Stetson Spotlight Series Presents: Daniil Zavlunov

The 2018-19 Stetson Spotlight Series continues on April 12 with a presentation by Dr. Daniil Zavlunov, Assistant Professor of Music History, who will speak on “The Afterlife of Tselontnyä-Analiz (Holistic Analysis): Topic Theory in Soviet Musicology”.

Date: Friday, April 12
Time: 1:30 pm- 2:30 pm
Location: Lynn Business Center 124
Snacks will be available. All are welcome!

Please encourage your students to attend.

Click here for a complete schedule of Stetson’s Spotlight Series.

The Afterlife of Tselontnyä-Analiz (Holistic Analysis): Topic Theory in Soviet Musicology

During the 1930s, Soviet music scholars were intent on developing a “Marxist theory of music.” One of the most significant manifestations of that search was the creation of a new analytical method called “tselostnïy analiz” (holistic analysis), which aimed to consider musical structure, content, and context symbiotically. More radically, holistic analysis itself was an attempt to define and legitimize the discipline of music analysis as a “scientific” endeavor and an independent branch of Soviet musicology. One of the distinctive trademarks of holistic analysis was its direct interest in engaging with music’s signifying potential, which engendered a blossoming of musical semiotics, and, specifically, of—what in the West today is known as—“topic theory.” Topics are musical “signs,” commonplaces, or conventions, which are capable of extra-musical signification. They are elements of musical discourse, furnishing one possible access to meaning in music. Significantly, Soviet topic theory predates that in the West by some decades. My Spotlight talk explores the philosophy behind and ideology of holistic analysis, and then considers one of the analytical system’s most important contributions.

Daniil Zavlunov is a musicologist specializing in nineteenth-century music, with a particular emphasis on the Russian and Italian operatic traditions. Over the last decade, his research has focused on the works and world of Mikhail Glinka. At present, Dr. Zavlunov is writing a cultural history of opera in Russia during the reign of Nicholas I (1825-1855), which draws heavily on new archival sources.

His other scholarly interests include 17th- and 18th-century music, Soviet music and intellectual thought about music, theories of musical form, and music analysis. Some of his research has appeared in The Journal of Musicology and Music Theory Online. In recent years, he has held visiting appointments – teaching music history and theory – at Princeton University, Dartmouth, Skidmore and Haverford Colleges.

At Stetson, Dr. Zavlunov teaches a wide variety of courses in the School of Music, the Department of Creative Arts and the Program in Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies. In addition to his pedagogical and scholarly pursuits, he is also an avid harpsichordist.

Stetson Spotlight Series

The Stetson Spotlight Series at Stetson University is a showcase of faculty research, creative inquiry, and other scholarly engagement to the campus community. Presenters are primarily recipients of grant awards through the Stetson Summer Grant Program.

Click here for a complete schedule of the Stetson Spotlight Series.