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Berlioz's Semi-Operas : <i>Romeo et Juliette</i> and <i>La damnation de Faust</i> - Daniel Albright

Berlioz's Semi-Operas

Romeo et Juliette and La damnation de Faust

Hardcover Published: 1st June 2006
ISBN: 9781580460941
Number Of Pages: 168

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This work studies two works that are among the most challenging of the entire Romantic Movement, not least because they assault the notion of genre: they take place in a sort of limbo between symphony and opera, and try to fulfill the highest goals of each simultaneously. Berlioz was a composer who strenuously resisted any impediments that stood in the way of complete compositional freedom. Most of his large-scale works nevertheless obey the strictures of some preexistent form, whether opera or symphony or mass or cantata; it is chiefly in these two experiments that Berlioz allowed himself to be Berlioz. One of the central characteristics of Romanticism is the belief that all arts are one, that literature, painting, and music have a common origin and a common goal; and this book tries to show that Berlioz achieved a Gesamtkunstwerk, a fusion of arts, in a manner even more impressive (in certain respects) than that of Wagner, in that Berlioz implicated into his total-art-work texts by two of the greatest poets of Western literature, Shakespeare and Goethe. The method of this book is unusual in that it pays equally close attention to the original text (Romeo and Juliet and Faust)as well as to the musical adaptation; furthermore, it suggests many analogues in the operatic world which Berlioz knew -- the world of Gluck, Mozart, Mehul, Spontini, Cherubini -- in order to show exactly how Berlioz followed or flouted the dramatic conventions of his age. This book aims to contribute to Berlioz studies, to studies of the Romantic Movement, and to the rapidly growing field of comparative arts. 'Albright's work will inform and entertain admirers of Shakespeare, Goethe, and Berlioz alike.' - Julian Rushton, West Riding Professor of Music, University of Leeds Daniel Albright is Richard L. Turner Professor in the Humanities at the University of Rochester.

Industry Reviews

Albright has written a literary essay of great originality and charm, appealing to undergraduates through faculty, general readers, and professionals in both music and the humanitites. CHOICE

Albright's work will inform and entertain admirers of Shakespeare, Goethe, and Berlioz alike. --Julian Rushton, West Riding Professor of Music, University of Leeds

The rhetoric is comfortable, modern, familiar. . . 132 affable, inviting pages. . . of its originality there can be no doubt. OPERA QUARTERLY

The originality of Albright's work lies in his unusual capacity to read texts and listen to music with a similar degree of sensitivity and insight and to detect the deeper resonance in structure and signification between the two without compromising their individuality. THE EUROPEAN ROMANTIC REVIEW, December 2003

This is a wonderful, concise, and compact discussion of two interesting and complex musical works of the Romantic period, exploring the historical and dramatic backgrounds of two of the more popular literary stories in human history. While written from the scholarly perspective, this book is easy to read and not overly technical in its presentation. OPERATODAY.COM [Dr. Brad Eden]

List of Illustrationsp. vii
List of Music Examplesp. ix
Prefacep. xi
Shakespeare's Romeo and Julietp. 1
Introductionp. 1
The Veronese Social Codep. 2
The Code of Lovep. 12
Love against Languagep. 21
From Shakespeare to Berliozp. 29
The Afterlife of Romeo and Julietp. 29
La lance branleep. 34
Berlioz's Romeo et Juliettep. 39
Berlioz in the Pluralp. 39
Romeo et Juliette: Introduction and Prologuep. 45
Romeo et Juliette: The Symphonyp. 55
Romeo et Juliette: The Opera Resumesp. 71
Goethe's Faustp. 81
Introductionp. 81
Getting Lost in Domains of Desirep. 82
The Garden of Forking Pathsp. 87
A Real Girlp. 89
Wall-purgingp. 93
Fairy Opticsp. 96
Traveling Southp. 97
Rhymes and Similesp. 100
From Goethe to Berliozp. 106
Goethe in Francep. 106
Berlioz's La damnation de Faustp. 110
The Anti-Faustp. 110
Berlioz contra Goethep. 112
Psychological Melodiesp. 115
Feigned Operap. 120
The Dismemberment of Berliozp. 130
Toward Gounodp. 132
Notesp. 133
Biblography of Works Citedp. 138
Indexp. 141
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9781580460941
ISBN-10: 1580460941
Series: Eastman Studies in Music
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 168
Published: 1st June 2006
Publisher: Boydell & Brewer Ltd
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.88  x 1.27
Weight (kg): 0.48