Publication Date



Open access

Embargo Period


Degree Type

Doctoral Essay

Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)


Instrumental Performance (Music)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

Gabriel Beavers

Second Committee Member

Margaret A. Donaghue

Third Committee Member

Trudy Kane

Fourth Committee Member

Alan O. Johnson


The purpose of this essay is to explore performance techniques exemplified within some of Franz Schubert’s art songs, or lieder, for voice and piano, and to develop a series of pedagogical characteristics for lyrical bassoon playing. The study is in the form of a performance supplement centered around a set of transcriptions of these works for the bassoon. An instrument used in large ensemble, solo, chamber music settings, the bassoon possesses a variety of characteristics reminiscent of a human singing voice, especially while playing exposed lyrical melodies in its tenor register. Bassoonists, and many instrumentalists, strive to emulate this performance approach by playing sustained, lyrical passages as if they were sung. This essay is meant to address several aspects of lyrical vocal production that instrumentalists often emulate, including aspects of the vocal range, breathing, articulation, vibrato, and phrasing, comparing them to similar ideas that bassoonists focus on in their tonal development. With this supplement, understanding certain performance techniques that vocalists demonstrate so naturally will help bassoonists better comprehend the capabilities of their sound in a performance setting. The selected lieder that are examined and transcribed as part of this essay are: “Das Wandern,” “Am Feierabend,” “Des Müller’s Blumen,” and “Der Müller Und Der Bach” from Franz Schubert’s song cycle, Die Schöne Müllerin.


bassoon; lyrical; lied; art song; voice; transcribe