Study Abroad and Exchanges



MUS3114 : Case Studies in Classical Performance Practice (L6) (Inactive)

Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


This module aims to address issues of style, interpretation and performance practice in a wide range of classical repertoire from c.1600 to the present, essentially looking at the process of getting ‘from score to sound’ (to borrow the title of an article by the pianist and scholar, Peter Hill). This will be of particular interest and practical benefit to classical performers – instrumentalists, singers, conductors – since it will address directly some key questions of historical and contemporary performance practice, and encourage students to develop a more critical and independent approach to the interpretation of classical repertoire. By making synergies with different areas of the curriculum, including analysis, history, composition and performance, this module aims to provide the means of sharpening and enriching the student’s stylistic awareness and contextual knowledge of the repertoire they perform.

Outline Of Syllabus

Themes to be covered will include the following (or similar, depending on the current research interests of contributing staff):
• Understanding editions and editorial conventions
• Historical treatises on performance (e.g. CPE Bach, Quantz, L.Mozart)
• Possibilities and limitations of performance on original instruments
• Historical performance practice and the human voice
• Evidence of changing performance styles through early recordings
• Analysis and performance
• Improvisation in classical performance
• New forms of notation and contemporary practices

Teaching is via a combination of lectures, which introduce key questions, concepts, and source materials appropriate to each case study, and follow up seminars in which students apply similar methodologies to appropriate repertoire of their own choice.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture82:0016:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching82:0016:00Seminars
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery22:004:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1164:00164:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures introduce key questions, concepts, methodologies, in relation to each case study; seminars provide students with an opportunity to engage critically with these issues in relation to repertoire appropriate to their own practice (instrument/voice).

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1A1004000 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

For each of the 8 topic areas a short assignment will be set related to the content of the lecture & seminar, in which the student is asked to consider the questions raised in relation to repertoire appropriate to their own instrument / voice. Whereas students at Level 5 choose to complete any 4 of these assignments for submission in their summative portfolio, at Level 6 students will be expected to synthesise materials across the various topic areas into a single extended piece of writing.

Reading Lists