Date of Award

Spring 5-11-2018

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)

Department

Music

Committee Chair

Maryann Kyle

Committee Chair Department

Music

Committee Member 2

Douglas Rust

Committee Member 2 Department

Music

Committee Member 3

Susan Ruggiero

Committee Member 3 Department

Music

Committee Member 4

Jonathan Yarrington

Committee Member 4 Department

Music

Committee Member 5

Christopher Goertzen

Committee Member 5 Department

Music

Abstract

Orphean mythology continues to fascinate musical and literary scholars to this day. The thematic elements originally presented in the Greek myth of Orpheus and Euridice continue to be written about and studied, and this interest in antiquity plays a critical role in solidifying the myth’s importance and value to today’s musical and literary scenes. Dove’s L’altra Euridice presents the traditional Orphean mythology, but in a radically altered account of the transpiring events, reversing Orpheus’ and Plutone’s roles as hero and villain. Dove wrote two seemingly divergent ethea, which causes elements of the emotional content within the narrative are lost if the vocalist adheres strictly to the written material. This juxtaposition presents a unique opportunity for the vocalist to either remain with the written ethos, or to mimic the gestures and articulations of the orchestra, thereby uniting the two ethea and enhancing the communicative content of the piece.

First, I introduced Dove’s importance in the current classical music canon, and specifically mentioned his contribution to and reputation within the operatic community. I then followed by establishing the historical importance of the librettist, Italo Calvino, thereby providing a foundation for why L’altra Euridice is worth further consideration. I examined each movement in the larger work according to the text, specifically identifying the ethos and apparent emotional elements in both the vocal and orchestral content, and offered subsequent unification options for the vocalist to employ. I used established terminology and techniques to instruct the vocalist as to what interpretive options were available, and defined these terms for those who would not be as familiar with them.

When these techniques and interpretive options are used discerningly, the communicative content of the vocal line within each movement can be altered to be more congruent with the orchestral content, or can be adhered to as it is written, and be justified as important without alteration. These interpretive options provide a way to more fully communicate the mythology in this unique retelling, and offer an important outlet for technical and expressive exploration and discovery for the performer.

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