This thesis will comprise three investigative strands: first, an evaluation of the correspondence and critical writings of Peter Warlock (1894-1930) in terms of what they suggest about Warlock's aesthetic values and, in particular, his attitude to word and music interaction in song; secondly, a score-based analysis of word/music interaction in Warlock's Shakespeare settings; and finally, a study of recordings of the Shakespeare settings, which will consider word/music interaction in terms of changes in performance practice and recording technology.
Initially, Warlock's aesthetic development will be explored through a study of his published writings, correspondence, and early English song editions. His attitude to the interaction of words and music will be considered through an evaluation of his literary and musical creative output, and by assessing views expressed in his correspondence and published writings. These findings will be situated in the context of current theories concerning the relationship of words and music in song. Word/music interaction will then be assessed using comparative score-based comparative analyses, evaluating the interaction of words and music on sonic, temporal and expressive levels in Warlock's settings of poems by William Shakespeare. Finally, the thesis will consider the three areas of word/music interaction -- sonic, temporal, expressive -- in the light of recorded performances of the Shakespeare settings. Warlock's views of performance and recorded performance, the effect of changes in performance practice and recording technology, and current performers' experiences will be evaluated.