During the years preceding the composition of Tristan and Isolde, Wagners aesthetics underwent a momentous turnaround, principally as a result of his discovery of Schopenhauer. Many of Schopenhauers ideas, especially those regarding musics metaphysical significance, resonated with patterns of thought that had long been central to Wagners aesthetics, and Wagner described the entry of Schopenhauer into his life as a gift from heaven. Chafe argues that Wagners Tristan and Isolde is a musical and dramatic exposition of metaphysical ideas inspired by Schopenhauer. The first part of the book covers the philosophical and literary underpinnings of the story, exploring Schopenhauers metaphysics and Gottfried van Strassburgs Tristan poem. Chafe then turns to the events in the opera, providing tonal and harmonic analyses that reinforce his interpretation of the drama. Chafe acts as an expert guide, interpreting and illustrating most important moments for his reader. Ultimately, Chafe creates a critical account of Tristan, in which the drama is shown to develop through the music.
- Publication Date:
- 19 / 08 / 2005