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(twelve-tone music), a type of musical composition that evolved during the development of atonalism. Dodecaphony was an important contribution to the modern musical avant-garde. The Austrian composer J. Hauer first attempted to create works by the principle of dodecaphony between 1910 and 1920. Another Austrian composer, A. Schonberg developed the method fully and applied it in his work (Five Piano Pieces, Opus 23, 1923).

The melodic and harmonic basis of a dodecaphonic composition is known as a note-series (row; in German, die Reihe) and consists of a chosen succession of 12 tones of different pitch. A series includes each tone of the chromatic scale; however, no one tone may be repeated in the series. Within a composition a series represents a selected set of intervals that comprises the intonational foundation. The note-series may also be used in various forms (modi); in addition to its original form, it may be used in its inversion, in a retrograde form, and in a retrograde inversion. Each of these four modi can be transposed to any of the 12 degrees of the chromatic scale; thus, the series becomes available in as many as 48 tonal versions. Using this technique a composer selects a group of tones in the various modi of a series for the melody, contrapuntal voices, and harmony. The introduction of tonal combinations not produced from the series is not permitted in dodecaphony. Some composers, who recognize tonality as the basis of music, have employed the method of dodecaphony in individual sections of their works.


Til’man, I. “O dodekafonnom metode kompositsii.” Sovetskaia muzyka, 1958, no. 11.
Denisov, E. “Dodekafoniia i problemy sovremennoi kompozitorskoi tekhniki.” Muzyka i sovremennost’, issue 6. Moscow, 1969.
Hauer, J. Vom Wesen des Musikalischen. Ein Lehrbuch der Zwölftonmusik. Vienna, 1920.
Schönberg, A. Style and Idea. New York, 1950.
Kfenek, E. Zwolftonkontrapunkt-Studien. Mainz, 1952.
Jelinek, H. Anleitung zur Zwölftonkomposition, vols. 1-2. Vienna, 1952-58.
Perle, G. Serial Composition and Atonality, 2nd ed. Berkeley-Los Angeles, 1968.


References in periodicals archive ?
39) Schoenberg himself mobilised the rhetoric of messianism in support of his utopian vision of emancipation and salvation, professing a mystical conviction that he had been elected to proclaim the 'law' of dodecaphony (and suffer for it) on 'orders from the Supreme Commander'.
I have also researched into the possibilities of serialism and dodecaphony, which in connection with minimalism and microtonality are nowhere near exhausted.
A recent issue includes articles on Bach (interpretation and theory), dodecaphony, Bolshevik music and propaganda, as well as book and recording reviews.
Yet Schoenberg's music dating from his subsequent atonal period and the phase following the devising of the dodecaphony technique was largely apprehended as "nihilistic" and merely "mathematical", or "spectacularly ponderous".
Does dodecaphony really 'exhaust talent' and turn creativity into a 'series of brain-wracking computations'?
The almost negligible interest in Schonberg's dodecaphony and the freely atonal and later music of Anton Webern was paralleled by the almost complete lack of response to the work of the futurists, who were little known in the CSR and/or seemed too radical and so incompatible with the desire of most Czechoslovak inter-war composers to synthesise avant-garde influences and so exclude or tone down extremes.
Dodecaphony was acclaimed as the music of the avant-garde.
In terms of tonal organization, this group of Nigerian composers was tutored in the Western theoretical principles of the early twentieth century such as the twelve-tone-row method, atonality, dodecaphony, dissonance, pandiatonicism, serialism, octatonic scales, and so forth.
In a less theoretical manner, Doris Lanz examines Veress's changing relationship with dodecaphony, a technique he categorically rejected in a note dated July 1951, but nevertheless adopted in a work completed as early as August 1952.
The sixties, in which every composer came to terms in his or her way with the dodecaphony and serialism, were followed by a seventies dominated alas by political and cultural repression.
These are the first inklings, repeated often throughout the later essays in this book, of Lutoslawski's deep-seated suspicions regarding the long-term viability of dodecaphony and serialism.
You are a pioneer of dodecaphony among Czech composers.