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Oct. 17th, 2005 | 03:08 am
posted by: captaincanada in fact_snacks

I feel guilty for taking some of this from a podcast, but I felt it was worth sharing, and hey, paraphrasing is fun. :)

October 15th marked the 100th anniversary of Claude Debussy's "La Mer" (The Sea), a piece that was said to have been the groundwork for the post-Romantic era of music (also called Impressionism), based largely in France. Originally a work that baffled contemporaries and audiences alike, Debussy's work suggested new ways of looking at tone and structure, and, like the ocean, shifts between chaos and tranquility almost arbitrarily. It seems to have no real structure; some critics of today still don't quite know what to make of it. [more on the piece if you're interested]

While Debussy's French contemporaries (notably Maurice Ravel) continued to explore the emotional and experimental themes of Impressionism, other -isms began to arise as well. While Stravinsky's primitivism still had some basis in tonality, serialism rejected tonality and the Classical-Romantic tradition completely, believing that those periods had produced all that they could. Eventually, this lead the way to the birth of modernism, the end of romanticism, and a lot of very silly movie soundtracks.

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