A fresh look at the career of Nadia Boulanger, among the most influential musical figures of the entire twentieth century.
Exploring the ideas of consensus, resistance and rupture, this book contributes an important and nuanced reflection to the current debate on modernism in music.
This volume explores the way in which composers, performers, and critics shaped individual and collective identities in music from Europe and the United States from the 1860s to the 1950s. Selected essays and articles engage with works and their reception by Richard Wagner, Georges Bizet (in an American incarnation), Lili and Nadia Boulanger, William Grant Still, and Aaron Copland, and with performers such as Wanda Landowska and even Marilyn Monroe. Ranging in context from the opera house through the concert hall to the salon, and from establishment cultures to counter-cultural products, the main focus is how music permits new ways of considering issues of nationality, class, race, and gender. These essays - three presented for the first time in English translation - reflect the work in both musical and cultural studies of a distinguished scholar whose international career spans the Atlantic and beyond.
Author: Léonie Rosenstiel
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
A detailed, authoritative portrait of a commanding figure in twentieth-century music.
Nadia and Lili Boulanger
Author: Dr Caroline Potter
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.
Pioneers in their fields and two of the best-known women in music in the twentieth century, Nadia and Lili Boulanger have previously been considered in isolation from one another. Yet, as Caroline Potter's new book demonstrates, their careers were closely linked during Lili Boulanger's short life (1893-1918) and there are several intriguing connections between their musical works. This biography also provides the first full analysis of the Boulanger sisters' musical styles, placing them within the context of French musical history. Their lives are also a case study in the issues of gender which surround music making even to the present day. Despite an unusually privileged upbringing, Nadia and Lili Boulanger exemplify the struggle women experienced when attempting to enter the professional music world. Lili became the first woman to win the Prix de Rome in 1913, and Nadia gained second place in 1908. Yet in spite of this initial success, Nadia Boulanger was to give up composing in her thirties and devoted the remainder of her long life to teaching. Her pupils included several of the great composers of the century, including Aaron Copland and Elliott Carter. This book, focusing on their musical careers, is essential reading for anyone interested in French music of the twentieth century.
Author: Kimberly A. Francis
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
In 1929 Nadia Boulanger accepted Igor Stravinsky's younger son, Soulima, as her student. Within two years, Stravinsky and Boulanger merged their artistic spheres, each influencing and enhancing the cultural work of the other until the composer's death in 1971. Teaching Stravinsky tells Boulanger's story of the ever-changing nature of her fractious relationship with Stravinksy. Author Kimberly A. Francis explores how Boulanger's own professional activity during the turbulent twentieth-century intersected with her efforts on behalf of Stravinsky, and how this facilitated her own influential conversations with the composer about his works while also drawing her into close contact with his family. Through the theoretical lens of Bourdieu, and drawing upon over one thousand pages of letters and scores, many published here for the first time, Francis examines the extent to which Boulanger played a foundational role in defining, defending, and ultimately consecrating Stravinsky's canonical identity. She considers how the quotidian events in the lives of these two icons of modernism informed both their art and their professional decisions, and convincingly argues for a reevaluation of the influence of women on cultural production during the twentieth century. At once a story of one woman's vibrant friendship with an iconic modernist composer, and a case study in how gendered polemics informed professional negotiations of the artistic-political fields of the twentieth-century, Teaching Stravinsky sheds new light not only on how Boulanger taught Stravinsky, but also how, in doing so, she managed to influence the course of modernism itself.
Training the Composer
Author: Barrett Ashley Johnson
Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
While many teachers of music composition have influenced both the aesthetic and eventual success of their students, few have equaled the contributions of Arnold Schoenberg and Nadia Boulanger in the twentieth-century. A larger volume of a more comprehensive collection including all music composition teachers of the era would serve a certain purpose. However, the unique aspect of the current text examines, in detail, and herein presented for the first time in print, many of the teaching materials and approaches of these two famed musicians. Selection of these two teachers for comparison was made owing to the musical position so famously attributed to each: Schoenberg’s predilection to the German School; Boulanger’s favoritism to the French/Stravinsky aesthetic. In making the case for both Schoenberg and Boulanger, the Author has chosen two differing philosophies of music education practice of the late twentieth-century and early twenty-first century: those of Bennett Reimer and David Elliott. The Author examines the materials and methods of each Schoenberg and Boulanger in light of each Reimer’s and Elliott’s case for music education philosophy. Among the subjects discussed: the nature of musical creativity, the process and methods of teaching creativity/music, and the teacher/student dynamic, to name a few. In closing, the Author has presented his own suggestions for teachers, or would-be teachers, of music composition in a seven-step process leading to an effective pedagogy of the subject.
To Play Again
Author: Carol Rosenberger
Publisher: She Writes Press
At age twenty-one, while she was working with the legendary Nadia Boulanger in France, concert pianist Carol Rosenberger was stricken with paralytic polio—a condition that knocked out the very muscles she needed in order to play. But Rosenberger refused to give up. Over the next ten years, against all medical advice, she struggled to rebuild her technique and regain her life as a musician—and went on to not only play again, but to receive critical acclaim for her performances and recordings. Beautifully written and deeply inspiring, To Play Again is Rosenberger’s chronicle of making possible the seemingly impossible: overcoming career-ending hardships to perform again.
In the late sixteenth century, the French royal court was mobile. To distinguish itself from the rest of society, it depended more on its cultural practices and attitudes than on the royal and aristocratic palaces it inhabited. Using courtly song-or the air de cour-as a window, Jeanice Brooks offers an unprecedented look into the culture of this itinerant institution. Brooks concentrates on a period in which the court's importance in projecting the symbolic centrality of monarchy was growing rapidly and considers the role of the air in defining patronage hierarchies at court and in enhancing courtly visions of masculine and feminine virtue. Her study illuminates the court's relationship to the world beyond its own confines, represented first by Italy, then by the countryside. In addition to the 40 editions of airs de cour printed between 1559 and 1589, Brooks draws on memoirs, literary works, and iconographic evidence to present a rounded vision of French Renaissance culture. The first book-length examination of the history of air de cour, this work also sheds important new light on a formative moment in French history.
Author: Graham Johnson
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.
The career of Gabriel Fauré as a composer of songs for voice and piano traverses six decades (1862-1921); almost the whole history of French mélodie is contained within these parameters. In this book, the distinguished accompanist and song scholar Graham Johnson places the vocal music within twin contexts: Fauré's own life story, and the parallel lives of his many poets. Each of Fauré's 109 songs receives a separate commentary. Additional chapters for the student singer and serious music-lover discuss interpretation and performance in both aesthetical and practical terms and Richard Stokes provides parallel English translations of the original French texts.
New York Times Bestseller "Reads the way Mr. Glass's compositions sound at their best: propulsive, with a surreptitious emotional undertow." —Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim, New York Times Philip Glass has, almost single-handedly, crafted the dominant sound of late-twentieth-century classical music. Yet in Words Without Music, his critically acclaimed memoir, he creates an entirely new and unexpected voice, that of a born storyteller and an acutely insightful chronicler, whose behind-the-scenes recollections allow readers to experience those moments of creative fusion when life so magically merged with art. From his childhood in Baltimore to his student days in Chicago and at Juilliard, to his first journey to Paris and a life-changing trip to India, Glass movingly recalls his early mentors, while reconstructing the places that helped shape his creative consciousness. Whether describing working as an unlicensed plumber in gritty 1970s New York or composing Satyagraha, Glass breaks across genres and re-creates, here in words, the thrill that results from artistic creation. Words Without Music ultimately affirms the power of music to change the world.
Author: Peter Hill, Nigel Simeone
Publisher: Yale University Press
This is the first book to explore the world that Messiaen was at pains to keep hidden. It has been made possible by the unprecedented access to Messiaen's private archive granted to the authors by the composer's widow, Yvonne Loriod-Messiaen. The archive includes musical sketches, correspondence, lecture notes, diaries, as well as hundreds of photographs, many of which are published here for the first time. Using this remarkable material, Hill and Simeone trace the origins of many of Messiaen's greatest works, and place them in the context of his life, from his years at the Paris Conservatoire, his passionate first marriage to Claire Delbos, through to the immense achievements of his final decades."--Jacket.
Author: James E. Frazier
Publisher: University Rochester Press
A new, deeply researched biography of the great French organist, who composed some of the best-loved works in the organ repertory -- and the masterful Requiem.