Ritmoplastia By Cacilda Borges Barbosa: A Performing Edition



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This study presents a performing edition of the method Ritmoplastia created by the Brazilian composer Cacilda Borges Barbosa (1914-2010). Barbosa created Ritmoplastia as a means of recording popular and folkloric Brazilian dances. With the assistance of choreographer Clara Semeles, Barbosa developed a style of notation that combines music notation and plastias, symbols that represent bodily gestures. This performing edition draws on manuscripts, typed educational booklets, and compositions by Barbosa and others, with Ritmoplastia notation added. This study is enriched by other primary sources such as recital programs, manuscript drafts, Ritmoplastia class plans, course syllabi, and compositions. This study is divided into four chapters. The first chapter presents Cacilda Borges Barbosa’s biography and describes her career as a musician, composer, and pedagogue. The second chapter traces a history of Ritmoplastia and describes the primary sources consulted for this dissertation, nearly all from a private collection held by the Barbosa family. The third chapter focuses on the plastia symbol system, investigating its origins and deciphering its meanings. The fourth chapter presents the notation format, major sources, and editorial processes used in the production of this performing edition. After Chapter Four follows Ritmoplastia: A Performing Edition, organized in an introduction and four parts: Ritmoplastia within the Metric Unit and its Subdivisions, Ritmoplastia in Rhythmic Variation, Ritmoplastia in Short Musical Examples, and Ritmoplastia Compositions. This edition intends to contribute to the artistic enhancement of musicians and dancers.



Music, Dance, Music education, Musical performance, Dance notation, Brazilian music, Brazilian dance