Principios rotacionales y forma teleológica en el Concerto de Falla

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

This article applies James Hepokoski’s concepts of rotational form and teleological genesis to the first movement of Falla’s Concerto (1923-6). These analytical approaches shed light on the relationship between the movement’s musical content and its formal structure, showing how the first full statement of its thematic goal (its telos) is reached through a series of rotations, each one cycling through a selection from the same sequence of material. This interpretation chimes with Falla’s own belief that the form of a work should not be externally enforced, but should be determined by its content. Sketch analysis demonstrates that the telos was determined at an early stage in the compositional process, further demonstrating the primacy of content over form. The article proceeds to identify rotational principles in the other movements of the Concerto, and in other works by Falla written between 1919 and 1935 (Homenaje “Le Tombeau de Claude Debussy”, El retablo de maese Pedro, and Pour le Tombeau de Paul Dukas), and draws illuminating parallels with the compositional method of Falla’s contemporary Jean Sibelius, whose works similarly manifest rotational and teleological formal principles.


  • Analysis, Form and content, Compositional process, Sketch studies, Sibelius, Hepokoski
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-42
Number of pages19
Issue number53
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013
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