Robert Linehan, The Songs of Frank Bridge: Striking at the Roots of Tonality (Other, Queen’s University Belfast, 2013)

These details defined Mon Jan 5 20:12:22 2015  edit
 Author:  Linehan, Robert 
 Title:  The Songs of Frank Bridge: Striking at the Roots of Tonality 
 Degree, institution:  Other, Queen’s University Belfast 
 Status, year:  accepted, 2013 (September 2013) 
 Volumes, pp.:  1 (41pp) 
 Supervisor(s):  Pádhraid Ó Cuinneagáin 
 Repository:  DIT Conservatory of Music & Drama Library 
 General specialism:  Musicology: Performance Studies 
 Content, key terms: 

This MMus dissertation explores the harmonic language that Frank Bridge (1879-1941) developed in his songs between 1905 and 1925. Bridge's innovations are explored in the context of the revival and elevation of English Art song to a second Golden Age in the early years of the twentieth century.

Musicologists have regarded Bridge's songs as little more than fashionable parlour songs with no innovative feastures worthy of analysis. This thesis aims to evaluate how far Bridge deliberately moved beyond the use of core Romantic harmonic lanuage in his song output and to dispute the contention that his songs should be regarded as salon pieces of little critical value and could be overlooked by musicologists. A change of compositional direction, embracing a twelve-tone harmonic language, brought Bridge into conflict with the English public who were resistent to such advances in harmonic sound and, as a result even today Bridge's contribution to the revival of the English Art Song has arguably been neglected and not been evaulated in the context of his overall contribution to the art of song-writing.

This thesis will attempt to re-appraise his contribution to the genre and explain why his songs have been undervalued in the history of English Art Song.