Frank Martin's Musical Reflections On Death (Dimension and Diversity: Studies in 20th-Century Music)

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9781576471944: Frank Martin's Musical Reflections On Death (Dimension and Diversity: Studies in 20th-Century Music)
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Frank Martin (1890-1974) , the greatest Swiss composer besides Arthur Honegger, spent two periods of his life intensely reflecting on death: the decade centered in World War II and the half-decade before his own passing at the age of 84. The resulting nine compositions are internationally recognized as featuring among Martin's masterpieces. In terms of their spiritual approach, they each address the subject of death from a different angle. Far from morbid or dejected in his attitude, Martin uses his very expressive musical language to ponder the many ways in which humans seek to understand the finitude of their earthly lives. In mid-life, Martin ponders death as a longed-for repose after a long life of fatal passion and anxieties in the chamber oratorio Le Vin herbé (1938), as a fulfillment of a brief moment of glory in the orchestral song cycle Der Cornet (1942-43), as the judge of personal conscience in Sechs Monologe aus Jedermann (1943-44), as a power exhausted after a terrible war in the armistice oratorio In terra pax (1944), and as a human boundary spiritually overcome in the oratorio Golgotha (1945-48). By contrast, Compositions from the last years of the composer's life show death met with sinister wittiness in the Poèmes de la mort after François Villon (1970-71), accepted with serenity in his Requiem (1971-72), awaited in faith in Polyptyque, his violin concerto for Yehudi Menuhin (1973), and finally welcomed with a victorious spirit in the chamber cantata "Et la vie lemporta" (1974).

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About the Author:

Siglind Bruhn is a musicologist, concert pianist, and interdisciplinary scholar whose research focuses on compositions of the 20th century. Prior to coming to the United States, she taught for ten years in Germany and at the University of Hong Kong. Since 1993 she has been a full-time researcher at the University of Michigan’s Institute for the Humanities (one of six “Life Research Associates”); in the fall of 2004, she was appointed chercheur permanent at the Institut d’Esthétique des Arts Contemporains at Université de Paris 1–La Sorbonne. She has been an elected member of the European Academy of Arts and Sciences since 2001.

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Frank Martin's Musical Reflections on Death
Siglind Bruhn
Pendragon
PO Box 190
Hillsdale, NY 12529
9781576471944, $42.00,

Death is something we all face, and such, is a highly unifying topic. "Frank Martin's Musical Reflections on Death" traces the history behind the work of Frank Martin, who created nine internationally renown compositions of music, each reflecting on death in their own unique way, centered both in World War II and when he was facing his own mortality. "Frank Martin's Musical Reflections on Death" is a study of one renowned musician's approaches on death and how you can take many approaches to this all encompassing subject. --The Midwest Book Review

Frank Martin's musical reflections on death.
Bruhn, Siglind.
(Dimension & diversity; studies in 20th-century music; no.11)
Pendragon Press, c2011
978-1-57647-194-4 ML410 $42.00 (pa)
Following the sudden death of his wife of septicemia and the coinciding outbreak of the Second World War, Swiss composer Frank Martin (1890-1974) embarked on a ten-year period in which he penned oratorios and other vocal compositions reflecting on death. He would go on to revisit this theme as he approached the end of his own life. According to musicologist Bruhn (Institute for the Humanities, U. of Michigan), each composition reflected a different attitude, with the compositions of the WWII period dealing with death as the price for a long life of fatal passion, as a fulfillment of a brief moment of glory, as the judge of personal conscience, as a power exhausted after a terrible war, or as a human boundary spiritually overcome and those of the later period treating death as a matter of sinister wittiness, serenity, faith, or victorious spirit. She elaborates on how Martin articulated these themes both through the music and through the words of the compositions. --Book News, Inc

Frank Martin's musical reflections on death.
Bruhn, Siglind.
(Dimension & diversity; studies in 20th-century music; no.11)
Pendragon Press, c2011
978-1-57647-194-4 ML410 $42.00 (pa)
Following the sudden death of his wife of septicemia and the coinciding outbreak of the Second World War, Swiss composer Frank Martin (1890-1974) embarked on a ten-year period in which he penned oratorios and other vocal compositions reflecting on death. He would go on to revisit this theme as he approached the end of his own life. According to musicologist Bruhn (Institute for the Humanities, U. of Michigan), each composition reflected a different attitude, with the compositions of the WWII period dealing with death as the price for a long life of fatal passion, as a fulfillment of a brief moment of glory, as the judge of personal conscience, as a power exhausted after a terrible war, or as a human boundary spiritually overcome and those of the later period treating death as a matter of sinister wittiness, serenity, faith, or victorious spirit. She elaborates on how Martin articulated these themes both through the music and through the words of the compositions. --Book News, Inc

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