Richard Strauss's "Elektra"

Richard Strauss's "Elektra"

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"Elektra" was the fourth of 15 operas by Richard Strauss and marks the start of his successful partnership with the librettist Hugo von Hofmannsthal. It is one of the major operas of the early 20th century and established Strauss as one of the leading German composers of his day. This study examines the musical-historical context of "Elektra" and also provides an analysis of its musical features. Bryan Gilliam establishes a chronology of the evaluation of the opera and places it in the larger framework of German opera as a whole. Also discussed are such topics as the dramaturgy of the work and the cuts Strauss made in Hofmannsthal's text, the critical respose just after its premiere. A large part focuses on the music, in particular the tonal structure. Finally, Gilliam analyzes the final scene from various perspectives drawn from the preceding chapters.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 283 pages
  • 130 x 210 x 25.4mm | 510g
  • Clarendon Press
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 4 plates, figures, music examples, tables, bibliography
  • 0193132141
  • 9780193132146

Table of contents

Context and critical reception; from play to libretto; "Elektra" - chronology; "Elektra" - summary of tonal structure; the annotated "Elektra" libretto - Strauss's preliminary musical thought; the "Elektra" sketches; the final scene - genesis and structure. Appendices: "Elektra" chronicle; sketchbook inventories.
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