Beethoven to early Debussy and Ravel. One of the significant differences Romantic music had from Classical or Baroque music was the sonorous sound that was preferred and emphasized. Romantic music was charged with emotion and feeling, and highlighted the sublime and the extremes of human nature. Musically, romanticism was categorized
by richer tones, harmony, and vast expansions in the ranges of pitch. In other words, romantic music would be Yao 7 something along the lines of what we now call “epic” music. Liszt, being a product of the Romantic Era, followed this transformation, and slowly moved away from virtuosic piano compositions to massive, sonorous orchestral and vocal works (Lang 315). In fact, when Liszt first abandoned his virtuosic career, his first work written was the Male-Voice Mass , a work composed for the Church (Merrick 28). Another prime example of this transformation is Liszt’s massive work, the Ann é es de p è lerinage , “Years of Pilgrimage”, a three-volume work written over a period of seven years, which show the transformation from tight, strict music to broad, inspirational romantic music (Lang 317). Throughout the work, his pieces convert from highly intense flashes of virtuosity to deep, emotional statements. In fact, one of his pieces in this collection, Sposalizio, “Marriage of the Virgin”, is based solely off of the composition and choral qualities of the chord (Lang 317). Since religious music is mainly based on the sonorous, divine sound quality, it was not uncommon for Liszt to compose religious music to fit the theme of the 19 th century. Liszt’s works, especially his masses and chorales, perfectly incorporated the desirable grand, fugal sound used to worship God. However, in addition to the change in musical composition and the desire of the sonorous sound, the Romantic Era also brought upon social, political, and religious mayhem. The Romantic Era, which extremely influenced by the French Revolution, brought upon political notions of reform, revolution, and change. The growing tension
between Church and State in France during the mid-1840s bought upon a battle for power and control between the people. Liszt clearly identified Yao 8 himself as an ally with the Catholic Church, and hence proceeded to join many reform groups, including the Catholic and social reformers, and the European artists reformers (Ellis 10). In fact, Paul Merrick writes: “The aim of nineteenth-century reformers of Catholic church music, and certainly of Liszt, was to bring religion close to the people” (Merrick 91). Clearly, Liszt was using his musical compositions to expand the religious
You've reached the end of your free preview.
Want to read all 11 pages?
- Fall '09
- Writing, Franz Liszt, Kaisen Yao, Music. Liszt