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Title:The performance of accompanied recitative in Italian opera according to the conducting method of Ilya Musin
Author(s):Pavlov, Sergei V.
Director of Research:Stoltzfus, Fred
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Stoltzfus, Fred
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Kinderman, William A.; Taylor, Stephen A.; Haymon-Coleman, Cynthia
Department / Program:Music
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Ilya Musin
opera recitative
accompanied recitative
Italian Opera
conducting techniques
Abstract:For several centuries opera composers have made significant use of recitatives in their works. For conductors and singers, recitatives pose significant challenges, many arising because musical notation for recitatives is necessarily incomplete. Conductors must make important interpretive choices and they require sound conducting techniques to implement their interpretive decisions. This study presents solutions to the specific problems that conductors and singers face when performing accompanied Italian opera recitatives from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. As a foundation for the study, the first chapter presents a translation of the technical conducting ideas of a master Russian conductor, Ilya Musin (1904-1999). Musin’s book, The Technique of Conducting, is perhaps the only study ever to consider in great detail the specific techniques best suited for conducting opera recitative. The second chapter surveys the evolution of Italian-style recitatives through the eighteenth century, discussing interpretive options and proposing ways to approach them. This exposition leads to a detailed study of a particular recitative from Le Nozze di Figaro by Mozart, showing how Musin’s techniques can help bring the recitative alive. Two further chapters carry the story of recitative’s evolution through the next century, leading to a similar detailed consideration of an important recitative from Verdi’s Rigoletto. As a whole, the study helps fill a significant gap in the conducting literature by exploring in detail, particularly for inexperienced opera conductors, the challenges, dangers, and opportunities posed by recitatives and by making available in English, and showing the value of, Ilya Musin’s specific conducting techniques.
Issue Date:2011-08-26
Rights Information:Copyright 2011 Sergei V. Pavlov
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-08-26
Date Deposited:2011-08

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