Music History and Theory Forum

Fall 2018

Unless otherwise noted, all events take place on Wednesday from 3:30-4:45 p.m. in Music Room 1145.
Dr. Lisa Cooper Vest (Musicology, University of Southern California) 
Wednesday, November 14, 2018 | 3:30-4:45 pm | Music Room 1145 | Open to the public
When writing the libretto for his first opera, Krzysztof Penderecki turned to Aldous Huxley’s “documentary novel,” The Devils of Loudun (1952), as source material. Huxley’s lurid psychoanalytic narrative examines the encounter of two historical protagonists: Sister Jeanne of the Angels, a seventeenth-century French abbess, and Father Urbain Grandier, a priest who was executed after Jeanne accused him of afflicting her with demonic possession. Huxley and Penderecki were by no means the only artists after WWII who found themselves drawn to the Loudun tale: among other treatments were Polish author Jarosław Iwaszkiewicz’s lyrical novella (1942-6), French poststructuralist Michel de Certeau’s philosophical deconstruction (1970), and British director Ken Russell’s notoriously profane (and heavily censored) film (1971). Learn more...