Honors: All College Participants

Title

Literature Expressed Through Music: Musical Portrayals of Dante's Divine Comedy

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

Major

Music Education

Minor

N/A

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Dr. Mike D'Ambrosio

Presentation Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Description

The project Literature Expressed Through Music: Musical Portrayals of Dante’s ‘Divine Comedy’ analyzes and compares different musical settings of Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy and examines the creation of a unique composition depicting Dante’s literary ideas. This research examines how three different composers conveyed interpretations of the Divine Comedy through musical compositions. A background section outlines the history of program music and use of music to represent narratives and extra-musical ideas. A literature review of studies on Peter Ilych Tchaikovsky’s Francesca da Rimini: Symphonic Fantasy After Dante and Franz Liszt’s compositions, Après une lecture du Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata and Dante Symphony, guides a comparison of stylistic and thematic techniques employed by the composers. A stylistic and theoretical analysis of Brett Abigaña’s Symphony No. 2 – La Commedia provides a contemporary counterpart to compare with the Tchaikovsky and Liszt pieces. This analysis of expressions of Dante’s literary masterpiece provides musical ideas for creating a unique setting of the Divine Comedy. The latter part of the project consists of a composition inspired by the Divine Comedy to be performed by a small instrumental ensemble. The final product of this project consists of a literature review, an analysis and comparison of the four compositions, and an explanation of the creative process for the unique composition.

Location

Classroom 211, Waterfield Library

Start Date

November 2016

End Date

November 2016

Affiliations

Honors Thesis

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Nov 16th, 1:30 PM Nov 16th, 4:00 PM

Literature Expressed Through Music: Musical Portrayals of Dante's Divine Comedy

Classroom 211, Waterfield Library

The project Literature Expressed Through Music: Musical Portrayals of Dante’s ‘Divine Comedy’ analyzes and compares different musical settings of Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy and examines the creation of a unique composition depicting Dante’s literary ideas. This research examines how three different composers conveyed interpretations of the Divine Comedy through musical compositions. A background section outlines the history of program music and use of music to represent narratives and extra-musical ideas. A literature review of studies on Peter Ilych Tchaikovsky’s Francesca da Rimini: Symphonic Fantasy After Dante and Franz Liszt’s compositions, Après une lecture du Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata and Dante Symphony, guides a comparison of stylistic and thematic techniques employed by the composers. A stylistic and theoretical analysis of Brett Abigaña’s Symphony No. 2 – La Commedia provides a contemporary counterpart to compare with the Tchaikovsky and Liszt pieces. This analysis of expressions of Dante’s literary masterpiece provides musical ideas for creating a unique setting of the Divine Comedy. The latter part of the project consists of a composition inspired by the Divine Comedy to be performed by a small instrumental ensemble. The final product of this project consists of a literature review, an analysis and comparison of the four compositions, and an explanation of the creative process for the unique composition.