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The Rise of Lyricism and the Decline of Biblical Narration in the Late Liturgical Passions of Georg Philipp Telemann

Grant, Jason Benjamin (2005) The Rise of Lyricism and the Decline of Biblical Narration in the Late Liturgical Passions of Georg Philipp Telemann. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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My dissertation focuses on the rise of lyricism and the decline of biblical narration in the late liturgical Passions by Georg Philipp Telemann (1681-1767). During his forty-six-year career as the Cantor of the Johanneum (St. John's School) and Director musices (director of music) of Hamburg's five main churches, Telemann composed a total of forty-six liturgical Passions. Although based on the traditional biblical narration and chorales which made these works suitable for liturgical use, the Passions also contain poetic interpolations drawn from the operatic and oratorio traditions. These poetic and narrative procedures changed significantly over the years, some of the most important of which took place during the last decade or so of Telemann's life. It has been claimed that these changes are linked to developments in the non-liturgical Passions and other oratorios, intended for concert performances, which Telemann cultivated between 1755 and 1765. I test the extent to which the lyric and narrative processes of the liturgical Passions are dependent on their non-liturgical counterparts. I also argue that these processes, especially in the late works, developed independently within the repertory of liturgical Passions themselves.The dissertation begins with an overview of Telemann's Hamburg career and the several vocal repertories he cultivated there, followed by a discussion of the liturgical Passions themselves, which I divide into three main groups: early (1722-36), middle (1737-54), and late (1755-67). The study continues with detailed discussions of lyric content and narrative reprocessing in the late Passions, including case studies of the 1764 St. Luke and 1765 St. John Passions. My conclusions take up the broader implications of Telemann's lyric and narrative procedures, including reception issues and the overall development of the liturgical Passion in Hamburg.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Grant, Jason
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairFranklin, Don Odof@pitt.eduDOF
Committee MemberBrodbeck,
Committee MemberSavoia, Francesca Lsavoia@pitt.eduSAVOIA
Committee MemberLewis, Mary Slsm@pitt.eduLSM
Date: 3 June 2005
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 11 April 2005
Approval Date: 3 June 2005
Submission Date: 22 April 2005
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Music
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: concert oratorio; Der Messias; Der Tod Jesu; Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock; Hamburg; Johannespassion 1765; Karl Wilhelm Ramler; Lukaspassion 1748; Lukaspassion 1764; lyric reportage; narrative reprocessing; structural lyricism
Other ID:, etd-04222005-050811
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:40
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:41


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