Song & self : a singer's reflections on music and performance /

Publication Type:



University of Chicago Press,, Chicago, Illinois, UnitedStates, p.xviii, 110 pages, 4 unnumbered pages of plates : (2023)

Call Number:



(OCoLC)fst00888702, (OCoLC)fst00939609, (OCoLC)fst01168379, bisacsh, Death in music., Europe, fast, Gender identity in music., History and criticism., MUSIC / History & Criticism., Political aspects, Vocal music, Vocal music.


Includes bibliographical references and index.Blurring identities: gender in performance -- Hidden histories: ventriloquism and identity in Ravel's Chansons madécasses -- "These fragments have I shored against my ruins" : meditations on death."In this collection of three essays, internationally renowned tenor Ian Bostridge explores his relation to the performance of Western classical vocal music through the lens of gender, politics, or the ultimate paradoxical grounding of identity, death. As a performer who needs to negotiate between his own identity and that of the musical text he delivers on stage or in the concert hall, Bostridge asks questions about how the complex identity of a piece of music was creatively configured by composers at particular historical moments, and how today's performers can embody that complexity for their audiences. In lucid and compelling prose, Bostridge guides his readers through an exploration of the fluidity of gender roles in music by Monteverdi, Schumann, and Britten, the questioning of colonial power and hierarchy in Ravel's Songs of Madagascar, and Britten's reckoning with death in works from the War Requiem to his final opera, Death in Venice. As readers become privy to Bostridge's lines of inquiry into the music he performs, they are also primed for the searching intensity of his interpretations, in which the uncanny melding of song and self brings about moments of epiphany for both the singer and his audience"--