Thursday, December 1, 2011

Ongoing Discussion [December 2011]

We've been looking at Hugo a lot during the past month, and we will continue to do so during the coming weeks. However,  I didn't want to allow A Dangerous Method to pass without some scrutiny. I spent the better part of last spring preparing Of Rings and Myths -- and have, in fact, been working through a few self-imposed revisions just this last month -- so Wagner has been very much on my mind this year. I knew Shore was working on Dangerous Method at the same time but, other than the Idyll, I didn't know which bits of Wagner would be quoted in the score. When I finally heard the album, I was happily encouraged by just how many common selections we'd made in terms of the motifs.

I'm not sure how many Wagnerians there are on the blog ... though Timdalf certainly fits the bill! Anyway, I thought it might be fun to pick through the motifs that appear in the score. I found the use of the Wagner in this score to be quite clever, since it's often well digested into Shore's writing. For example, the album's first track ("Burghölzli") would appear to begin with an appropriately re-formed setting of Wagner's motif for Mime's obsession.

Some of the Wagner quotes seem to relate to the spirit of Wagner's drama while others relate to the undercurrent and meaning behind the leitmotifs; they're not all simple answers.

So please, have a go at it! And by all means, invite your favorite open-minded Wagner scholars to stop by and contribute. I'm anxious to see what you all pick out!

I'm currently working on a bit of research that's one part related to Hugo, one part inspired by Hugo. I'll talk about that more when the next installment of Clock Work runs. As I've noted on the boards, I'm remaining tight-lipped on all things (well, most things) Hobbit-related until 2012, but when speed picks up on that front, expect it to pick up quickly.

Back soon with more Clock Work.


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