Liudmila Kazantseva

The Theory of Musical Content as a Pedagogic Tool

е academic subject ‘Theory of musical content’ is a practical adaptation of scientific ideas that are being developed by a branch of musicology, which was formed in research by Boris Asafiev, Vyacheslav Medushevsky, Valentina Kholopova and others. It has been directing the attention of the learners to the ‘musical intonation’, the ‘musical imagery’, the ‘musical drama’, the artistic ‘theme’ and the ‘idea’ of the piece of music, the ‘program foundation’, and to the question of the author’s ‘self-expression’, intertextual connections between artistic works, and other phenomena that determine the essence of music, but don’t receive the proper learning from the existing academic disciplines. The need for this training course is dictated by the accumulation of a fair amount of knowledge of the expressive side of music covering its meanings and ideas. It is in demand because manifestly ‘technical’ bias prevails in the educational process. Academic disciplines which study ‘how’ a piece of music is made must be balanced by other ones allowing students to comprehend ’what’ exactly is made by the composer.
In addition, the figurative and artistic approach to the phenomenon of musical sound allows young musicians to comprehend many of the non-academic styles, such as jazz, rock and pop music. Being professionally equipped with the new analytical techniques developed for penetration into the semantic aspect of the piece of music, the student is able to navigate in complex and varied social and cultural processes.
The years of practice show that the author’s  training course ‘The Theory of Musical Content’ equips students with knowledge of the most important aspects of music, with experience of its analysis and with the awareness of the necessity of taking a thoughtful and professionally serious attitude towards music. Finally this course will effectively promote formation of the musician’s personality.