Note:This thesis is part of a research project submitted in partial fulfillment of the degree of Doctor of Musical Arts in the School of Music. The project also involved the preparation and performance of a recital of music related to the thesis topic.

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Title:Music in wartime: Max Reger's final organ work, the Fantasy and Fugue in D minor, Op. 135b
Author(s):Choi, Mina
Advisor(s):Kinderman, William
Contributor(s):Robinson, Dana; Carrillo, Carlos; Mattax Moersch, Charlotte
Department / Program:School of Music
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:A.Mus.D. (doctoral)
Subject(s):Max Reger
Karl Straube
music in war
Fantasy and Fugue in D minor, Op. 135b
World War I
Abstract:From the outbreak of the war in 1914 until his death in 1916, Reger had been torn between the wave of strong patriotic sentiments felt by many, and realization of the immense tragedy brought on by the conflict. Reger, of course, died during the war and did not live to experience the grim outcome, but he still saw much of the catastrophe that had unfolded. This tension between the feeling of patriotism and the lamenting acknowledgement of tragedy is reflected in Reger’s wartime works. Reger’s patriotic response is present in his compositions from the first year of the war: Eine Vaterländische Ouvertüre (An Overture for the Fatherland), Op.140, from September 1914, and the Requiem, which dates from December of that year. Both pieces are dedicated to the German army. While turning his attention to composing “patriotic” compositions, Reger also envisioned constructing “ein neues großes Orgelwerk (a new major organ work)” in D minor, which is in the same key as his two settings of Requiem (Op. 144b and Op.145a) and Trauerode (Op.145/1) written for the dead soldiers in war. The Fantasy and Fugue in D minor, Op. 135b has received some detailed scholarly attention in relation to its collaborative editorship with Karl Straube; yet the piece deserves closer examination in connection with the complex circumstances of its composition. In particular, a series of revisions by Reger and some mysteries concerning Straube’s involvement during this time shed new light on the genesis of this work, clarifying Reger’s tensional ambivalence between cultural patriotism and the sorrowful acknowledgement of tragedy in wartime.
Issue Date:2020
Publisher:School of Music, College of Fine + Applied Arts, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Genre:Dissertation / Thesis
Rights Information:©2020 Mina Choi
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-12-01

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