Dr. John Thompson will present his Doctoral Lecture Recital on
Huntington, Ind.— Dr. John Thompson, instructor in music at Huntington College, will give a performance of his Doctoral Lecture Recital, “Aspects of Realism in Musorgsky’s Songs and Dances of Death.” The performance will begin at 7:30 p.m., on Friday, September 19, 2003, in the Merillat Centre for the Arts auditorium. The public is cordially invited to attend. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for students and seniors. Contact the Merillat Centre Box Office at (260) 359-4261 to reserve tickets.
Songs and Dances of Death was written by Nineteenth-century Russian composer, Modest Musorgsky. Born of the pathos of a history of oppression, this cycle of four songs speaks of the agony, despair and gentle hope of death in the Nineteenth-century Russian spirit. Thompson presented this Lecture Recital at the University of Memphis in April in final fulfillment to graduate with the Doctor of Musical Arts degree.
“Modest Musorgsky, most famous for such works as A Night on Bald Mountain, Pictures at an Exhibition, and the opera Boris Godunov, is often viewed by scholars as being a realist composer, and many of his songs as being realist songs,” said Thompson. “The problem is, however, that Musorgsky never actually referred to himself as being a realist, or to his songs, and specifically the Songs and Dances of Death, as being realist songs. I propose to show that the four songs of the Songs and Dances of Death contain aspects of realism – the depiction of Russian peasants, and the declamatory or syllabic manner in which they are composed – that justify the cycle bearing the label of realism.”
Tony Silva, who will present a Lecture Recital, “The Use and Development of Motives in the Liszt B Minor Sonata” will serve at Thompson’s pianist. Silva’s Lecture Recital will take place on Wednesday, September 17, in the Longaker Recital Hall at 4:30 p.m.
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