Wozzeck

Front Cover
Cambridge University Press, 1989 - Music - 181 pages
Alban Berg's Wozzeck is one of the most significant operas of the twentieth century. Douglas Jarman's study provides a clear and accessible introduction to this work, placing it in the context of the radical developments in musical language during the early decades of the century and of the development of Berg's own musical style. The book covers all aspects of the work. Early chapters are devoted to the history and discovery of the Buchner play Woyzeck on which Berg based the libretto and to the background and composition of the opera. A detailed synopsis takes the reader through the events on stage in relation to the structured musical effects. Particular attention is given in the subsequent chapter to the unique dramatic and musical design of the opera. In offering a possible interpretation of the work Douglas Jarman considers this closely organized structure in relation to the expressionistic language of the music. A final chapter charts the performances of the opera, in particular early productions, which are illustrated with many hitherto unpublished photographs from Berg's own lifetime. An important feature of the book is the inclusion of many important and otherwise unobtainable contemporary documents concerned with the play and the opera, includine Karl Emil Franzos's description of the reconstruction of the fragmented Buchner play and three commentaries by Berg himself on the opera. This comprehensive guide will be invaluable to the student and opera-goer wishing to unravel the musical and dramatic complecities of this important work.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
The play and the libretto
7
Musical background and composition
16
Synopsis
25
The formal design
41
Act III scene 4 an analysis
52
A suggested interpretation
59
Stage history the premiere and subsequent performances
69
Alban Bergs Wozzeck
135
Alban Bergs Wozzeck A contribution to the problem of opera
139
Creating atonal opera
143
The musical forms in my opera Wozzeck
149
A word about Wozzeck
152
A lecture on Wozzeck
154
Notes
171
Bibliography
175

Documents
110
Georg Büchner
111
Wozzeck and Woyzeck
129
Alban Berg and Anton von Webern
132
Discography
177
Index
178
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