Art Song Recital Soprano

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The performers of the Art Song Recital are currently students at Hunter College; I decided to focus on the performers whose pieces I will be analyzing. The students who performed Chanson d’amour, Op.27, No.1 by Gabriel Faure were Carol Szwei and Will Jordan. Carol Szwei was the singer and she is a mezzo soprano. Will Jordan accompanied her and played the piano. The students who performed “If Music be the Food of Love” composed by Henry Purcell were Emily Skoutelas and Diana Zorin. Emily Skoutelas was the singer and she is a soprano. Diana Zorin accompanied her and played the piano. The Art Song Recital at Hunter College consisted of twenty different art songs in English, German, French or Italian. Out of the twenty art songs I chose my favorite …show more content…
The piece was allegro and it was hard to keep up with the singer, although the piece was on the major scale but the lyrics to me sounded pretty dismal. If I could hear the piece again it should be played in minor scale to suit the lyrics better, for example “so fierce the transports are, they wound” was sung in soprano and played in major scale which implies that this is a “cheerful situation” when in fact it is not. I researched the context behind this Art Song and it is about a Duke who overdoses himself with music so he can stop loving this woman. [5] The piece began mezzo-piano and then alternated between forte, piano, mezzo-piano, and fortissimo, depending on what lyric the singer was singing, when the singer sung fortissimo my ears hurt a bit and this song would have been better if sung in mezzo-soprano or if a male sung it in tenor. I was unable to determine the beat and meter; the piece sounded like it was never ending and is through-composed form because each stanza sounded different from the previous. At first the piece was non-repeating, however later on when the singer began repeating certain phrases and alternating the key (theme variation) the art song became a complete mess to me. Maybe this coordinated with the “obsessed Duke” who was distraught with himself but I was confused because why use a woman to sing about a man’s distraught …show more content…
Both pieces deal with the concept of love and how different people react to it. These pieces definitely connected with the time period where they came from because they consist of elements that make up what we know as the Romantic Period. Although Henry Purcell’s piece “If Music be the Food of Love” was unappealing to me he however was one of the most influential composers and influenced other composers through his different pieces in different musical categories (sonatas, chamber music, operas). The purpose of the piece “If Music be the Food of Love” could be a portrait of how a person can go crazy and do foolish things because of love. The Duke (the singer) of the song drowns himself in music in order to ignore his love for a woman. In the piece “Chanson d’amour”, the singer sings about their love for certain person’s eyes, forehead, mouth, voice, etc. Gabriel Faure may have wanted to express a person’s unhealthy obsession with another person. The aesthetic of both Henry Purcell and Gabriel Faure while they wrote their pieces were probably pure emotion, awe, and unknown. During the romantic period, “thought” was pushed out of the picture and replaced with emotion, thus it became the “aesthetic” for the songs that romantic composers

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