WVU Music 271 Podcast


April 5, 2007

Music 271: 4/2/07
II: The post-Romantic Period and the turn towards the 20th century: the generation of 1860:
• Hard to differentiate the Nationalistic composition and composer
• Beginnings of another break: divide between composers born before and after 1860:
• Hugo Wolf, Gustav Mahler, Eduard MacDowell, Claude Debussy, Horatio Parker, Richard Strauss, Jean Sibelius, Amy Cheney Beach, Scott Joplin: all born in the decade of 1860
• Mahler, Debussy, and Joplin were all prophetic
• Strauss: Symphonic poems, Opera, Art songs
• Mahler - Schoenberg - Weber (evolution)
• Ragtime was first form of New Orleans Jazz
III: Gustav Mahler (1860-1911):
A: Biographical Sketch
1. Polka mit einem Trauermarsch als Einleitung (Polka with a funeral march as introduction): Composed at age 5: Composed after the subsequent deaths of 2 of Mahler’s brothers
• Born in Czech Republic (Bohemia)
• Dysfunctional family
• Direct and indirect references to death (Mahler 1 as an example)
• 1880’s found Mahler in Vienna Conservatory
• Mentors were 4 individuals: Beethoven (Romantic), Schopenhauer - philosopher, R. Wagner, Nietzsche - argued that 2 aspects of human existence: rational and emotional
• Melodies proceed from words, as do tonal centers and other elements in the music (Mahler 2: C minor-Eb Major: Death - Resurrection)
• Culmination of philosophical beliefs and musical practices that cover the entire 19th century Germanic domain
B: His place in music history:
C: Place of song in Mahler’s music:
• 9 symphonies - 4 include vocal soloists (2,3,4,8)
• Many art songs for voice and piano, which were orchestrated later
• Kindertotenlieder: Songs on the Deaths of Children (1901-1904): Full Orchestra setting but used like a chamber group

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