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Subject: Re: The most influential opera to impact our own time is:
From: donald kane <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:donald kane <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 25 Jan 2018 19:17:23 -0500
Content-Type:text/plain
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text/plain (158 lines)


I, personally, never had any problem of any sort with T&I; it was the first
opera,
at age 17, I ever bought a ticket to.  You're the one who wants to rewrite
musical
history, so I'll just wait to see what happens after HAMILTON.

dtmk.

On Thu, Jan 25, 2018 at 3:58 PM, James Camner <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> You like to sneer at musicologists, so enlighten me, please. In what way
> is Tristan
> und Isolde revolutionary? What are these new "building materials"? (I
> suppose you
> could scramble to some old music guide and quote one of those
> musicologists you
> despise for platitudes about Tristan, but what do YOU have to say about
> it?) How is
> it really different, except in style, for instance, than Gluck's Armide?
>
> And regarding those supposed new "building materials" who subsequently used
> them? What are the successors to Tristan und Isolde that are made up of
> them?
>
> In reality, Tristan und Isolde was not a "revolution" and had no
> imitations or
> successors, because who could do it?  Not Verdi, not Strauss, not even
> Puccini
> (after Cherubini, the only Italian composer who was an orchestral master to
> contend with the sophistication of the Germans) Wagner built a glorious
> mountain
> and it virtually stands alone. Tristan was an end not a beginning. No
> wonder the
> German "modernists"* who derailed traditional opera as a box office
> commodity
> turned away from melody. After Tristan, they gave up and though it is
> unfortunate
> (although the considerable benefit was the driving of melodically inclined
> composers like Steiner and Korngold to Hollywood), it is understandable.
>
> James Camner
>
>  *"Modernism" I hate this hoary  term that is today anachronistically used
> for the
> work of academic composers who plague us today with their unceasing
> recycled
> imitations of those rejected "modernist" works of the past.
>
>
> On Thu, 25 Jan 2018 15:12:31 -0500, donald kane <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>
> >Musicologists are the ones responsible for that narrative.  TRISTAN
> >UND ISOLDE was a revolutionary composition for its time.  It was
> >like introducing to architects building materials they had never used
> >before, or to doctors, drugs that had never been tested.  It has little
> >to do with what opera-goers hear; all they had to do was get used to it.
> >And I totally reject the notion that Wagner's music, as music, ever had
> >anything to do with dragons.
> >
> >dtmk
> >
> >On Thu, Jan 25, 2018 at 1:32 PM, James Camner <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> >
> >> Except in the (IMHO faux Wagner) music by John Williams and perhaps some
> >> others, where is Wagner's musical influence felt today in modern popular
> >> culture?
> >> Where is this road you mention and who is travelling it?
> >>
> >> If Wagner is influencing modern culture today it's through his
> >> storytelling in the
> >> realm of imitative pop stories like The Lord of the Rings, The Game of
> >> Thrones and
> >> even in Video Games, its fun to imagine how he would have operated in
> the
> >> video
> >> field. Wagner's Ring is one of the fountainheads of the world of Fantasy
> >> entertainment for sure (the story, his dragon, not the music). But where
> >> did Tristan
> >> lead?
> >>
> >> Sorry to say, but I doubt many under 40 people, who aren't in the
> >> classical music
> >> business, know anything about Tristan und Isolde or would even recognize
> >> the title
> >> and for such a famous work, such a titanic and incomparably gorgeous
> >> masterwork,
> >> it is remarkably scarce in live performances these days. How many
> >> subsequent
> >> works carried on or imitated Tristan und Isolde? Maybe that deadly box
> >> office
> >> poison bore Pelleas et Melisande? (Talk about a road to nowhere).
> >>
> >> We are a long way from the days when major writers like Bernard Shaw and
> >> Willa
> >> Cather passionately wrote about Wagner and operas like Tristan und
> Isolde.
> >>
> >> What are the traditional operas that really matter to the general public
> >> today? I
> >> would suggest that even La Boheme is rapidly losing its once iron clad
> box
> >> office
> >> appeal.  Perhaps in the end, the lone survivor will be Carmen.
> >>
> >> James Camner
> >>
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