Author(s)Palley, Lisa C.
California State University, Northridge. Department of Music
Stones, Linda M.
KeywordsHandel, George Frederick, 1685-1759
Schubert, Franz, 1797-1828.
Faure??, Gabriel, 1845-1924
Dickinson, Emily, 1830-1886.
Copland, Aaron, 1900-1990.
Persichetti, Vincent, 1915-1987
Obradors, Fernando J.
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AbstractIncludes recorded audio files in WAV and MP3 formats, 71:42 in length
George Frederic Handel wrote approximately 100 secular cantats, most of them for the Marquis Francesco Maria Ruspoli whom Handel served in Rome between the years 1707 and 1709. The majority of these cantatas are for solo voice and basso continuo. Some of them are with single obbligato instrument or orchestral accompaniment. Of these cantatas, nearly half are comprised of two da capo arias, each introduced by a recitative (R-A-R-A). Nell dolce dell??? oblio is one such cantata. It features a solo flute obbligato part with substantial imitative writing between instrument and voice. During his short lifetime, Franz Schubert wrote over 600 songs. His melodies exhibit a wonderful simplicity and directness and often great lyrical beauty. Schubert set the poems of great German Romantic poets (Goethe, Heine, von Schiller) as well as those of his less talented personal friends. Schubert excelled in producing expressive piano accompaniments for his songs, which enhanced the Romantic poet???s vivid imagery drawn from the natural world. Auf dem Wasser zu singen, composed in 1823, is a good example of a strophic song brought to life with piano figuration that represents the sounds and rhythms of water cascading and evokes sunlight on the waves and rocking boat. The poet???s restless yearning is expressed in the key changes from major to minor. The song cycle La Bonne Chanson was composed by Gabriel Faure in 1891-92. The nine poems of the cycle were written Paul Verlaine in 1870, just prior to his marriage to Mathilde Maute de Fleurville. The texts are filled with joy, hope, exaltation and love. The cycle was written for voice and piano and while Faure did arrange it later for voice, string quartet and piano, he did not feel that this arrangement was successful. In La Bonne Chanson, eight motifs (melodic, rhythmic and intervallic) appear and reappear in the various song and serve to weave them together resulting in a highly organized and interrelated cycle. The final song, L???Hiver a cesse contains all but two of the eight motifs. Faure???s writing is contrapuntal with considerable chromaticism and syncopation. His brilliant sensitivity to the texts is apparent throughout. Emily Dickinson (1830-1886) saw only seven of her poems published during her lifetime, and those anonymously. After her death, her sister Lavinia discovered over 900 poems. Today Dickinson is celebrated as one of the great American lyric poets of the nineteenth century. Dickinson???s innovations in rhythms and rhymes as well as her love of nature and the strikingly passionate content of her poetry are some of the characteristics that have attracted so many composers to set her words to music. (See more in text.)