Kevin M. Wilson


Isorhythm and Musical Identities

This essay represents a recent effort to consider critically musical theoretic building blocks, syntax, and interrelationships as organizing principles that relate distinctive musical forms, including isorhythmic, canonical, fugal, and serial forms.  Using Guillaume de Machaut’s Messe de Notre Dame as an launching point, we consider analytical challenges in interpreting historical music that parallel the challenges a composer faces when making logical decisions about formalistic phenomena.