PHILHARMONICA. International Music JournalReference:
Russian “King Lear” of the 21st century: cultural traditions and innovations in the opera by Sergey Slonimsky
Abstract: The research subject is the new Sergey Slonimsky’s opera “King Lear” (2001) based on Shakespeare’s tragedy. It is the first opera in modern Russian musical theatre, which is based on the old genre dramma per musica. The author of the paper studies the score and premiere plays in Moscow and St. Petersburg to analyze the cultural senses of the creative concept. The author reveals the peculiarities of performing the concept of Shakespeare’s tragedy in drama and the music style of the opera, analyzes the characters’ features and their interpretation by the performer in premiere plays. The author uses the methodology of culturological study, complex and interdisciplinary approaches, methods of historical-comparative analysis, culturological and musicological interpretation. The scientific novelty of the study consists in the fact that it is the first study, which gives profound and comprehensive theoretical and culturological analysis of the new opera “King Lear” by the patriarch of Russian music culture Sergey Slonimsky. It contains the characteristics of premiere plays of 2016 and their artistic evaluation. On the basis of Slonimsky’s work the author concludes about impressive innovation of Russian opera of the 21st century, composer’s reliance on the traditions of the Shakespearean drama theatre and music theatre of the 16th – the 17th centuries, rich in innovations of the 21st century, which smoothly synthesize the features of elite and mass culture.
Keywords: music of the 21st century , opera drama, innovations, dramma per musica, folklore , mass culture , elite culture, Shakespeare's tragedy, modern opera, Sergey Slonimsky
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