The Evocation of Charles Baudelaire’s Poetry in Six Preludes for Piano on Poems of Baudelaire by American Composer, Sheila Silver
les fleur de mal
poems of baudelaire
six preludes for piano
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThe American composer, Sheila Silver (1946- ), is a Professor Emerita of Stony Brook University, New York. Silver has written for a wide range of genres and her works continue to be performed internationally by numerous orchestras and soloists. Despite her growing fame and diverse output, there are no scholarly written materials about her compositions. The primary purpose of this study is to examine the close connection between Sheila Silver’s Six Preludes for Piano on Poems of Baudelaire and the six poems specifically chosen from the collection of Les Fleurs de mal by Charles Baudelaire. Silver stated that her compositional writing was strongly influenced by the poems, some through their form, and others through narrative or atmosphere. This study demonstrates the ways in which Silver adeptly evokes the poetry through her compositional writing in Six Preludes. Musical elements such as form, rhythm, harmony, texture, and melody employed by Silver are examined and analyzed to bring to light the profound relationships between the Six Preludes and the poetry of Charles Baudelaire. This document will provide a deeper understanding of Sheila Silver’s Six Preludes including examples of practical approaches to performance for pianists who are interested in studying and performing the work, and for those who wish to understand what these preludes might contribute to Silver’s larger compositional output.
Degree ProgramGraduate College