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The Gesualdo hex : music, myth, and memory

Author: Glenn Watkins
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton, ©2010.
Edition/Format:   Book : Biography : English : 1st edView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
In this vivid tale of adultery and intrigue, witchcraft and murder, Glenn Watkins explores the fascinating life of the Renaissance composer Carlo Gesualdo--a life suffused with scandal and bordering on the fantastical. An isolated prince, Gesualdo had a personal life that was no less eccentric and bewildering than the music he composed; his biography has often clouded our perception of his oeuvre, which has  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Criticism, interpretation, etc
Named Person: Carlo Gesualdo, principe di Venosa; Carlo Gesualdo, principe di Venosa; Carlo Gesualdo; Carlo Gesualdo; Carlo Gesualdo; Carlo Gesualdo; Carlo Gesualdo, principe di Venosa
Material Type: Biography, Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Glenn Watkins
ISBN: 9780393071023 0393071022
OCLC Number: 317919895
Description: xvi, 384 pages : illustrations (some color), map ; 25 cm
Contents: Preface / Claudio Abbado --
Prelude to a Vicenda --
Part One: Gesualdo and the crisis of the Late Renaissance --
The hex is cast --
The last madrigals : removing the secret veil --
Magic, melancholy, and spiritual exercises --
Last words --
Part Two: Schoenberg: backward glances, 1940-1950. --
Conversations at the brink : a Schoenberg-Leibowitz correspondence, 1945-1950 --
"On revient toujours" --
Part Three: Stravinsky: the pastness of the present, 1956-1966. --
Canticum sacrum : old and new at San Marco --
Sacrae cantionum : Gesualdo redux, 1603,1959 --
Close encounters : Monumentum and Movements --Part Four: The Prince in a Postmodern World. --
Stoking the flame --
Gesualdo fever --
Part Five: Gesualdo and the challenge to history. --
Retrospectives ; closure or continuity? --
Reinventing history --
Envoi --
Appendix 1: A Gesualdo Breviary --
Appendix 2: A Gesualdo portrait gallery.
Responsibility: Glenn Watkins ; preface by Claudio Abbado.

Abstract:

Explores the life of Renaissance composer Gesualdo - a life suffused with scandal and bordering on the fantastical - as well as the impact of his music on a host of later musicians and artists from  Read more...

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[A] brilliant look at how cultural influences propagate through time in strange and unpredictable ways "

 
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schema:description"In this vivid tale of adultery and intrigue, witchcraft and murder, Glenn Watkins explores the fascinating life of the Renaissance composer Carlo Gesualdo--a life suffused with scandal and bordering on the fantastical. An isolated prince, Gesualdo had a personal life that was no less eccentric and bewildering than the music he composed; his biography has often clouded our perception of his oeuvre, which has periodically been dismissed as a late Renaissance deformation of little consequence. Today, however, Gesualdo's music, once deemed so strange as to be unperformable, stands as one of the most vibrant legacies of the late Italian Renaissance, with an undeniable impact on a host of twentieth-century musicians and artists. The incendiary details of Gesualdo's life recede, and his grip on our musical imagination comes to the fore. Watkins challenges our preconceptions of what has become a nearly mythic persona, weaving together the cumulative experience of some of the most vibrant artists of the past century, from Stravinsky and Schoenberg to Abbado and Herzog. Beyond questions of mere influence, however, The Gesualdo Hex offers a profound meditation on cultural memory and historical awareness: how composers attempt to shape the legacy they will bequeath to the world, and how music and history inevitably take on a new guise as they are revisited by subsequent generations and reinterpreted in light of contemporary experience. In examining Gesualdo's life, music, myth, and memory intertwine with one another to reveal an uncanny affinity with our own time. With his elegant and engaging prose, Watkins asks us to grapple with our understanding not only of art and the artists who create it but also of history itself."@en
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