Academic journal article The Beethoven Journal

Selected Beethoven and Beethoven-Related Books and Music Scores from 1994-1997

Academic journal article The Beethoven Journal

Selected Beethoven and Beethoven-Related Books and Music Scores from 1994-1997

Article excerpt

THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTIONS OF BOOKS AND SCORES recently acquired by the Beethoven Center are intended to aid readers in selecting new publications that appeal to their individual interests. Part I, Books for the General Reader, encompasses biographies, histories, repertory guides and other reference books, and introductory texts appropriate for the music student. Part II, Books for the Specialist, lists books with a highly analytical or philosophical focus intended for readers with substantial knowledge of music. In those cases where authors have identified their book as being for the general reader or specialist, we have accepted their categorization. Part III lists critical editions and other selected scores.

I. Books for the General Reader

IA. Books in English

Boalch, Donald H. Makers of the Harpsichord and Clavichord 1440-1840. 3rd. ed., ed. Charles Mould. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1995. xxxii, 788 pp. ISBN 0-19-318429-X. $155.

This monumental new edition of Boalch's famous dictionary is included here because of the valuable information it provides on harpsichord and clavichord builders, many of whom also made fortepianos. Each listing cites keyboard types, dates, where existing instruments are located in museums and other collections, technical descriptions, history and other remarks. Also included are geographical and chronological conspectus of makers; an index and translation of technical terms by Andreas H. Roth; genealogies of some of the family builders; a bibliography of references; and errata and addenda.

Bokina, John. Opera and Politics from Monteverdi to Henze. New Haven, Ct.: Yale Univ. Press, 1997. xiv, 240 pp. ISBN 0-300-06935-9. $28.50.

This book, by "a political theorist who loves opera," explores the political content of twelve representative operas selected from the history of the genre. Chapter Three, "Opera and Revolutionary Virtue," is devoted to Fidelia. After a brief historical introduction, the author focuses on the characters of the drama and the political opposites they represent, e.g. "self-interest and patriotism" (Rocco and Florestan), "inconstancy and fidelity" (Marzelline and Leonore), and "tyranny and the virtuous state" (Pizarro and Fernando). Includes index.

Daverio, John. Roben Schumann: Herald of a "New Poetic Age. " New York: Oxford Univ. Press, 1997. xi, 607 pp. ISBN 0-19-509180-9. $45.

As in Beethoven biography, in studies of Schumann's life and music we encounter a persistent mythology. This new biography aims to debunk some common misconceptions about the composer, such as the idea that Schumann was a successful composer of short but not long works or that his final illness is evident in some of his late music. Beethoven appeared frequently in Schumann's many critical writings on music, and his influence on Schumann as a composer and literary author is dealt with primarily in the chapter on "Music as Literature" (in a section entitled "Composing under the spell of Paganini, Bach, and Beethoven"). The author calls upon the latest research to update Schumann biography, such as Nicholas Marston's work on the Fantaisie and its connection to the fundraising efforts for the Beethoven monument in Bonn. Includes extensive bibliography and index.

Freiberg, Stanley K. Blake & Beethoven in The Tempest: A Two-Act Play With a Prologue and an Epilogue. Victoria, B.C.: Newport Bay Publishing, 1997. iv, 50 pp. ISBN 0-921513-08-9. $9-95.

A poet, playwright, and writer of fiction as well as a Blake scholar, the author here creates a fantasy, suspended in time, in which "spiritual and aesthetic companions" Beethoven and Blake meet on the island of Shakespeare's Tempest. "Through the legacy of their art [which is quoted and performed throughout the play] we see both men manifest the miracle of recovery, restoration and triumph" found in the denouement of Shakespeare's play. Thomas De Quincy and Emily Bronte join them in this journey, playing some Shakespearean and Chaucerian characters, and other literary and real-life figures enter into the drama as well. …

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