Theses Doctoral

Liminality as a Framework for Composition: Rhythmic Thresholds, Spectral Harmonies and Afrological Improvisation

Lehman, Stephen Hart

This paper examines the ways in which involvement with both French spectral music and Afrological forms of improvisation has informed my current work as a composer. I present a brief overview of the major concerns and preoccupations of both musics as well as an account of the overlapping histories of spectral music and Afrological improvisation, with particular attention to the concepts of liminality and rhythmic thresholds in the light of recent music perception research. Finally, through an in-depth analysis of two of my recent compositions, Echoes (2008) and Baltimore/Berlin (2008, rev. 2011), I show how this ongoing inquiry allows us to think about composition in new and fruitful ways.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Thesis Advisors
Lewis, George E.
D.M.A., Columbia University
Published Here
July 17, 2012


Accompanying musical score available at