Music at the Limits
Edward W. Said
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Music at the Limits is the first book to bring together three decades of Edward W. Said's essays and articles on music. Addressing the work of a variety of composers, musicians, and performers, Said carefully draws out music's social, political, and cultural contexts and, as a classically trained pianist, provides rich and often surprising assessments of classical music and opera.
Music at the Limits offers both a fresh perspective on canonical pieces and a celebration of neglected works by contemporary composers. Said faults the Metropolitan Opera in New York for being too conservative and laments the way in which opera superstars like Pavarotti have "reduced opera performance to a minimum of intelligence and a maximum of overproduced noise." He also reflects on the censorship of Wagner in Israel; the worrisome trend of proliferating music festivals; an opera based on the life of Malcolm X; the relationship between music and feminism; the pianist Glenn Gould; and the works of Mozart, Bach, Richard Strauss, and others.
Said wrote his incisive critiques as both an insider and an authority. He saw music as a reflection of his ideas on literature and history and paid close attention to its composition and creative possibilities. Eloquent and surprising, Music at the Limits preserves an important dimension of Said's brilliant intellectual work and cements his reputation as one of the most influential and groundbreaking scholars of the twentieth century.
Eliot appear to be out of their time altogether, returning to ancient myth or antique forms such as the epic or ancient religious ritual for their inspiration. Among other figures, writers like Lampedusa, the Sicilian aristocrat who wrote only one, backward-looking novel, The Leopard, which interested no publishers at all while he was alive, or Constantine Cavafy, the Alexandrian Greek poet who also published next to nothing during his lifetime, suggest the rarefied, almost precious, but
festivals; see also specific festival names The Musical Offering (Bach) musical performance: competition in; interpretation in; marketplace and; mimetic norms in; regime of; as self-dramatizing phenomenon; separation from composition; watching vs. listening; see also pianism Musical Thoughts and Afterthoughts (Brendel) music criticism: feminism and musicology Music Sounded Out (Brendel) Muti, Riccardo Mutter, Anne-Sophie Nadler, Sheila Nagano, Kent Nasir, Hana Nattiez, Jean-Jacques
Natural Supernaturalism (Abrams) Nazi Party (National Socialism), see Third Reich NBC Orchestra: Toscanini as conductor of Nel, Anton Netherlands Opera The New Science (Vico) New York City Opera: From the House of the Dead; repertory of; Die Soldaten; X (The Life and Times of Malcolm X) Nietzsche, Friedrich Ninth Symphony (Beethoven) Norman, Jessye The Not Quite Innocent Bystander (Steuermann) old age, style of “On the Fetish-Character in Music and the Regression of Listening”
Thomas Mann, alternates between the demonic and the quasi-ethereal, there is always a healthy modicum of gritty technical effort to be appreciated. Proust once said that every artist has a particular tune (chanson) that can be found in every work: a special cadence, theme, obsession or characteristic key absolutely the artist’s own. Mozart’s key may be the way configurations of the human voice enter all his melodic phrases; Bach’s, the combination of rhythm and polyphonic statement (the “dance
study, Busoni the Composer (Indiana University Press). In addition, Beaumont was the man who actually completed the score of Faust, about a decade ago (Schönberg characteristically refused Busoni’s widow’s request to conclude the work from her husband’s sketches). Beaumont discusses his work on the score of Faust in a very interesting section of the E.N.O.’s program for the opera, which also includes studies on the Faust legend, on the possible analogies between Faust and Edward Teller (an