Date of Completion


Embargo Period


Major Advisor

Irma Vallecillo

Associate Advisor

Glenn Stanley

Associate Advisor

Peter Kaminsky

Field of Study



Doctor of Musical Arts

Open Access

Campus Access


Over its long history, the fantasy for keyboard instrument has taken many different styles and forms. It began as a primarily contrapuntal genre in the early sixteenth century and then took on new forms and styles in the centuries to come. After briefly tracing its origins and development up through 1700, this thesis will focus on the keyboard fantasies of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, against the backdrop of the fantasies by two important eighteenth-century predecessors, Johann Sebastian Bach and Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach. The formal organization, harmonic language, and melodic style of selected works by these composers are analyzed, whereby influences and innovations are discussed against the backdrop of contemporary writing on the genre. Mozart drew on his predecessors’ work, but he also applied principles of the classical style in achieving a unique synthesis of historical and then contemporary style.

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