Tag Archives: Musical Analysis

Wagner’s Boundaries (The Null Set)

The London Review of Books features in its 11 April 2013 issue a musing by Nicholas Spice titled “Is Wagner bad for us?”  The breadth of Spice’s inquiries prohibits useful capsulization here, but an early passage of the article is so trenchant that I hoped readers would find it stimulating.  The question posed was “about […]

Works of Music Made Visible

It is only by the most indirect link to the Meister that I can possibly justify this post, but those who follow its link will not regret it, I am sure. We are of course aware of Wagner’s self-imposed challenge to make visible on the stage the action of music.  Many have remarked that it was […]

Parsifal: Musical DNA

A subscriber writes: Since its premiere in 1882, countless thousands of words have been written about the meaning of Wagner’s most challenging work, Parsifal. The text has been scrutinized and analyzed by devotees and detractors alike. These discussions are nearly always fascinating, often confusing, and occasionally ill-informed, and to their number I am certainly unequal […]

Tristan in the Score of Meistersinger

Meistersinger appears on its face to be a paean to German art, expressed in a tribute to German musical heritage.  And most pronounced in that heritage is the mastery of counterpoint and of well-tempered tuning. So the great work begins in C-major, ends in C-major, and features passages of fugal writing (such as the Act II riot) […]