Polytonality


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.
Related to Polytonality: sprechstimme, tone cluster
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Polytonality

 

in music, the simultaneous use of different tonalities or keys. Bitonality—the use of two different tonalities —is the most common type of polytonality.

In practice, two monotonal lines with independent functional systems and cadences are rarely combined. As a rule, polytonality means the simultaneous use only of the chords of different tonalities. The classic example, the “Petrushka chord” in Stravinsky’s ballet Petrushka, combines the tonic of C major and that of F sharp major. Like other chords of this type, the Petrushka chord is strongly dissonant and dramatic. It is used as the “leading harmony” with which Petrushka is identified. Polytonality, one of the elements of the contemporary modal-harmonic system, has been widely used by D. Milhaud, B. Bartok, and other 20th-century composers.

IU. N. KHOLOPOV

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Tirro believes that the octet embodied significant elements of cool jazz, including influences from impressionist and neoclassical styles, quartal harmony, counterpoint, polytonality, polymeter, and non-jazz forms.
There are some adventurous sounds and techniques, although used sparingly: modality, black-key forearm clusters, whole-tone scales and one brief instance of polytonality.
(6.) Kaminsky, "Ravel's Late Music and the Problem of 'Polytonality.'" Music Theory Spectrum 26 (2004): 248.
Perhaps Milhaud's music seems less full of character because of his use of polytonality. Previous twentieth century works with eighteenth century settings, including Richard Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier (1911) and Stravinsky's The Rake's Progress (1951), have typically employed a neoclassical idiom, thereby acknowledging the context of the earlier time period.
In these sonatas, Jean combines traditional formal sonata form with polytonality, a bonding of major and minor triad forms.
Mitchell is renowned for her harmony, and Whitesell has studied the chord progression of every song within the period of his book, stratifying her practice into five categories: Modality; Polymodality; Chromaticism; Polytonality; and Strict Pedal Points.
He was a pioneer of polytonality and polymodality from the early 1900s onwards, besides being a master contrapuntist whose idol was J.
There's that slow, haunting, eerie opening with clever use of polytonality: the technique of being in two or more keys at once.
Four years later Arnold wrote Variations on a Ukrainian Folk Song, again mostly reflective in style, alternating between meandering slow variations and bursts of Prokofievan polytonality in the louder fast ones.
Reilly keeps the explanation to a minimum without failing to touch on the most important issues: polytonality, counterpoint, modulation.
But his predilection for polytonality and strong, albeit irregular rhythms gives his music its particular Oriental-Eastern-European flavor" (Notes in the score).
The highlight of chapter 6, "Polytonality, Counterpoint, and Instrumentation," is Kelly's emphasis on the often-overlooked composer Charles Koechlin, whom she credits with inspiring Milhaud to grant instrumentation a crucial role in the polytonal juxtaposition of horizontal lines.