Oedipus's Requiem: Verdi's Voice in Stravinsky

McKay, Nicholas (2002) Oedipus's Requiem: Verdi's Voice in Stravinsky. In: Della Seta, F, Montemorra Marvin, R and Marcia, M (eds.) Historiae Musicae Cultores - Biblioteca. Leo S. Olschki, pp. 411-441. ISBN 8822251962

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This paper was originally presented for the Verdi 2001 commemorative international conference held in Parma and New York. It was written under the brief of papers addressing 'ways in which Verdi's music had been used since his death'. Curiously, of all of Stravinsky's many allusive gestures (and explicit quotations) referencing other composers, the voice of Verdi (the ultimate emblem of nineteenth-century, romantic melodrama against which Stravinsky's music had so pointedly reacted) was the most prolific. The very limited literature on Stravinsky's numerous Verdi references had, however, somewhat naively and conservatively accounted for this in traditional terms of 'reverential homage'. These accounts were often underpinned with Stravinsky's vocal use of Verdi as a Wagner-foil and a lifelong love of Verdi that grew from the early influence of his father's many Verdi performances on the St. Petersburg stage. This article, however, goes further in advocating that Verdi's music was used precisely for its 'other-voiced' quality in a reading of these references as musical metaphors that trope heightened meanings onto Stravinsky's music and drama through an interpretative framework borrowed from Mikhail Bakhtin's literary theory of double-voicing. A semiotic theoretical framework is thus constructed on Peirce's tripartite division of the sign that reads these musical references to Verdi as 'Icons' working at the levels of 'images', 'diagrams' and 'metaphors' in Stravinsky's music.

Item Type: Book Section
Additional Information: Verdi 2001: Atti del convegno internazionale di studi, Parma, New York, New Haven, 24 gennaio-1 febbraio 2001
Schools and Departments: School of Media, Film and Music > Music
Depositing User: Nicholas McKay
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 20:26
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2012 21:56
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/25951
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