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Kudashova V.

Expressive possibilities of micro-chromatics in violin compositions of the second half of the 20th century

In the musical art of the second half of the 20th century, contemporary composers show an increased interest in micro-chromatics as a unique phenomenon. Composers found it to be one of the most productive ways to reflect the reaction of the individual to the changed picture of the world. Together with the splitting of the sound and penetration into the very core of it, there is an artistic “dissection” of the inner space of the human soul. A new attitude to the sound, which, on the one hand, reveals an amazing similarities with a living cell – part of the whole, and, on the other, with a holistic microcosm, it acquires new timbre, acoustic, and artistic possibilities.

With the expansion of the pitch system, the musical texture is being renewed with the new sound and harmonic combinations. Modern composers widely use micro-chromatics in violin music, because it is facilitated by the acoustics of the instrument, which allow produce a variety of micro-intervals. Micro-chromatics significantly enriches the coloristic, phonic side of the instrument’s sound and contributes to the development of a new sound space. In this regard, the article examines the role of micro-chromatics in works where the violin acts as the leading instrument. The mentioned compositions demonstrate the influence of performing techniques such as sound formation on the expressive capabilities of micro-chromatics. The figurative and artistic embodiment largely depends on the peculiarities of the organization of the micro-chromatic musical fabric. Micro-intoning fills the violin sound with individual meaning, increases the level of expression and recreates a variety of effects. The interaction of micro-chromatics and performing techniques that affect the pitch side of the sound also contributes to the formation of sonoric colors and pushes the boundaries of the spatial and acoustic parameters of the violin sound. The participation of micro-intervals in performing techniques trillare, glissando, vibrato, significantly expands semantic potential, and the arising sound images are endowed with individual semantics. The violin is personified, and its sound image takes on a new dimension.

Key words

micro-chromatics, violin art, performing techniques, composition, phonic properties of sound, color effects, semantics.

For citation

Kudashova V. Expressive possibilities of micro-chromatics in violin compositions of the second half of the 20th century // South-Russian Musical Anthology. 2020. No. 4. Pp. 108–115.