© Theater Bonn, Lohengrin, Thilo Beu 2019


26. May 2024
26. May 2024
WS Scotland - David Trippett: Wagner’s Melodies,Bellini’s Sinnlichkeit
‘Wagner’s Melodies,Bellini’s Sinnlichkeit’.
This talk focusses on Wagner’s relation to Italy and Italian culture, and sets out from the myth that (unlike Rossini) Wagner was unable to compose true melody, despite placing this at the centre of his ideal for expression in Opera and Drama. In particular, I will discuss a little-known insertion aria Wagner composed for Norma, comparing its musical ideas with Bellini’s original, and placing this in the context of musical freedoms that could extend across national outlooks. Arising from this, the talk considers the wider influence of Italianità on Wagner’s concept of sensuality (Sinnlichkeit), and it places this in the context of debates that continue to this day about Wagner’s cultural identity, asking why national categories of Italian / German continue to provoke divergent responses from scholars.

Professor David Trippett
David Trippett is Professor of Music at the University of Cambridge, and a Fellow at Christ’s College. His research focuses on nineteenth-century intellectual history, Richard Wagner, and music’s role within the History of Science. He is author of Wagner’s Melodies (2013), editor and translator of Carl Stumpf, The Origins of Music (2012), and co-edited both Nineteenth-Century Opera and the Scientific Imagination (2019) and The Cambridge Companion to Music in Digital Culture (2019). Between 2015-2020 he was Principal Investigator for an European Research Council project on ‘Sound and Materialism in the Nineteenth Century,’ and in 2018 he published the first edition of Liszt’s unfinished opera, Sardanapalo. His research awards include the Alfred Einstein and Lewis Lockwood Prizes (American Musicological Society), and the Bruno Nettl Prize (Society for Ethnomusicology). Most recently, his edited volume Wagner in Context is forthcoming with Cambridge University Press.

To book:
Talks are delivered over Zoom from 6.30-8.30 pm, and all bookings must be made via Eventbrite via the links provided for each talk. A link to join the Zoom meeting will be sent prior to the talk to all current ticket holders.

To find out more and make a booking, please visit the society's website: https://www.wagnerscotland.net

Zoom: £5 for non-members, free for members. Free for students.
Student membership of the Society is free.