Paul Hindemith's use of the trumpet in the Kammermusik works

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Wiley, Norman Keith
Scagnoli, Joseph R.
Issue Date
Thesis (D.A.)
School of Music
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This study investigates the nature and extent of Paul Hindemith's use of the trumpet or cornet in the seven works which comprise the Kammermusiken. The trumpet or cornet is assessed on the basis of technical and musical criteria with regard for its functional responsibilities within the context of each work. Specific evaluative criteria include pitch range, ensemble placement, melodic motion, articulation, rhythmic character, dynamic range, and special effects. Functional responsibilities are generally identified as either thematic or supportive on the basis of an examination of the musical setting in which the trumpet or cornet is found. Thematic roles are further distinguished, where appropriate, as either primary or secondary. Supportive responsibilities are identified as either harmonic, harmonic and rhythmic, or harmonic and structural.Each of the seven works is addressed in a separate chapter. General information concerning instrumentation, expressive character, and specific comment regarding unique stylistic features is provided. A technical and musical assessment of the utilization of the trumpet or cornet is included. Performance demands and interpretative concerns are addressed, as well. A summary of the trumpet's or cornet's use in the work concludes each chapter while a comprehensive comparison of its use in all seven compositions is provided in the final chapter. Representative musical excerpts from the score are provided in separate appendixes.The trumpet serves almost equally in thematic and supportive roles and is generally called upon to perform in a predominantly marked or martial manner. While all passages are well within the normal performance capabilities of the professional or advanced collegiate player, an assured technical facility is required in order to accommodate the variety of intervallic combinations and contrasting melodic motion which typifies Hindemith's harmonic language.