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The Dynamic Performance: A Performer's Guide to Musical Expression and Interpretation Hardcover – January, 1983

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall (January 1983)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 013221556X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0132215565
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,316,071 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Theseus on July 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This is a landmark book on a tricky subject -- how can performers increase their abilities at musical interpretation and, specifically, create more dynamic and expressive performances? (Additionally: what characteristics of musical expression are common to all musicians: singers, pianists, and instrumentalists?)

Barra tackles this with great specificity using approaches which, according to Menhuin, provide connections between a musician's intuition and his or her reason. The book is full of specific musical examples, organized into chapters such as Phrasing, Rhythm and Meter, and Rubato.

"Patterns of Evolution" is the chapter in which Barra engages with music theory, discussing things such as the shape of melodies, the reoccurrence of motifs, and harmonic development -- all with the goal of arming the musician with information to be used in performance.

As might be expected, the musical examples that Barra calls upon, come out of the Western classical tradition, beginning the the Baroque and ending with early 20th century composers; numerous examples are taken from Beethoven, Mozart, Haydn with a healthy sampling of Romantic composers.

Hardback with dustcover, 181 pp.
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