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The Music of Richard Wagner

Lu par : Robert Greenberg
Durée : 18 h et 50 min
4 out of 5 stars (2 notations)

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Description

In these 24 lectures filled with musical excerpts, enjoy a rich and multifaceted exploration of the trailblazing works and outsized life of this historically pivotal composer.

Your immersion in Wagner's art includes the following:

  • The Flying Dutchman (which illustrates several of Wagner's key compositional innovations)
  • Tannhäuser (the saga of a medieval knight torn between two worlds)
  • Tristan and Isolde (Wagner's crowning masterpiece)
  • And, of course, The Ring of the Nibelung (arguably the single most ambitious theater work ever created)

The sheer outlandishness of Wagner's life makes for an endlessly intriguing story, from his desperate escapades outrunning creditors to his obsessive personal relationships to his utopian artistic schemes. In his writings, letters, and public actions, you investigate the often contradictory - and hypocritical - aspects of his personality. And, reflecting on the nationalist spirit of his time, you track his core desire to make "German Art in the service of a German national identity," even as he created a body of works whose communicative power transcends any national boundary.

With Professor Greenberg's passionate and razor-sharp commentary, you'll plumb the fabulous mystery of a man who gave the world something of deeply compelling and universal resonance: music of great genius and a poetry that reveals the depths of the human psyche.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2010 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2010 The Great Courses

Ce que les auditeurs disent de The Music of Richard Wagner

Notations
Global
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Interprétation
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Histoire
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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Acteon
  • 14/10/2013

Wonderful

Where does The Music of Richard Wagner rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Among the best.

What other book might you compare The Music of Richard Wagner to and why?

This is more extensive than most of Greenberg's introductions to great composers. I generally find that the longer the course, the better it is.

Have you listened to any of Professor Robert Greenberg’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I have listened to a great many. This is among the best. Not that it has no flaws (yes, there is a lot of recounting of plots; and Prof.Greenberg's pronunciation of German and French words leaves much to be desired), but Prof. Greenberg speaks with such verve and insight that his presentation of Wagner is both exhilarating and educational.

Any additional comments?

I am not exactly a novice in classical music or in opera (I have seen many of the Wagner operas in German opera houses as well as in Paris), but this audiobook extended and deepened my knowledge and understanding of both the music and the man, and it did so in a most enjoyable and stimulating manner.

I might add that those who are unfamiliar with Greenberg might be put off, as I initially was, by his brash way of speaking and his mispronunciation of foreign words (surprising considering his cultivation and his composer's musical ear). It would be a great shame however to let these keep one away! In time, I began to find his mannerisms more endearing than disturbing — to my own benefit for I have gained much through listening to his lectures.

20 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Harold Wise
  • 14/12/2016

Engaging and interesting storytelling!

Where does The Music of Richard Wagner rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This was really a great listen! Richard Wagner is a super interesting character that everyone should learn about.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Music of Richard Wagner?

When I realised that the opera "Der Ring Des Nibellung" has similar themes to the "the Lord of the Rings" novel by JRR Tolkien. I didn't know that such stories existed in German mythology. It was a revelation!

What does Professor Robert Greenberg bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Robert Greenberg brings energy, enthusiasm, knowledge, humour and wit. It was a pleasure to listen to!

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Mostly laugh!

4 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

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  • Pablo
  • 05/04/2015

excellent, as usual

the courses taught by Prof. Greenberg are always extremely interesting, well paced, well researched and very entertaining.

4 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

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  • wbiro
  • 12/03/2019

I Enjoyed the Subject and Presentation

My first foray into Wagner. I've listened to a lot of Greenberg already, and I can count on his enthusiasm.

2 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
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  • JW
  • 01/05/2019

Nibelung revenge against Wagner

This Nibelung, aka failed composer and professor Greenberg, cannot hide his contempt and jealousy for the greatest artist of all time. Not a minute goes by without a snarky, whining, slimy attack on Wagner’s personality, motivations, or creative works. The author endeavors to bring any honorable or noble expression of Wagner down into the gutter. It must be hard for Greenberg and his people to understand that true artists are motivated by more than selfishly collecting as many gold coins as possible. One can easily imagine that Greenberg’s main motivation for this series, other than increasing his gold pile, is to undermine the greatness of Wagner to avenge something Wagner must have said. Maybe Wagner wrote some essay about incapable musicians like Greenberg that hit a raw nerve?

1 personne a trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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Image de profile pour Alcairha
  • Alcairha
  • 12/04/2018

Fabulous balanced review of Wagner and his works

Excellent, detailed review of all of Richard Wagner’s works and his life with samples of his music, explanations of the music themes and leitmotifs, and a balanced, well thought-out discussion of his horrendous racism and anti-semitism. Highly recommended!

1 personne a trouvé cela utile

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Timoteo
  • 07/03/2018

Outstanding course of lectures

I once read a review of a course by Professor Greenberg indicating that he could make reading a grocery list interesting. This is especially true in the video version but is also true here in the purely audio version. Dr. Greenberg fully appreciates Wagner but does not shy away from finding fault in him. For example, Dr. Greenberg is highly critical of Parsifal, finding the opera to be an embodiment of racial views of Wagner, who was an antisemite and German nationalist. Wagner was a genuis composer but a bad person (he also had some sort of compulsive spending disorder). Each of Wagner's major operas is discussed, always with musical excerpts, the sound quality of which is variable because they are old and live recordings. This is one of my all time favourite courses by The Great Courses.

1 personne a trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ann H.
  • 18/07/2017

The Music of Richard Wagner

The lectures are very entertaining and informative. My only complaint is that the music excerpts did not play loud enough on my iPhone. Perhaps that would not be a problem if I could listen through a speaker. The spoken parts of the lectures were plenty loud, though.

1 personne a trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • babylon baroque
  • 18/10/2018

Cynicism and Wagner

I’m not sure why Robert Greenberg , who obviously loves Wagner’s musical genius yet possesses such a cynical sarcastic opinion of this complicated , frustrating and yet exhilarating genius felt compelled to host this particular lecture series .
Greenberg’s incessant snarky and sarcastic asides might satisfy and delight a great many listener but this Wagnerite found them exhausting, tedious and ultimately unhelpful.
I do think Greenberg is well informed yet his populist sarcasm left me feeling impoverished and disappointed in this lecture series .

4 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Chris Reich
  • 07/09/2013

Missed Opportunity

I have purchased other courses presented by Herr Professor Greenberg and enjoyed them very much. Years ago I actually became very interested in opera through his course on opera appreciation. Having become particularly interested in Wagner's operas I was thrilled to see this course appear in Audible. Disappointment followed.

In his basic introduction to opera course, Greenberg makes periodic corny jokes but they do not detract from the content. This course, however, could be sold by the bushel for the amount of corn. Does he want us to take the subject seriously? Then why the juvenile jokes every 90 seconds? The music excerpts are a pleasant break from Greenberg's stand-up comedy.

Okay, Wagner is a big, tough subject and a little levity can break things up. Agreed. But this constant wisecracking really detracts from the depth of the subject. The girls singing while they spin in a scene from The Flying Dutchman reminds Greenberg of a Nike sweatshop? Please.

A little study of Wagner will lead you to a very complex man and a great artist. His themes are not cut and dry. Pure love doesn't always trump lust. Greed isn't always defeated by altruism. Even the gods are flawed in Wagner's great Ring Cycle. Wagner goes beyond what we would call the predictable plots of today. Bad guy gets killed, Good guy dies by some ironic error. No, Wagner twists around the plots with deep complexity---his characters are torn between choices of heaven and hell with neither choice being clear.

It's a shame to dilute this great art with silly jokes.

2 stars because there is a lot of content of value if you can ignore the childish cracks.

Finally, every one of these stand-up sessions begins and ends with canned applause. Why? If there is a "live" audience, why aren't they laughing at every joke? Maybe they didn't find it funny either? Why not add a laugh track? If we are to yuck it up for 19 hours, give us a laugh track.

If you want to learn about Wagner, get the operas on DVD and enjoy them. Pick up a biography and read it. For a much lighter experience, grab a six pack and settle in to this audio series. Greenberg will bring the corn. I cannot recommend it.

19 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Norjen
  • 31/12/2019

Wagner - abject antisemite and genial composer

With only a bit of exaggeration: After having listened to Prof. Greenbergs analysis of " Der Ring des Nibelungen" and "Parzival" every time you will purchase a ticket for a Wagner opera you will feel like casting a vote for the Nazis. Prof. Greenbergs emphasis in this course lays on historical context and literal interpretation of the operas content. I missed an in depth analysis of the composition (like in his lectures on Bach) but as this was clearly not the concept of the author I distain from subtracting any points. By the way: I found on Youtube a Chinese production of Rheingold you want to watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9d-3nqzKTKU

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  • Ralph Reilly
  • 21/04/2018

Fantastic fun.

Wonderfully informative, amusing, entertaining. An absolute bargain. I'll be reading and listening to more Greenberg. You'll be a Wagner expert after this. Impress your friends!

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymus
  • 13/02/2018

Wagner American style, but truly great Wagner

Wagner "entzaubert".
gut gemacht vom Erzähler.
etwas mehr Musik wäre schön gewesen.
Wagner's Geschichten sind aus der Zeit geboren.
Wagner's Musik schöpft aus dem göttlichen Brunnen der Kunst