Academic journal article Review of Artistic Education

The Concept of Hermeneutics in Music Education: A Comparative Study from Kretzschmar to Kabalevsky

Academic journal article Review of Artistic Education

The Concept of Hermeneutics in Music Education: A Comparative Study from Kretzschmar to Kabalevsky

Article excerpt

(ProQuest: ... denotes non-USASCII text omitted.)


The problem of musical hermeneutics, as any other problem, has been examined at the beginning of the XIX century, in the context of various systems. The approach to this issue is an original one and must be carried out in the respective area - hermeneutics in the context of music education. In this study we intend to treat the concept of musical hermeneutics in the determination and development of modem European system of music education.

On the one hand, the establishment of this system, whose emergence and development began in the early XX century in Germany, is based on the ideas of the musicologist and teacher Herman Kretzschmar. On the other hand, Herman Kretzschmar is the author of the concept of musical hermeneutics, which has been formed in German aesthetics in the early XX century. Musical hermeneutics, by virtue of its importance for the whole art of music, must be seen today in terms of its scientific-methodological approach in the modem system of education.

And if the founder of modem musical education systemis considered Hermann Kretzschmar, who has been called The first German musical pioneer and who covered whith his exclusive competence the whole scientific, arthistic and practical horizons of musical education of the early XX century, then we can say that the followers of his idea are: Leo Kestenberg (Germany), Boris Asafiev (Russia), George Breazul (Romania), Zoltán Kodaly (Hungary). This list of well-known personlities for European art and music education goes on with the name of a Soviet Russian composer and teacher Dmitry Kabalevsky. Dmitry Kabalevsky was the author of a new concept of music education, which he had been elaborating for almost 30 years. He also held the post of honorary president of ISME (International Society for Music Education) for 16 years. The ISME was founded in 1953 by German musicologist and teacher Leo Kestenberg, the student and colleague of Herman Kretzschmar at Leipzig Conservatory.

In this context, through a comparative approach, we aim to research not only the prerequisites of the establishment of the modem music educational system, but also the ideas that underpin the foundation of this system. The studies allow us to determine several concepts, such as musical hermeneutics, which stands for music-pedagogical and aesthetic ideas of Herman Kretzschmar from the early XX century and of Dmitry Kabalevsky from the late XX century. Both of them are sumamed "the titans of European music-pedagogical domain".

The Concept of Hermeniutics in Music Education

Education value and the role of music is observed simultaneously with the ethos theory of morality and education of the ancient Greeks, and later in thewritings moralitos artis musical of theme dievalchurch, in the affect theory of music esthetics of the XVIII century.

If we have to talk about innovations in music education of the late XIX century, then their most illustious author is Hermann Kretzschmar. The German musicologist, conductor, scientist and teacher researched, discovered and established the terms of implementation of music education based on beauty. He also conceived the idea of musical hermeneutics. Kretzschmar established the scientific basis of music hermeneutics in his studies, where he wrote: "Music hermeneutics is a kind of applied musical aesthetics, which tends to establish (in a musical masterpiece) the meaning and the content of the ideas contained in forms, to search in matter the soul, to prove in every work of art the seed of thought, to suspect and to interpret, using all available details the whole of the clearest knowledge of the smallest details, by dint of specific training, literacy and talent"2 3 4.

The intentions to understand and to explain his concept of hermeneutics are found in their theoretical foundation and in their practical application in the music education of the people. According to Hermann Kretzschmar's hermeneutical concept the listener tries to explain, to distinguish rationally and to express in chosen poetic terms the content of soul movements, ideas and images that are hold in music. …

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