|Haendel, Georg Friedrich - "The Smiling Hours" from "Hercules" for Flute & Harp|
Haendel, Georg Friedrich (1685 - 1759)
Magatagan, Mike (1960 - )
|Editeur :||Magatagan, Mike|
|Droit d'auteur :||Public Domain|
Handel characterized this piece as a "musical drama," to be sung in the theater, but unstaged, rather than either oratorio or opera, but it has been performed as both during its history. Like many of his masterworks, such as Messiah, it was written in a short time, from mid-July to mid-August, but it shows no signs of haste. At its first performances at the King's Theater in London, it was very badly received, and many of the composer's supporters blamed this on the extra-musical vagaries of fashionable society rather than on any deficiencies in the work itself. In addition, Handel had hoped to make his music more accessible to the general public by lowering ticket prices, but this did not draw the larger audiences he had hoped for, which also contributed to his calling off further performances. He was deeply disappointed by its failure, which probably contributed to his later illness. Today it is considered one of his strongest musical-dramatic works, behind only Samson and Semele. <br> <br> The musical characterization is extremely vivid, though the male characters are rather stock types. The music for Hercules is appropriately robust and extroverted, even a bit simple-minded and pompous. Iole's is deeply tragic, as she relives the death of her father, supported by the almost weeping punctuation of the orchestra. This scene is one of the strongest of the opera, coming immediately after the lively march introducing Hercules and his chained captives, and all the more vivid for the contrast. Later her character is developed a bit more, as she expresses her refusal to consider Hyllas' proposal in firm, dignified music, or the crystalline clarity Handel uses to depict her innocence and compassion for those caught up in the tragedy of Dejanira's jealousy. It is Dejanira herself, though, who is the most three-dimensional of the characters, as we see her love, jealous anger, and final desperate remorse, expressed accordingly in melting pathos, furious runs and biting stacatto phrases, and burningly frenzied lines. Handel's mastery is made clear in the way that even when one emotion dominates, others are hinted at. For example, in her first aria, chromatic phrases alternate between more direct cadences, giving her emotions more complexity and a foreshadowing of the darker side of her love. <br> <br> Although originally written for Opera, I created this arrangement for Flute and Concert (Pedal) Harp.
|Source / Web :||MuseScore|
|Partition centrale :||Hercules (2 partitions)|