GSoM: Graduate Student Theses
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- ItemThe Rise of K–pop Boyband BTS in the U.S.: Race, Identity, and Shifting Paradigms(Houghton University, 2022-05-12) Jones, Eden JuliaThis paper considers South Korean K–pop boyband BTS and their notable successes in the United States in recent years as a part of the continuing transnational cultural phenomenon known as the Korean Wave which first began its surge across the globe in the 1990s. Recently, BTS has been making huge splashes on the U.S. popular music scene with regular appearances on U.S. television shows, selling out concert arenas, topping the Billboard charts, and winning numerous prestigious American music awards. Additionally, the group has accomplished several historical feats such as becoming the first South Korean group to perform at the Grammys. Despite these impressive developments the Korean Wave and BTS are two phenomena about which the general U.S. population seems to know relatively little. While most Americans are likely to have heard of the Academy Award–winning, Korean–produced film, Parasite, are probably familiar with or have watched the Korean Netflix series Squid Game and might have even caught glimpses of BTS performances in the media, the greater picture of the Korean Wave and its incredible socio–cultural significance seems to be vastly unknown to a large portion of the population outside of academia, Korean culture, or “K–culture” fandom. This paper seeks to address this lack of familiarity while examining possible causes leading to the fascinating and in many instances unprecedented level of success by a primarily non–English–speaking, non–Western band in a music industry that has long been dominated by Anglo–Western artists. The possible reasons for BTS’s rise in the U.S. popular music scene lead to important considerations about changing perspectives of 21st century Americans within the context of an increasingly digital and globalized world. This paper demonstrates how the success of BTS provides evidence for an American society that is becoming more culturally inclusive, potentially paving the way for a paradigm shift toward a more diverse music industry that has long been dominated by the Anglocentric West.
- ItemMusic Industry in the Post-Pandemic World: A Possible Path Forward(Houghton University, 2021-11-30) Horsth Vieira, Marcio FreireAround the world the COVID-19 pandemic has altered every sector of society, including the music industry. Prompt enforcement of compliance to safety measures and lockdown canceled live music events and recording sessions alike, immediately restricting even the slightest possibility of in-person interaction. As a consequence of that chaotic event, music-making and music consumption shifted overnight to the digital world, namely the virtual modality of interaction or remote interaction. Not only does this paper analyze the changes implemented as soon as chaos broke out, but it also investigates the abilities of humans adapting to an entirely unusual scenario. So far, it seems as though the current status quo will linger indefinitely, due to unexpected variants of the disease that will come up without warning. That implies continuing adaptation. Some of the advantages and disadvantages of the adaptation alluded to are investigated, which will include interviews with a number of music industry experts. Eventually, the sublimity of a new beginning is envisioned by means of a proposal that will allow for inclusion and accessibility in the midst of what seems to be a time of lingering instability. All in all, what I suggest is a model of coexistence of the actual and the virtual modalities of interaction. Whether going back to the old normal or not, such a model aspires to benefit the music industry professionals as well as audiences everywhere, hopefully preparing both for prospective changes in the days to come.
- ItemA Study of Individual and Collective Brazilian Subjectivity through the Makings of the EP (C)ASA(Houghton University, 2021-03-30) Suzano Fernandes Lima, Milena(C)ASA is a subjective expression of the collective and individual Brazilian consciousness into a post-modern social context. It does not give emphasis to exoticism but to the issues, suffering, desire and, of course, consciousness of this group of people. The purpose of this paper is to analyze and describe this subjectivity through the music production process of the EP. In this paper, the music production process is treated as a symbolic speech act. All creational processes will be described and analyzed through a psychoanalytical lens in order to elaborate their symbolism. This paper will document all technical decisions made during the construction of the EP as well as clarify some characteristics of music production. It is important to clarify that the post-production phase – mixing or mastering – will not be covered, but the compositional and recording process only. Finally, the thoughts written on following pages exist to demonstrate how art is functioning in a deeper level of expression in the musical work of (C)ASA. Here, music is not expressing the artist’s self only, but the context in which they live. In other words, it is portraying an individual and collective identity.
- ItemThe Essential Roles of Goals and Motivation in Successful Piano Pedagogy(Houghton University, 2020-04-29) Cross, AlanaThe topic of piano pedagogy is broad, multi-faceted, and intriguing. Scholars agree that the primary concern of piano teachers is fostering an appreciation of music by demonstrating the many roles it can play in students’ lives. An integral part of effective piano teaching is understanding how to motivate students in the initial stages of music learning. Working with students to set and achieve specific goals may be the key to effective motivation. This research seeks to answer the question, “How do experienced piano teachers provide well-rounded, quality instruction while catering to individual goals of students?”
- ItemThe Transformative Art of the Recording Composer(Houghton University, 2018-04-29) Falconer, Chantalle T.Record production is a communicative art form that enhances traditional methods of composition with innovative techniques. In his 1928 essay titled, “The Conquest of Ubiquity,” Paul Valéry noted the contrast between the development of art from the past through the present, emphasizing the evolving nature of art and creativity. Since the fine arts originated, advancements in technology have offered countless modes of crafting and interacting with art. For example, recording originally served the role of preserving live performance occasions but has since flourished into an artistic outlet. Currently, an affordable array of recording technology has made music production accessible to those without traditional training in composition or musicianship, sparking debates about quality. Though elements of traditional music composition are critical for creating high quality art, contemporary production tools can further extend the compositional horizon. Through detailed control of concrete sounds, producers have already discovered new sonic worlds and as a result have established fresh genres. Equipped with skills of critical listening, the recording composer can transcend physical constraints within their musical works through sound manipulation. The recording composer works behind the scenes in the studio and does not seem to fit neatly within the traditional trio of composer, performer, and listener in the music-making process; nevertheless, their influence is significant and needed in contemporary musical life. This paper, with its connected EP project, contribute to the ongoing discussion of musicologists, composers, and producers regarding how sound recording technology is a catalyst able to assist and transform the conception of art.