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Form, Genre, and Style in the Eighteenth-Century Rondo

Joel Galand
Music Theory Spectrum
Vol. 17, No. 1 (Spring, 1995), pp. 27-52
Published by: on behalf of the Society for Music Theory
DOI: 10.2307/745763
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/745763
Page Count: 26
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Form, Genre, and Style in the Eighteenth-Century Rondo
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Abstract

In order to exemplify a rapprochement between analytical theory and historical inquiry, Schenkerian concepts of form are applied to a style-historical investigation of the eighteenth-century rondo. Schenker himself, despite his innovations, too often follows traditional nineteenth-century Formenlehre in narrowly equating an individual genre with a particular formal technique, even if historically the one did not necessarily imply the other. The interrelationship of form and genre is too complex to be ascribed to a shared middle-ground paradigm. Nevertheless, Schenkerian theory allows a clearer picture to emerge of the ways in which composers fused rondo and ritornello characteristics with binary variants of sonata form. Formal procedures previously considered sui generis are actually fairly common eighteenth-century treatments of the finale, characteristic of composers like Vanhal and Steffan as well as Mozart.

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