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music and dance

Musicology 470/507

Fall 1999

Professor Amy K. Stillman

School of Music

University of Michigan

602 Burton Memorial Tower

Ann Arbor MI 48109


This course will explore various ways in which music sound and dance movements structure each other, both in performance and in processes of creation / composition. The course will emphasize aural and visual analysis, and will include consideration of the role of cultural context in creating and presenting dance performance. The aim is to develop multi-disciplinary analytical skills in approaching both audio and visual dimensions in the performing arts. Prior knowledge of either music or dance is not prerequisite, nor is the ability to read music or movement notation.

We will begin by considering various methodologies for analyzing music and movement, and issues in viewing moving images of dance. Thereafter, the course is organized into a series of case studies on specific dance traditions. Those selected for study illustrate various strategies of participation, ranging from recreational social dance and participatory ritual to staged theatrical art dance.

For each unit, there will be assigned readings, listenings, and videotape viewings. Required readings have been collected into a Coursepak that will be available at Accucopy on Williams St. after next Tuesday (Sept. 14). Listening and videotape assignments will be available at the Music Library on North Campus.

A. Undergraduates enrolled in Musicology 470 must complete:  
1. Four short essays (500-750 words) on each of the case studies: 15% each
2. A critique of a live performance (500-750 words):  15%
3. Final essay examination on a video excerpt:  25%
B. Graduate students enrolled in Musicology 507 must complete:  
1. Four short essays on each of the case studies: 10%
2. A critique of a live performance (500-750 words): 10%
3. A research paper of 10-15 pages 25%
4. Final essay examination on a video excerpt: 25%


Policy Note: All requirements must be completed satisfactorily in order to pass the course.

Course Requirements

1. There will be a brief essay assignment (500-750 words /2-3 pages) for each of the major case studies we will cover. The essay topic will be assigned, and you will have at least one week to complete each of the assignments.

2. For this course, everyone is required to attend the Univ. Musical Society presentation of Ballet Folklorico de Mexico on October 5-6 in Hill Auditorium. A special free pre-concert lecture, on traditional Mexican musics, will be held on Tuesday Oct. 5 in Michigan League, which you are also strongly recommended to attend, because some of the points covered are likely to be relevant to completing the critique of the concert. I urge you to get your ticket as soon as possible, and even to take advantage of the upcoming student ticket rush. Do not wait until the evening of the concert to buy tickets at the door, in case of a sellout. If for any reason you are unable to attend this concert, see me as soon as possible.

3. Final essay examination: you will demonstrate your newly-acquired range of analytical skills by commenting on an "unfamiliar" videotape example

Graduate Students Research Paper

This paper is a research exercise. Using a case study of your choice, you are to introduce your case study, and discuss problems in analyzing the music and dance. You can choose either a major dance production (e.g., "Swan Lake"), or a world dance tradition (e.g., bharata natyam). To facilitate orderly completion of this requirement, it is broken down into the following components:

1. individual appointments to discuss topics during week of Oct. 5

2. one-page list of resources relevant to your topic due Oct. 14

3. first draft (500-750 words) of introduction of your topic due Nov. 11

4. first draft (500-750 words) of analysis due Nov. 30

5. final term paper due Dec. 7


Office: Rm. 602, Burton Memorial Tower



Office hours: Tuesdays, 2:30-4:00pm, and by appointment

Date Topic Reading Listening Video Assignment
9/9 Introduction        
9/14 Cultural conventions        
9/16 Music & movement analysis Rowell, Kaeppler, Foster, Kaeppler      
9/21 Choreography        
9/23 Music composition        
9/28 Staged Folklore Urtula, Kasilag, TBA TBA Folklorico  
9/30 Staged Folklore         
10/5 Viewing moving images Goodwin, Buckland   Madonna, Immaculate Collection  
  Oct. 5-6 Ballet Folklorico de Mexico; pre-concert lecture on Oct. 5
10/7 Viewing moving images Lokyer      
10/12 Ritual: Australian aboriginal dance Rappaport, Clunies Ross and Wild Djambidj Rom Concert critique due
10/14 Ritual        
10/19 Ritual Marrett and Page Wangga Waiting for Harry  
10/21 Ritual        
10/26 Recreational Dance: square dancing McNeill, Hast TBA New England Dances Essay 2 due
10/28 Recreational Dance Spalding & Woodside, Dart      
11/2 Improvisatory Dance: Tahitian 'ori Stillman, Moulin Tahitian pehe Ori  
11/4 Improvisatory Dance       Essay 3 due
11/9 Theatrical art dance: "Les Noces" Hastrup Russian wedding songs Paris Dances Diaghilev  
11/11 Les Noces Reeder and Comegno     Essay 4 due
11/16 Les Noces Mazo      
11/18 Les Noces        
11/23 Les Noces        
12/2 Cruces de Fuego       Essay 5 due
12/7 Cruces de Fuego        
12/9 Conclusions        

Final examination: Monday Dec. 20, 1:30-3:30pm

NB. Schedule is subject to change. At this point, count on it.



Thinking about Music

1. Lewis Rowell, "Meditations on a Menuet," Ch. 2 of Thinking About Music: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Music" (Amherst: Univ. of Massachussetts Press, 1983), 9-18. Thinking about Dance 2. Adrienne Kaeppler. "Dance." In Folklore, Cultural Performances, and Popular Entertainments, ed. Richard Bauman (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992), 196-203.

3. Susan Leigh Foster. "Dancing Bodies." In Meaning in Motion: New Cultural Studies of Dance, ed. Jane C. Desmond (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1997), 235-57.

4. Adrienne Kaeppler, "Method and Theory of Analyzing Tongan Dance." Ethnomusicology 16 (1972), 173-217.

Video examples used in class

a) brolga (Australian aboriginal) dance. JVC Video Anthology, vol. 29 no. 28.

b) legong (Balinese) dance. JVC Video Anthology. vol. 9, no. 4.

c) ballet: pas de deux from "Theme and Variations," choreogr. Balanchine (1947), music by Tchaikovsky.
Viewing Moving Images of Dance 5. Andrew Goodwin, " The Structure of Music Video: Rethinking Narrative Analysis," Ch. 4 of Dancing in the Distraction Factory: Music Television and Popular Culture (Minneapolis: Univ. of Minnesota Press, 1992), 72-97.

6. Theresa Jill Buckland with Elizabeth Stewart. "Dance and Music Video." In Parallel Lines: Media Representations of Dance, ed. Stephanie Jordan and Dave Allen (London: John Libbey, 1993), 51-79.

7. Bob Lokyer, "Stage Dance on Television." In Parallel Lines: Media Representations of Dance, ed. Stephanie Jordan and Dave Allen (London: John Libbey, 1993), 127-144.

optional reading Virginia Loring Brooks. "Conventions in the Documentary Recording of Dance: Research Needs." Dance Research Journal 19/2 (Winter 1987-88), 15-26. Video viewing

Madonna, Immaculate Collection

Michael Jackson, Thriller


8. Lucrecia R. Urtula. "Keeping in Step with Yesterday: The Choreography." In Bayanihan (Manila: Bayanihan Folk Arts Center, 1987), 117-124.

9. Lucrecia R. Kasilag. "The Sounds of Bayanihan: Bandurias, Nose Flutes, Dabakans." In Bayanihan (Manila: Bayanihan Folk Arts Center, 1987), 125-129.

Video viewing


Excerpt from Bayanihan folkloric suite. JVC Video Anthology, vol. 8 no. 16.

Case Study: Ballet Folklorico de Mexico

Video viewing

Folklorico: The magic, eternal and passionate face of Mexico. Ballet Folklorico de Mexico. Million Dollar Video Corp., MEP 003, 1989. II. RITUAL 11. Roy A. Rappaport. "Ritual." In Folklore, Cultural Performances, and Popular Entertainments, ed. Richard Bauman (New York: Oxford University Press, 1992), 249-260. Case Study: Australian Aboriginal Traditions--Rom 12. Margaret Clunies Ross and Stephen A. Wild. "Formal Performance: The Relations of Tune, Text and Dance in Arnhem Land Clan Songs." Ethnomusicology 28 (1984), 209-235.

13. Allen Marrett and JoAnne Page. "Interrelationships between Music and Dance in a Wangga from Northwest Australia." In The Essence of Singing and the Substance of Song: Recent Responses to the Aboriginal Performing Arts and Other Essays in Honour of Catherine Ellis (Sydney: University of Sydney, 1995), 27-38.

optional reading Margaret Clunies Ross. "The Aesthetics and Politics of an Arnhem Land Ritual" [commentary on filming of Waiting for Harry] The Drama Review 33/4 (T 124) (1989), 107-127. Allen Marrett. "Traditional Australian Music: Northern Australia (Arnhem Land)." In The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music and Dance.

JoAnne Page. "Traditional Australian Dance: Wangga of Northwest Australia." In The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music and Dance.


Djambidj: An Aboriginal Song Series from Northern Australia. Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies, cassette AIAS/16. Companion book by Margaret Clunies Ross and Stephen A. Wild, 1988.

Goyulan: The Morning Star. Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies, cassette. Companion book by Margaret Clunies Ross and Johnny Mundrugmundrug, 1988.

Bunggridj-bunggridg: Wangga Songs by Alan Maralung, Northern Australia. International Institute for Traditional Music, Traditional Music of the World 4. Smithsonian Folkways SF 40430, 1993.

Video viewing

The Rom Ceremony, Canberra, 1995 (excerpts). approx. 30 min.

Waiting for Harry. Directed by Kim McKenzie. Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies, 1981. 57 min. Australian Aboriginal dances. JVC Video Anthology, vol. 29, no. 21-28.


14. William H. McNeill. "Muscular Bonding," Ch. 1 of Keeping Together in Time: Dance and Drill in Human History (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1995), 1-11. Case Study: Anglo-American Square Dance 15. Dorothea Hast. "Performance, Transformation, and Community: Contra Dance in New England." Dance Research Journal 21/1 (Spring 1993), 21-32.

16. Susan Eike Spalding and Jane Harris Woodside. "'You Have to Watch Your People': Calling Old-Time Appalachian Square Dance. An Interview with Veronia Miller." In Communities in Motion: Dance, Community, and Tradition in America's Southeast and Beyond, ed. Susan Eike Spalding and Jane Harris Woodside (Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1995), 31-4.

17. Mary McNab Dart. Ch. 4, "The Composing of Contra Dances," in Contra Dance Choreography: A Reflection of Social Change (New York: Garland, 1995), 65-91.

Listening: TBA

Video viewing

New England Dances. Produced and directed by John M. Bishop. Multicultural Media MCM1002, 1995. 29 min.

Case study: Tahitian 'ori

18. Stillman, Amy K. "The Society Islands." manuscript for revised edition of New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians.

19. Moulin, Jane F. "East Polynesia: Society Islands, Dance." The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music. Vol. 9: Australia and the Pacific Islands (1998), 865-869, 873-879.


Tahitian Drums & Dances, performed by Toti's Tahitians (HanaOla HOCD 19000), 1994

Heiva i Tahiti (EUCD 1238), 1992

Video viewing

Ori: The Dance of Tahiti. Mahea Uchiyama Center for International Dance. [1998] Excerpts from Heiva i Tahiti. 1989.

Excerpts from Tahiti Fete of San Jose, 1995, 1998.


20. Kirsten Hastrup. "Theatre as a Site of Passage: Some reflections on the Magic of Acting." In Ritual, Performance, Media, ed. Felicia Hughes-Freeland (London and New York: Routledge, 1998), 29-45. Case study: "Les Noces"; music by Stravinsky, choreogr. by Nijinska 21. Roberta Reeder and Arthur Comegno, "Stravinsky's Les Noces." Dance Research Journal 18/2 (Winter 1986-87), 31-61.

22. Margarita Mazo, "Stravinsky's Les Noces and the Russian Village Wedding Ritual." Journal of the American Musicological Society 43 (1990), 99-142.

Listening Igor Stravinsky, "Les Noces" (1917 and 1923 versions). Peter Eotvos, conductor. Hungaroton HCD 12989, n.d.

Les Noces: ("The Wedding") and Russian Village Wedding Songs (Nonesuch 9 79335-2), 1994.

Video viewing

"Les Noces," performed by Paris Opera Ballet, choreogr. Bronislava Nijinska. Paris Dances Diaghilev. Paris Opera Ballet. Elektra Nonesuch 40159-6, 1990.

Upload: 12/09/99

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