Dr. Vladimir L. Marchenkov, Professor of Aesthetics and Theory at the School of Interdisciplinary Arts at Ohio University will be speaking on “Magic, Fable, and Opera: Monteverdi and the Quest for Immortality” at the World Literature Colloquium on Wednesday, November 5, 6:00pm – 7:30pm in Guilford 323.
A remarkable milestone in the history of the myth about Orpheus and Eurydice, Claudio Monteverdi and Alessandro Striggio’s 1607 favola in musica L’Orfeo was the product of two definitive Renaissance cultural currents: humanism and magic. Both were fuelled by fascination with ancient myth, albeit in very different keys. While humanism cultivated myth as allegory, magicians dreamed of harnessing music’s hidden powers for their own ends. L’Orfeo registered both these trends, and blended them together in a groundbreaking artistic statement, laying the foundation of both modern opera and the modern artistic Orphism. The continuing vitality of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth owes much to the modern idea of conquest of nature that culminates in triumph over death as nature’s ultimate limit to man’s omnipotence. Marchenkov will conclude his presentation with a performance of his recent composition, “To Night,” from a song cycle based on the Orphic Hymns (2nd century A.D.).
Sponsored by the Department of Classics.