Composing for the State: Music in Twentieth-Century Dictatorships (Hardback) book cover

Composing for the State

Music in Twentieth-Century Dictatorships

Edited by Esteban Buch, Igor Contreras Zubillaga, Manuel Deniz Silva

© 2016 – Routledge

234 pages

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Description

Under the dictatorships of the twentieth century, music never ceased to sound. Even when they did not impose aesthetic standards, these regimes tended to favour certain kinds of art music such as occasional works for commemorations or celebrations, symphonic poems, cantatas and choral settings. In the same way, composers who were more or less ideologically close to the regime wrote pieces of music on their own initiative, which amounted to a support of the political order.

This book presents ten studies focusing on music inspired and promoted by regimes such as Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, France under Vichy, the USSR and its satellites, Franco's Spain, Salazar's Portugal, Maoist China, and Latin-American dictatorships. By discussing the musical works themselves, whether they were conceived as ways to provide "music for the people", to personally honour the dictator, or to participate in State commemorations of glorious historical events, the book examines the relationship between the composers and the State.

This important volume, therefore, addresses theoretical issues long neglected by both musicologists and historians: What is the relationship between art music and propaganda? How did composers participate in musical life under the control of an authoritarian State? What was specifically political in the works produced in these contexts? How did audiences react to them? Can we speak confidently about "State music"? In this way, Composing for the State: Music in Twentieth Century Dictatorships is an essential contribution to our understanding of musical cultures of the twentieth century, as well as the symbolic policies of dictatorial regimes.

Reviews

'Ten fascinating narratives are presented here about the function of state music in a wider range of twentieth-century dictatorships. An international roster of distinguished authors ensures the most detailed study of this subject thus far. This unique volume clarifies how music was used to present the public face of state sanctioned propaganda.' - Patricia Hall, University of Michigan, USA

'These essays, surveying musical works that span five decades and three continents, shed light on creations generally overlooked by virtue of their being "tainted"� because they were commissioned by dictatorships. Instead of shunning these works, the essays explore the complex interactions of the state, the composers, and the public and offer new paths toward dissecting notions of creative autonomy in the twentieth century.' - Pamela Potter, University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA

Table of Contents

Esteban Buch, Igor Contreras Zubillaga and Manuel Deniz Silva – ‘State Music’ and Dictatorship: an Introduction

Part 1: Music for the People

1. Yannick Simon Music and the Vichy Regime through Jeune France’s Three Joan-of-Arc Productions (1941)

2. Analía Chernavsky The ‘Dança da Terra' Issue’ (1943): Heitor Villa-Lobos and the Vargas Dictatorship

3. Hon-lun Yang Unravelling The East Is Red (1964): Socialist Music and Politics in the People’s Republic of China

Part 2: Composing for the Dictator

4. Katherine L. FitzGibbon (Lewis&Clark College, Portland) – Gottfried Müller’s Deutsches Heldenrequiem (1934): Nazi Ideology Cloaked in Historic Style

5. Justine Comtois Alfredo Casella’s Il deserto tentato (1937): an Opera Dedicated to Benito Mussolini

6. Marina Frolova-Walker A Birthday Present for Stalin: Shostakovich’s Song of the Forests (1949)

7. Andrzej Tuchowski ‘State music’ in Poland under the Stalinist Regime: Alfred Gradstein’s Cantata A Word about Stalin (1951)

Part 3: State Commemorations

8. Manuel Deniz Silva Salazar’s dictatorship and the paradoxes of State music: Luís Freitas Branco’s ill-fated Solemn Overture 1640 (1939)

9. Igor Contreras Zubillaga El Concierto de la Paz (1964): Three Commissions to Celebrate 25 Years of Francoism

10. Esteban Buch Conquistadores, Indians,and Argentine Generals: Iubilum op. 51, a Commission to Alberto Ginastera (1980).

Index

 

 

About the Editors

Esteban Buch is directeur d’études (full professor) at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris, France. A specialist of the relationships between music and politics in the twentieth century, he is the author of O juremos con gloria morir (2013), L’Affaire Bomarzo (2011), Le cas Schoenberg (2006), La Neuvième de Beethoven (1999; English tr. 2003) and Histoire d’un secret (1994). He has also co-edited Du politique en analyse musicale (2014), Tangos cultos (2012), Réévaluer l’art moderne et les avant-gardes (2010), and La Grande guerre des musiciens (2009).

Igor Contreras Zubillaga is a PhD candidate at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales of Paris, France, with a thesis on the Spanish musical avant-garde during Franco's dictatorship. He is co-editor of the volumes Le son des rouages: Representations des rapports homme-machine dans la musique du 20e siècle (2011) and A l'avant-garde! Art et politique dans les années 1960 et 1970 (2013).

Manuel Deniz Silva is Research Fellow at the FCSH (Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal), where he coordinates the Music and Media� thematic strand of the INET-md (Music and Dance Research Centre). He is co-editor of the Portuguese Journal of Musicology and editor of Kinethophone - Journal of Music, Sound and Moving Image.

About the Series

Musical Cultures of the Twentieth Century

Musical Cultures of the Twentieth Century

Series Advisory Board: Robert Adlington, Esteban Buch, Mark Delaere, Giovanni Giurati, Wolfgang Rathert

The series Musical Cultures of the Twentieth Century adopts a collaborative model for the study of key issues in twentieth-century music. The basis for each volume is a conference drawing together leading scholars from across Europe and beyond; conference themes are determined by the series’ distinguished international advisory board, with a view to developing new knowledge and understanding that reflects dialogue between scholars of different nationalities and theoretical backgrounds. Particular emphasis is placed upon recognition of the multiplicity of conceptions, artefacts, events and communities which characterised musical life in the last century. Accordingly, individual volumes seek to interrogate themes that encompass diverse musical genres and disciplinary perspectives.

The series was conceived as a project of the Institute of Music of the Giorgio Cini Foundation, Venice, where many of the conferences are convened.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
MUS015000
MUSIC / Ethnomusicology
MUS020000
MUSIC / History & Criticism