2021-2022

MU5007: RENAISSANCE COUNTERPOINT

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

This course is intended both for those interested in Renaissance music and for composition students who wish to explore the many possibilities of musical invention within a very controlled compositional environment. To acquire the basic tools of Renaissance composition, students progress through counterpoint exercises in two and three voices. Through more advanced exercises in motivic placement, canon, invertible counterpoint, and the fundamentals of improvised counterpoint, students learn to structure a complete composition, culminating in a motet for three voices. In addition, works are studied through analysis of compositions.

MU5008: VOCALSTRATION

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

This course is designed to encourage composers and performers to engage with the ‘orchestrational’ aspects of composing for choir, with particular emphasis upon each section of the choir, its characteristics, compass and blend, and how each part relates to the whole; creating chords that utilise the choir fully, blending choral chords, voice-leading, structuring choral music; the joys and problems when composing for choir with accompaniment (piano, organ & orchestra) and arranging for the voice.

MU5015: CURRENT ISSUES IN MUSIC EDUCATION

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

In this course students will have an opportunity to engage with some current issues and practical challenges concerning music education. It will examine a variety of topical and sometimes contentious issues and practical challenges concerning, for example, equality, diversity and inclusion in music, the role and status of instrumental music and curriculum planning.

MU5016: CONTEMPORARY ISSUES IN AESTHETICS

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

This course will introduce students to the work of key contemporary texts in aesthetics relating to music and the other arts. Texts will be studied, discussed and related to one another. While selected texts will vary from year to year, readings will be taken from writers such as Adorno, Badiou, Benjamin, Barthes, Bloch, Boulez, Deleuze (and Guattari), Dahlhaus, Derrida, Dufrenne, Eco, Gadamer, Habermas, Heidegger, Husserl, Jameson, Jencks, Lachenmann, Lyotard, Nancy, Nietzsche, Rancière, Rihm, Sartre, Schoenberg, Serres, Sloterdijk, Spivak, Stockhausen, Vattimo, Wittgenstein, Zizek.

Examples of issues and questions that may be covered include the nature of modernity, post-modernity more idiosyncratic variable theorisations of recent aesthetic history; the nature and purpose of the contemporary artwork; the beautiful and the sublime; relationships between the arts; the materiality of contemporary art forms; musique informelle.

MU5017: MUSICKING

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

This course is based around Christopher Small’s book Musicking. Small proposes that ‘Music is not a thing at all but an activity, something that people do.’ From this basis the course will develop a detailed knowledge and understanding of the various ways in which Community Musicians engage with a broad range of community settings and participants in the activity of musicking. The course will look critically at selected Community Music case studies from the UK, Europe and the USA exploring varying pedagogical underpinnings for project design, initiation, delivery and evaluation.

MU501Q: AUDIENCE DEVELOPMENT AND ENGAGEMENT THROUGH COMMUNITY MUSIC

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

This course looks specifically at the issues of Audience Development and Engagement in Community Settings, giving students the opportunity to work as a cohort to design, negotiate, implement and evaluate a Community Performance and/or Workshop based on a set stimulus. 

This course covers aspects of business and entrepreneurship alongside the development of Community Music leadership skills and qualities. 

This course is delivered in collaboration with the University of Aberdeen Museums and Special Collections team. 

MU5022: RESEARCH PRACTICES

30 credits

Level 5

First Sub Session

This course provides students with an opportunity to reflect on and develop their own research practices. Engaging with topics and methods relevant to all six of the MMus study paths (community music, composition, music education, musicology, performance, and sonic arts) the course will encourage students to engage with both novel and well-established approaches to music studies.

MU50EP: EXTENDED PROJECT

120 credits

Level 5

Full Year

This course enables students to be creative in developing their own independent and individual ideas through an extended research project in musicology and/or composition and/or performance resulting in a substantial piece of original work. They will acquire a range of skills, techniques and understanding enabling them to become effective researchers. The project outcome will be a dissertation and/or portfolio of compositions and/or a performance recital demonstrating original research. The exact nature of the project is the result of negotiation between supervisor (or supervisory team) and student, subject to the approval of the programme coordinator. 

MU5503: WORDS AND MUSIC

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

This course aims to explore the link between words and music and how composers set various texts through many and varied genres, including eastern music, western music and popular music, and nonsense texts. Intended primarily for composers, this course would also be of interest to singers, conductors and musicologists with an interest in text-setting. Word-painting, structural design and poetic understanding will all be explored. 

MU5515: ENHANCED PRACTICE IN MUSIC LEARNING AND TEACHING

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

This course provides opportunities for students to explore and critically assess a number of approaches to musical learning and the educational theories that underpin them. Participants will evaluate and apply these to their own practice settings, critically discussing issues and debates that may arise from the application of theory to practice. Students will carry out a comparative study set in their own music education context, applying theory to practice.

MU551N: GLOBAL MUSICAL MODERNISM

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

From its inception in the late 19th/early 20th century, Western musical modernity has contained within itself elements of geographically diverse cultures. Paying close attention to decisive political shifts and the facts of colonialism, post-colonialism and decolonialism, students will study a range of modern music showing the importance of various Asian, African and Latin American musics for Western musical modernity and how the traditions and practices of Western music have been embraced in turn in innovative ways in Asia, Africa and Latin America. 

MU5523: RESEARCH COMMUNICATION

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

This course provides students with an applied understanding of research communication skills relevant to all six study paths (community music, composition, music education, musicology, performance, and sonic arts).  Students will engage directly with current issues in music research, experiencing and critiquing different methods of written, recorded, and oral communication. The course is structured around the departmental Music Research Seminars, but students are also expected to attend other seminar and/or events relevant to their own research practice.

MU5524: EXTENDED PROJECT

60 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

This course enables students to be creative in developing their own independent and individual ideas through an extended research project in any one, or a combination of, the six MMus study paths (community music, composition, music education, musicology, performance, and sonic arts). Students will acquire a range of skills, techniques and understanding enabling them to become effective researchers in their chosen area(s). The exact nature of the project is the result of negotiation between supervisor (or supervisory team) and student, subject to the approval of the programme coordinator.  

MU5526: EQUALITY, EQUITY AND SOCIAL JUSTICE THROUGH MUSIC

30 credits

Level 5

Second Sub Session

This course will empower students to engage proactively with the complex social and political concepts, theories and perspectives around equality, equity and social justice. 

 The first part of the course will develop a knowledge and understanding of the range of terminology, concepts, theories, and perspectives connected with this area of study, using the 2010 Equality Act as an overarching framework. This will be undertaken through the study of relevant academic literature and participatory activities.  

The second part of the course will demonstrate how these concepts, theories and perspectives can be applied to the student’s understanding of their individual musical practice(s).  

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