opera exam 3 - Puccini understanding Puccini tradition...

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Puccini - understanding Puccini tradition, taste, sound - verismo opera focus on lower class ordinary language (plain/ non poetic) - lurid plots bloody, makes you sick - beautiful music, colorful, shift in color, exoticism - orchestra: very big, loud, more aggressive sound, steel strings (lush) - Tosca (1900): a “shabby little shocker” what people who didn’t like Puccini called it - new voice type emerges very powerful voice that is meant to “carry” (spinto voice) - Madame Butterfly - libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa . - based on a short story by John Luther Long - historical background suppression or piracy - popular literature = travelogue - plot - Benjamin Franklin Pinkerston (American) supposed to marry Cio-Cio San (Ms. Butterfly, Japanese girl) - he leaves and comes back with his American wife and they want the child - Cio-Cio San gives up child then commits suicide - pentatonic scale Yamadori meant to sound Asian - hear star-spangled banner, meant to clash with pentatonic scale - Act 1: marriage - Act 2: living in poverty, Benjamin Franklin Pinkerston’s return - “Un bel di” very famous aria by Cio-Cio San, “one beautiful day”; big refrain then gets repeated - tells a story of a ship coming and then firing a salute and then see Pinkerston coming to find her, singing “Oh, Butterfly,” from Act 1 this all happens just as she says except one thing he has brought his American wife with him and he is not going to give her the respect she expects/deserves - refrain, narration, refrain again Wagner - Beethoven was the one who changed music in the 19 th century - Wagner was most important and changer of music after Beethoven - modernity thought they were moving way forward and not like old style - had a huge ego claimed to be defining German music (future of German music) - critic of Italian opera, unpleasant individual, not going to like him - Hans Von Bulow: famous conductor for Wagner - stayed with him even after Wagner stole his wife because he knew Wagner was very influential - music of Wagner - dissonance: harshness that requires a resolution - uses big dissonance less dissonance (harsh less harsh) - you anticipate the outcome because of dissonance, but he doesn’t give it to you until the very end (manipulating, unsettling) - wave shapes: start small and get bigger and bigger and right before it is ready to crash another one starts small again and gets bigger and bigger… - goes into the psychological to make operas more appealing - he writes own librettos; operas are “all about Wagner”, takes control of audience emotions, separating himself from tradition opera - Tristan and Isolde (1865), Act 1, prelude - Wagner calls it a music drama (music complete meaning of language) - Tristan chord dark dissonances - plot: King Mark sends Tristan to capture Isolde - Act 1: Isolde’s servant is supposed to poison Tristan but she give them a love potion and they fall in love - Act 2: King Mark sees them together and Tristan is mortally wounded
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opera exam 3 - Puccini understanding Puccini tradition...

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