Voices from the Unknown: The Fantastic in 19th century Music Between Music Insects and Autoparodies

  • Elisabetta Fava Università degli Studi di Torino
Keywords: fantastic, music, 19th century, Mendelssohn, Verdi

Abstract

The Scherzo in Mendelssohn's Oktett (1825) is related to a part of Goethe's Faust I, the Walpurgisnachtstraum, where an orchestra of insects is playing during the witches Sabbath in fantastic ambience. The musical language uses several connotations (pianissimo, staccato, undefinited melody, quick tempo etc.) which definite the fantastic in sound realm; these connotations are very often associated to parodistic meanings, like in Die erste Walpurgisnacht (Goethe-Mendelssohn). In this respect, the insects too become usual characters in fantastic compositions; the essay tries to underline several common lines between literature and music, painting and music, fantastic and parody and explains how these elements appear in Verdi's Falstaffs and Nicolai's Lustigen Weiber insects, and how they survive in the instrumental music.

Author Biography

Elisabetta Fava, Università degli Studi di Torino

ricercatrice in Musicologia e Storia della musica

Università degli Studi di Torino - Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici

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Published
2014-05-31
How to Cite
Fava, E. (2014). Voices from the Unknown: The Fantastic in 19th century Music Between Music Insects and Autoparodies. Between, 4(7). https://doi.org/10.13125/2039-6597/1124
Section
Powers of Artistic Creation. Ideations and Crossings