Our Enemy, Wagner

Or else our ally, as Odysseus was.

The thing I love about this article is that it provides an easy link to the particular piece of music being discussed at each instance. Read what he thinks, and then hear it; and then decide for yourself.

But listen to this, too, before you decide.


Eric Blair said...

Too academic. That actually ruins the music, no matter what it is.

And unfortanely, I can't listen to Tannhauser without thinking of Bugs Bunny.

Eric Blair said...

"What's Opera, Doc?"


Grim said...

There's nothing wrong with thinking of Bugs Bunny. :)

Texan99 said...

I'm with you, Eric -- I can't even see the name "Tannhauser" without thinking "Weturn, my wuv, a wonging burns deep inside me. . . ."

Gringo said...

Better to listen to music than to read about some pontificating about it. Which did not stop me from recently purchasing Pops, Terry Teachout's biography of Louis Armstrong. Money quote:

Richard Brrokhiser tells of how, when doing battle with cancer, he was unable to listen to any music other than the Goldberg Variations and Louis armstrong: " Bach said everything is in its place; Armstrong said the sun comes shining through." p 379

Say no more.

douglas said...

I found it interesting that one of his complaints about Wagner was that it made the music almost too coherent for people, because Wagner builds the opera around you, instead of opening the curtain to reveal to you the opera already complete. This after defending atonal music. Methinks he is a bit too comfortably ensconced in his elite ivory tower.

Also, having just gone to see "The Flying Dutchman" last week, I can say that the intro parts where the themes are being built up can be a bit boring, but the latter parts do seem to move more quickly as a result of the ease of comprehension of the latter parts. That said, I can't say I'm a big fan of Wagner.