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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: September ::
Re: Music
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1638  Friday, 1 September 2000.

[1]     From:   Fran Teague <
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        Date:   Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 11:33:02 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1633 Music

[2]     From:   Clinton Atchley <
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        Date:   Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 11:50:49 -0500
        Subj:   RE: SHK 11.1633 Music

[3]     From:   Jacob Goldberg <
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        Date:   Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 13:47:50 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1633 Music

[4]     From:   David Lindley <
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        Date:   Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 18:44:30 GMT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1633 Music

[5]     From:   Paul E. Doniger <
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        Date:   Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 14:36:24 -0700
        Subj:   Fw: SHK 11.1633 Music

[6]     From:   Stephan B. Paragon <
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        Date:   Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 19:47:23 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.1633 Music

[7]     From:   Ward Elliott <
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        Date:   Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 17:09:45 -0700
        Subj:   RE: SHK 11.1633 Music


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Fran Teague <
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Date:           Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 11:33:02 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: 11.1633 Music
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1633 Music

The question about Shakespeare and music is one that is quite easy to
answer with a bit of effort; one need only employ a concordance. This
query sounds perilously close to those from high school students who
want the list to provide them with help on homework. I do realize that
Mr. Adelman is not a high school student, but can't help thinking he
ought to do his own homework. But perhaps I am unkind.

Fran Teague <http://www.arches.uga.edu/~fteague>

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Clinton Atchley <
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Date:           Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 11:50:49 -0500
Subject: 11.1633 Music
Comment:        RE: SHK 11.1633 Music

Ken,

I've always enjoyed Lorenzo's description of the music of the spheres
and the harmony in the soul in MV 5.1.54-65.

Clint

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jacob Goldberg <
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Date:           Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 13:47:50 EDT
Subject: 11.1633 Music
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1633 Music

Merchant of Venice (of all places!), Act 5, Scene 1

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Lindley <
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Date:           Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 18:44:30 GMT
Subject: 11.1633 Music
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1633 Music

On 'beauty and power' the locus classicus for a Neo-Platonic view of
music is Merchant of Venice, 5.1.50-87  (Though note, as many do not,
that this is followed by Portia's observation 'How many things by season
seasoned are / To their right praise and true perfection'. Her
suggestion that it is the time, the place and the listener who confer
the harmony.)

Though there are many places one can point to in the plays where music
seems to have this Neo-Platonic capability to harmonise the souls of
those who hear it - the music that in Lear 4.6 (Quarto only) wakes him,
or in Pericles Scene 13 awakes Thaisa to name but two - the plays in
general seem to me to present a rather more sceptical view of music as
self-indulgence (Twelfth Night 1.1), as an image of political
manipulation (Hamlet 3.2.316-341 or Tempest 1.2. 84-5).  He uses the
musical form of the 'catch' or round to suggest subversive companionship
(Feste, Belch and Aguecheek in TN; Caliban Stephano and Trinculo in
Temp.).  Finally, in perhaps the other most quoted speech on music,
Caliban's 'The isle is full of noises' (Tmp. 3.2.130-8)  music's
richness is as of a dream.

David Lindley

[5]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Paul E. Doniger <
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Date:           Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 14:36:24 -0700
Subject: 11.1633 Music
Comment:        Fw: SHK 11.1633 Music

The two first references that come to mind are the opening lines of
_Twelfth Night_ (not to mention all the songs and comments upon them!),
and the big monologue from the final act of _Richard II_. I seem to
recall a line from Act 5 of _The Merchant of Venice_ about the man who
hath no music in him, or something to that effect. Romeo compares
"lover's tongues" to soft music (2.2), and (also in _R & J_) Peter's
exchange with the musicians might be useful. I don't know of any
comments upon the teaching of music, however -- unless you would
consider Hamlet's attempt to get Guildenstern to play upon the recorders
as an aborted music lesson.

Good luck in your search,
Paul E. Doniger
The Gilbert School

[6]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Stephan B. Paragon <
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Date:           Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 19:47:23 EDT
Subject: 11.1633 Music
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.1633 Music

Henry the 8th. (Orpheus).

[7]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ward Elliott <
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Date:           Thursday, 31 Aug 2000 17:09:45 -0700
Subject: 11.1633 Music
Comment:        RE: SHK 11.1633 Music

How about this passage between Lorenzo and Jessica in The Merchant of
Venice (5.01.54-109), liberally invoked in Vaughn Williams' Serenade to
Music?

How sweet the moonlight sleeps upon this bank!
Here will we sit, and let the sounds of music
Creep in our ears.  Soft stillness and the night
Become the touches of sweet harmony.
Sit, Jessica.  Look how the floor of heaven
Is thick inlaid with patens of bright gold.
There's not the smallest orb which thou behold'st
But in his motion like an angel sings,
Still quiring to the young-ey'd cherubins;
Such harmony is in immortal souls,
But whilst this muddy vesture of decay
Doth grossly close it in, we cannot hear it.
<Enter MUSICIANS.>
Come ho, and wake Diana with a hymn,
With sweetest touches pierce your mistress' ear,
And draw her home with music.          <Play Music.>
<Jes.> I am never merry when I hear sweet music.
<Lor.> The reason is, your spirits are attentive;
For do but note a wild and wanton herd
Or race of youthful and unhandled colts,
Fetching mad bounds, bellowing and neighing loud,
Which is the hot condition of their blood,
If they but hear perchance a trumpet sound,
Or any air of music touch their ears,
You shall perceive them make a mutual stand,
Their savage eyes turn'd to a modest gaze,
By the sweet power of music; therefore the poet
Did feign that Orpheus drew trees, stones, and floods;
Since nought so stockish, hard, and full of rage,
But music for the time doth change his nature.
The man that hath no music in himself,
Nor is not moved with concord of sweet sounds,
Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils;
The motions of his spirit are dull as night,
And his affections dark as Erebus.
Let no such man be trusted.  Mark the music.
<Enter PORTIA and NERISSA. >
. . .
<Por.> Music, hark!
<Ner.> It is your music, madam, of the house.
<Por.> Nothing is good, I see, without respect;
Methinks it sounds much sweeter than by day.
<Ner.> Silence bestows that virtue on it, madam.
<Por.> The crow doth sing as sweetly as the lark
When neither is attended; and I think
The nightingale, if she should sing by day
When every goose is cackling, would be thought
No better a musician than the wren.
How many things by season season'd are
To their right praise and true perfection!
peace ho! the Moon sleeps with Endymion,
       And would not be awak'd.

Ward Elliott
 

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