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The Gesualdo Hex: Music, Myth, and Memory by…
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The Gesualdo Hex: Music, Myth, and Memory (edition 2010)

by Glenn Watkins

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Member:grunin
Title:The Gesualdo Hex: Music, Myth, and Memory
Authors:Glenn Watkins
Info:W. W. Norton & Company (2010), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 384 pages
Collections:Your library
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Tags:Music, u

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The Gesualdo Hex: Music, Myth, and Memory by Glenn Watkins

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0393071022, Hardcover)

A riveting investigation of one of the most provocative musicians of the Renaissance, who continues to captivate composers, artists, and audiences today.

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 music scholars have periodically 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. 25 illustrations

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:22 -0400)

A riveting investigation of one of the most provocative musicians of the Renaissance, who continues to captivate composers, artists, and audiences today. In this vivid tale of adultery and intrigue, witchcraft and murder, Glenn Watkins explores the fascinating life of Renaissance composer Gesualdo -- a life suffused with scandal and bordering on the fantastical -- as well as the undeniable impact of his music on a host of twentieth-century musicians and artists from Stravinsky and Schnittke to Abbado and Herzog. Tracing the vitalizing force of Renaissance chromaticism to our own day, this multifaceted account weaves together the cumulative experience of some of the most vibrant musicians of the past half century. The Gesualdo Hex considers how music inevitably takes on a new guise as it is revisited by subsequent generations and how history plays with the evidence. This compelling book asks us to grapple with our understanding not only of art and the artists who create it, but also of history itself.… (more)

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W.W. Norton

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