Serial music

serial music (also Serialismus or Serialität, of frz. musique sérielle, 1947 imported of René Leibowitz; English. serial music) is a current of the new music, which developed starting from approximately 1948, and therefore also as contemporary music one designates.Serial music works rather coincidentally, however according to strict rules is composed. The composition technology is based on the attempt to develop if possible all characteristics of the music (like for example clay/tone duration, pitch and volume) on payment or proportion rows. This idea musique pure is above all rational-mathematically, less creative-emotionalaligned.

The Serialismus became historically possible by the “preliminary work” by Arnold beautiful mountain and Anton webers, representatives of the so-called. Second Viennese school, who already arranged pitches and interval structures again according to own rules. While however with their twelve-clay/tone music only the pitch process is fixed as row,with the serial music also the remaining parameters are quantified such as clay/tone duration , volume , tone quality , clay/tone density , articulation or kind of play by mathematical operations and seized in a number proportion determined first line up-moderately.

Special forms of the serial music are the punctual music and those statistic music.

The main problem of the serial music lies in two ranges:

  • Rezeption: The limited noticing achievement of the human short time memory (about six to eight seconds) not possibly makes it to through-listen the musical structures to thus take up and process by simply listening to of the composition; straight therefore becomes Serial music frequently as chaotically and unordered felt.
  • Interpretation: The limited exactness of instrument aluminum and Singstimmen prevents it to reproduce the over-accurate data of the composers sufficiently precisely.

These restrictions led inevitably to the development of the electronic music, which went around the human interpreter, and who Aleatorik, which tried, to rationalize and take into the music the coincidence into account. Today one must determine that the Serialismus is a current of the past, finds serialistische concepts entrance into compositions only isolated.

As key work to serial composition technology Karl Heinz of stick living groups is considered to three orchestras, 1957. Among the most important representatives of the serial music also Olivier

see also

portal: Music, twelve-clay/tone music (Dodekaphonie), electronic music, Aleatorik, Sound composition, sound surface composition


  • György Ligeti: Pierre Boulez. Decision and mechanism in the Structure Ia, in: the row. Information about serial music, number 4, 1958, S. 38-63.

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