"Late Medieval Music Theory and Analysis"
Investigations of medieval music repertories often reveal a tension between the elementary instructions provided by contemporary treatises, which are intended for beginners, and the complexities of surviving compositions. This workshop focuses on the analysis of the so-called "isorhythmic" motets of the French ars nova, c. 1320–50. While the treatise De modo componendi tenores motetorum of Egidius de Murino would seem to provide a coherent set of instructions, its author warns that they are intended for children. And the contemporary terms “color” and “talea,” which have been used to analyze melodic and rhythmic repetition, respectively, are defined and used variously in fourteenth-century treatises. Workshop participants will acquire tools for the analysis of late-medieval repertoire drawn from contemporary theoretical sources as well as from observation of some parameters of motet construction not accounted for by the treatises. They will also have a chance to experiment with composition according to historical principles.