Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Document Type



The objective of this dissertation is to present an original work that represents this writer’s perspective as a composer and to examine the work, Violin Concerto No.1, by American composer and educator, James Aikman. The first component of this dissertation is this writer’s composition Joshua: Symphonic Suite No. 2. This work, which portrays the Old Testament Bible story of Joshua, son of Nun, is a neo-tonal ballet, which features the violin extensively. The ballet is divided into four movements, each of which corresponds to a segment of Joshua’s story, including “Joshua and Caleb,” “Rahab and the Spies,” “The River Jordan,” and “The Walls of Jericho.” This writer’s compositional techniques used for this work included the Principle of Limited Economy, or POLE technique, and Musical Numerology. The second component of this dissertation is an examination of James Aikman’s compositional technique in his Violin Concerto No. 1. Written in 2009, the work is divided into three movements: “Prologue/Improvisation/Prologue,” “Quasi una fantasia,” and “Toccata.” Through analysis and interviews with Aikman, research demonstrates that he used the POLE technique as a principle compositional device throughout the piece. In the first movement, he applied the POLE technique to texture. In the second and third movements, he applied the POLE technique to motivic development. Ultimately, Aikman used the POLE technique to develop his musical ideas and to help create cohesion in his work.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Constantinides, Dinos



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Music Commons