Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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Approaches to the Performance of Musical and Extra-Musical References in Shostakovich’s Viola Sonata

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posted on 2023-03-14, 23:31 authored by Roxburgh, John David

This paper is an examination of Shostakovich’s Viola Sonata, op. 147, for developing a stylistically informed performance practice. It is divided into three parts: The first is an investigation of symbolism present within the work itself; the second a comparative analysis of recordings; and the third a discussion of how the author uses these approaches to make performance decisions. The first aspect looks to the score itself to identify quotations of and allusions to other works, and considers the reasoning for this. The second analyses string choice and tempo of recordings to consider how these might reflect symbolic considerations. The third part discusses specific performance decisions, and the reasons on which they are based.


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Musical Arts

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Music

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code

970120 Expanding Knowledge in Languages, Communication and Culture

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

New Zealand School of Music


Maurice, Donald; Cosper, David