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Title: How to Write for Steel Pan in the Western Classical Contemporary Context
Authors: Williams, Kendall K.
Advisors: TymockzoDennehy, DmitriDonnacha
Contributors: Music Department
Subjects: Musical composition
Issue Date: 2023
Publisher: Princeton, NJ : Princeton University
Abstract: The composer, the arranger, the visionary, the creator, the enthusiast and the player have all influenced the direction of this dissertation. Written with an immeasurable vision in mind, we discuss the relationship between colloquial steel pan and formal music theory. More specifically, a manual analyzing and summarizing contemporary techniques in steel pan composition and performance for a general audience. With an instrument not having reached its full potential globally, and less than 100 years to date, the steel pan culture has already made its mark through unique competitions that showcase the capability of the instrument through homegrown music resembling familiar musical forms. Being invented in Trinidad and Tobago, the steel pan holds a rich history. Music was used as an outlet for those to steer away from crime, all while indulging in social steel pan contexts that would be later described as musical wars. Those who were educated were typically not associated with the instrument, as negative connotations hovered over the societal benefits. Yet, the evolution of the instrument came through physics, the mere tempering of metal in order to perfect its’ sound. So what drives this dissertation? A child born into a home of two parents playing steel pan, a child born into a culture that cultivated the growth of such an instrument negatively impacted by its history, and a child born in a larger world where steel pan was back then just a blip on a global scale. With the understanding that playing music is an outlet of expression, learning to engulf ones’ mind with the instrument beyond the notes, and observing the temperament of the metal as it reacts to every strike in a different way requires determination. Believing that there will always be more than one way to excel at your passion requires optimism. Knowing that not every bit of information will pre-exist, but might rather be created within the process of everlasting development requires knowledge. Thus “How to Write for Steel Pan in the Classical Contemporary Context”! A growing and living source for information, invention, and experimentation.
Type of Material: Academic dissertations (Ph.D.)
Language: en
Appears in Collections:Music

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