The Musical Language of the Twentieth Century

The Discovery of a Missing Link- The Music of Georg von Albrecht

by Elliot Antokoletz (Author)
©2012 Monographs 309 Pages


This book provides not only an understanding and appreciation of Georg von Albrecht’s musical art, but also links his compositional approach to a broader historical and theoretical context. The significance of the study lies in the discovery of a «missing historical link» in the evolution of principles that range from the pentatonic formations and modalities of folk music and polymodal combination to the more abstract realm of serial procedures. These principles often unfold in contexts based on complex metric/rhythmic formulizations. Albrecht, whose folkloristic activities and compositional inclinations invoke the creative spirit of Béla Bartók, is an exemplar of a composer who has synthesized traditional and contemporary elements from both Eastern and Western European sources. He was inspired by many cultures, his music imbued with Byzantine and ancient Greek elements, Hebrew folklore, and Gregorian elements, as well as the pentatonicism of Eastern Asia. Russian and Lithuanian folklore underlies virtually all of his works. Albrecht’s profound reflections on music as well as the remarkable range of his compositional aesthetics and techniques still provide the music historian with a new level of insight into some essential links in the evolution of twentieth-century music and thought.


ISBN (Hardcover)
Publication date
2012 (August)
pitch organization folk modalities Stravinsky, Igor Bartók, Béla Scriabin, Alexander rhythm Prokofiev, Sergei
Frankfurt am Main, Berlin, Bern, Bruxelles, New York, Oxford, Wien, 2012. 310 pp., 117 examples of notes

Biographical notes

Elliot Antokoletz (Author)

Elliott Antokoletz, Professor of Musicology at the University of Texas at Austin, is author of several books on 20th-century music and editor of the International Journal of Musicology. He received the Béla Bartók Memorial Plaque and Diploma from the Hungarian Government in 1981. Majoring in violin at The Juilliard School, he later received his PhD in Musicology from the City University of New York.


Title: The Musical Language of the Twentieth Century