204lect7 - Lecture 7 Summary Today, we take a look at...

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Lecture 7 – Summary Today, we take a look at Hippolyte et Aricie , a tragédie lyrique (or tragédie en musique ) by Jean-Philippe Rameau (1683-1764). A major composer of the French Baroque, Rameau was roughly contemporary with Bach and Handel. He was widely known as a music theorist. In his book Traité de l’Harmonie (1722), he developed a way of analyzing music that stresses the identity and function of chords within a given key. (Those of you who have studied music theory can thank Rameau for the Roman numeral system of harmonic analysis.) When Rameau was fifty years old, his first opera, Hippolyte at Aricie, received its premiere at the Opéra in Paris. The libretto, written by Simon-Joseph Pellegrin, takes on the classic structure of a prologue and five acts. It is based on a drama by Euripedes, and especially on a seventeenth-century version by the French playwright Racine. Here’s a brief summary of the plot. Thesée (Theseus) is king of Athens. Phèdre (Phaedra) is his second wife. Hippolyte (Hippolytus) is Thesée’s son. He is in love with
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204lect7 - Lecture 7 Summary Today, we take a look at...

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