Noah im kalten Krieg: Igor Strawinsky’s Musical Play “The Flood.” by Hannah Dübgen
Author(s)Pollock, Emily R
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Noah im kalten Krieg: Igor Straw insky’s Musical Play “The Flood.” By Hannah Dübgen. (Musiksoziologie, no. 17.) Kassel: Bärenreiter, 2012. [131 p. ISBN 9783761822654. €29.95.] Music examples, facsimiles, bibliography. Noah im kalten Krieg presents a variety of interpretations and insights regarding a single work: Igor Stravinsky’s The Flood, composed for a CBS television broadcast in 1962. Each of Hannah Dübgen’s eight chapters approaches the piece from a different angle, marshaling evidence from source material, music analysis, secondary sources, and published statements by Stravinsky (with Robert Craft), to sketch a series of narratives about how the work might be understood. The introduction poses the question, “Why did Stravinsky compose a work of music theater on the subject of the story of Noah’s Ark at the beginning of the 1960’s in America?” (p. 13). Dübgen’s title gives a clue to her answer: the Cold War is the overarching interpretive reference point, specifically referring to the connection between the biblical cataclysm presented in The Flood and the fear of the atomic bomb (as she quotes Stravinsky, “The Flood is also The Bomb” [p. 12]). Dübgen argues that the story ought to best be considered allegorically, and that the allegory in question is no mere moral abstraction, but is really a kind of contemporary analogy. The best moments of the book are those that tie back to this allegory by integrating a discussion of modern musical techniques with questions of theology and dramatic tradition.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Humanities. Music and Theater Arts Section
Johns Hopkins University Press
Pollock, Emily Richmond. “Noah Im Kalten Krieg: Igor Strawinsky’s Musical Play ‘The Flood.’ by Hannah Dübgen.” Notes 70, 3 (March 2014): 429–431 © 2013 Music Library Association, Inc
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