A second session can be added to “Music as a Mirror” that continues the discussion through the 19th century. This session focuses on the increasingly middle-class-oriented, self-expressive age of Romanticism. Such societal trends as individualism, nationalism, the back-to-nature movement, and the Romantic fascination with the strange and bizarre are discussed and illustrated with their musical analogs.
Other topics discussed include the rise of display virtuosity, the concept of the composer/creator as “God” and the performer as “Hero”, and a comparison of the careers of Franz Liszt and Wilt Chamberlain. Music heard and discussed includes works by Hector Berlioz, Niccolo Paganini, Franz Liszt, Bedrich Smetana, Johannes Brahms and Gustav Mahler.
GOALS: to gain an understanding that the large-scale issues and events that shape any society – politics, economics, and religion – determine and shape the “sound” of the music consumed by that society.
Session length: 75 – 90 minutes