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Discuss the leitmotif principle in opera and film. Explain and illustrate the operation of the leitmotif principle in nineteenth century opera, and discuss its influence and legacy on twentieth century art, especially in film music. Illustrate with exampl Essay Example

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Discuss the leitmotif principle in opera and film. Explain and illustrate the operation of the leitmotif principle in nineteenth century opera, and discuss its influence and legacy on twentieth century art, especially in film music. Illustrate with exampl

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The effective rhythmic theme and repetition is easily retained in the memories of the listeners. The approach makes it easier for the listeners to associate the themes and sound with the character who is the murderer in this context. The whistling made by the murderer helps the audience to identify and recognize him through the use of sound (Egorova, 1997).The use of a phrase, Cosi fan tutte in Wolfgang Amadeus Mozarts’s opera present a better example of allusion. The other example of application of the principle is in the Magic Marksman, a Carl Maria von Weber’s opera. Weber’s application of the leitmotif principle was purely instrumental. In one of his operas called Euryanthe, thirteen motifs were developed in the orchestra. The principle has also been brought out well in Symphonie fantastique, a type of drama that was associated with Hector Berlioz. The leitmotif principle in the opera is presented in various forms (Franklin, 1991). First as a nightmarish vision connecting her to the witches’ Sabbath and secondly, brings out the thought of the poet toward his beloved. Belioz’s idée fix however, was not considered a symphonic fabric part. Wagner’s work present rich abundant of both transformation and allusion.Transformation has also been presented in the Rhinegold. Transformation of the song about their treasure has been done .Musical allusion has been presented well in Richard Straus’s opera called Rosenkavalier. The thematic transformations presented not based on dramatic references rather than musical developments. Leitmotif principle is utilized in most of his symphonic poems. Little has been done on the extension of the principle after the demise of Wagner. Wagner is believed to have contributed majorly to the use of allusion as a leitmotif principle in most of his work. The other form of the principle, transformation had been utilized by those who came before him. Leitmotif stands for a phrase in music that keeps on recurring. The phrase is usually associated with an idea, place or person involved (Paulus, 2000). The use of leitmotif principle in film and opera dates back to the eighteen century and majorly on the ninenteen century. A musical motif has most often been defined as melodic, short musical idea, rhythmic or harmonic. Leitmotif principle in music and films can be in terms of orchestrations, harmony, rhythms or accompaniments. The principle is beneficial to the

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References

Citron, M. J. 2008. An honest contrivance’: Opera and Desire in ‘Moonstruck. Music and Letters, 89(1), 56-83.

Citron, M. J. 2004. Operatic Style and Structure in Coppolas" Godfather Trilogy". Musical Quarterly, 423-467.

Citron, M. J. 2010. When opera meets film. Cambridge University Press.

Cohen, A. J. 2001. Music as a source of emotion in film. Music and emotion: Theory and research, 249-272.

Egorova, T. K. 1997. Soviet Film Music: An Historical Survey (Vol. 13). Psychology Press.

Franklin, P. 1991. Distant sounds–Fallen music: Der ferne Klang as ‘womans opera’?. Cambridge Opera Journal, 3(02), 159-172.

Paulus, I. 2000. Williams versus Wagner or an Attempt at Linking Musical Epics. International Review of the Aesthetics and Sociology of Music, 153-184.

Powrie, P., & Stilwell.2006. Changing tunes: the use of pre-existing music in film. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd..

Van der Lek, R. A. J. 1991. Diegetic music in opera and film: a similarity between two genres of drama analysed in works by Erich Wolfgang Korngold (1897-1957). Rodopi.

Wintle, C., & Keller, H. 2004. Hans Keller: Essays on Film Music. Film Studies, 5(1), 106-131.

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preview essay on Discuss the leitmotif principle in opera and film. Explain and illustrate the operation of the leitmotif principle in nineteenth century opera, and discuss its influence and legacy on twentieth century art, especially in film music. Illustrate with exampl
  • Pages: 8 (2000 words)
  • Document Type: Essay
  • Subject: Music
  • Level: Undergraduate
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