Great works: Stravinsky's Les Noces

Course Dates: 19/07/23
Time: 10:30 - 12:30
Location: Keeley Street
Why is Stravinsky's Les Noces still considered such an important work a century after its first performance by the Ballets Russes in Paris in June 1923? Come and discover how this work was conceived and created, and its impact on music and dance in the 20th century.
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Full fee £29.00 Senior fee £29.00 Concession £29.00

Course Code: MD701C

Wed, day, 19 Jul - 19 Jul '23

Duration: 1 session

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What is the course about?

We explore the compositional and performance history of Stravinsky's ballet Les Noces (also known as The Wedding or Svadebka). You will explore its long musical evolution, choreography, set and costume designs, and its place in the development of music and dance in the 20th century.

What will we cover?

- Stravinsky's relationship with Serge Diaghilev and his Ballets Russes
- Stravinsky's libretto for the ballet and the dramatic scenario
- the evolution of the instrumentation through several different versions, including examination of sketches from the Paul Sacher Stiftung in Basel
- merging of Russian and neoclassical elements of Stravinsky's musical language
- Bronislava Nijinska's choreography and Natalia Goncharova's set and costume designs
- the impact of Les Noces in the 20th century.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- recognise the essential characteristics of Stravinsky's musical language and style by the early 1920s
- understand Les Noces in the context of Stravinsky's output and the history of Diaghilev's Ballets Russes
- know how the work was conceived and executed by composer, choreographer and designer
- situate the work in the wider context of 20th century music and dance.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

The course in intended to be accessible for anyone with an interest in Western classical music. We may look at short notated examples but you do not need to read music notation to understand the patterns in the music. All texts will be in English or accompanied by an English translation. We will listen to examples from representative works.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

Tutor presentation and explanation, musical examples (notated and audio-visual), class discussion and Q&A.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

All resources will be provided online, and available via Google Classroom for you explore further after the session.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

Read our blog to find out more about City Lit's Music history courses in London and online. This lists our full programme of classes ordered by term, and by day of the week, and searchable by tutor name and keywords. You may then click on each title to read the full course outline.

Trish Shaw

Trish trained as a violinist, singer and historical musicologist, with a specialism in music since 1900. She has worked variously as a university and college lecturer, choral conductor and arranger, and orchestral violinist, and has taught a wide range of subjects including choral singing and conducting, composition techniques, music theory, analysis and musicianship, music history, violin and chamber music. She has published and presented at conferences on French music (especially Ravel), and Australian music and cultural history. At City Lit, Trish currently teaches Choir at Lunchtime and Composition techniques, and supports Orchestra workshop. Her interests in the arts also include contemporary theatre, dance and visual arts.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.