Music as Ironic Commentary

Sun Jul 3, 2005 10:43 am
It is very hard to pull off well so I think you only see it in the very best composers. At the end of the first act of La Traviata, Violetta sings her most famous aria about how she will always be free and daily turn to new delights and the next act opens with Alfredo telling us she has given up Paris and moved with him out to the country three months ago.

The whole plot of Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tute is based upon the ironic commentary of the music against the words. Without this irony the story does not really make much sense, or at least is not very interesting.


~ by severalfourmany on July 3, 2005.

2 Responses to “Music as Ironic Commentary”

  1. Interesting question. And whom do we credit for the use of irony, the composer or the librettist?

  2. I think it only succeeds when the composer and librettist work closely together to make it work.

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