Author Topic: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience  (Read 1890 times)

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Offline vandermolen

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #20 on: October 17, 2018, 12:34:20 PM »
And Alan Hovhaness - no.25 is his Odysseus symphony, also on YouTube.  From listening many years ago I recall quite a merry trumpet theme that recurs throughout the piece.

Yes, I like this work as well - one of my favourites by Hovhaness.
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Offline vandermolen

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #21 on: October 17, 2018, 12:36:43 PM »
Also:

"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline Mandryka

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #22 on: October 17, 2018, 01:08:25 PM »
, although others such as Aeschylus and Plato did depict them as lovers.

If you could find a reference for that I’d appreciate it. In Delecroix’s book on Achilles he suggests that they’re lovers, and I argued vehemently with a friend who was reading it at the same time as me  that this is nonsense, there’s nothing to suggest it in Homer etc.

It was fabulous going back to read the Iliad, by the way, I reread Priam meeting Achlles in his tent at the end- extraordinary humane poetry - and Achilles and Scamander, which I find as exciting now as when I first encountered it when I was at school. The Greek is too hard for me now, it always was hard for me, but now it’s painfully so, I had to use a translation.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2018, 01:14:44 PM by Mandryka »
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Online Ghost of Baron Scarpia

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #23 on: October 17, 2018, 01:25:57 PM »
Agreed, certainly not in Homer, although others such as Aeschylus and Plato did depict them as lovers.

If you could find a reference for that I’d appreciate it. In Delecroix’s book on Achilles he suggests that they’re lovers, and I argued vehemently with a friend who was reading it at the same time as me  that this is nonsense, there’s nothing to suggest it in Homer etc.

It was fabulous going back to read the Iliad, by the way, I reread Priam meeting Achlles in his tent at the end- extraordinary humane poetry - and Achilles and Scamander, which I find as exciting now as when I first encountered it when I was at school. The Greek is too hard for me now, it always was hard for me, but now it’s painfully so, I had to use a translation.

It is the ideal thing to argue, since the question can never be answered. Even in the time of Plato the identity of Homer and the origin of the epics was unknown. It's like watching the Charlston Heston movie to find out if Moses had a beard.
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Offline JBS

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #24 on: October 17, 2018, 01:28:11 PM »
If you could find a reference for that I’d appreciate it. In Delecroix’s book on Achilles he suggests that they’re lovers, and I argued vehemently with a friend who was reading it at the same time as me  that this is nonsense, there’s nothing to suggest it in Homer etc.

It was fabulous going back to read the Iliad, by the way, I reread Priam meeting Achlles in his tent at the end- extraordinary humane poetry - and Achilles and Scamander, which I find as exciting now as when I first encountered it when I was at school. The Greek is too hard for me now, it always was hard for me, but now it’s painfully so, I had to use a translation.

I think the intense friendship and Achilles's intense grief in the wake of Patroklus's death suggest to modern ears a passionate love. What they suggested to the people of Homer's era may have been totally different. Maybe warriors did bond that closely without mixing in an erotic element to the relationship. David and Yonatan in the Book of Samuel would be a good parallel, close in time and not too distant in physical space. I don't know of anyone claiming them as homosexual lovers.

Online North Star

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #25 on: October 17, 2018, 02:00:41 PM »
If you could find a reference for that I’d appreciate it. In Delecroix’s book on Achilles he suggests that they’re lovers, and I argued vehemently with a friend who was reading it at the same time as me  that this is nonsense, there’s nothing to suggest it in Homer etc.

It was fabulous going back to read the Iliad, by the way, I reread Priam meeting Achlles in his tent at the end- extraordinary humane poetry - and Achilles and Scamander, which I find as exciting now as when I first encountered it when I was at school. The Greek is too hard for me now, it always was hard for me, but now it’s painfully so, I had to use a translation.

From Plato's Symposium

Quote
Very different was the reward of the true love of Achilles towards his lover Patroclus-his lover and not his love (the notion that Patroclus was the beloved one is a foolish error into which Aeschylus has fallen, for Achilles was surely the fairer of the two, fairer also than all the other heroes; and, as Homer informs us, he was still beardless, and younger far). And greatly as the gods honour the virtue of love, still the return of love on the part of the beloved to the lover is more admired and valued and rewarded by them, for the lover is more divine; because he is inspired by God. Now Achilles was quite aware, for he had been told by his mother, that he might avoid death and return home, and live to a good old age, if he abstained from slaying Hector. Nevertheless he gave his life to revenge his friend, and dared to die, not only in his defence, but after he was dead Wherefore the gods honoured him even above Alcestis, and sent him to the Islands of the Blest. These are my reasons for affirming that Love is the eldest and noblest and mightiest of the gods; and the chiefest author and giver of virtue in life, and of happiness after death.
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Online Ghost of Baron Scarpia

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #26 on: October 17, 2018, 02:23:10 PM »
From Plato's Symposium

Even here I think it is an assumption that "love" is to be equated with with sex.
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Offline JBS

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #27 on: October 17, 2018, 04:17:27 PM »
Even here I think it is an assumption that "love" is to be equated with with sex.

I agree.  Regarding that Plato quote, we can't even be sure of how Plato would answer the question.* There is after all a reason we call nonerotic love "Platonic love".

And how Athenians of Plato's era answered the question does little to tell us how Homer's audience answered the same question.

*Actually , we might. Does anyone here have access to the Greek text of the Symposium? And if they do, can they tell us which Greek word for "love"--eros, philia, or agape--Plato used in this passage?

Offline springrite

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #28 on: October 17, 2018, 04:56:05 PM »
Ordered:

Lodewijk Mortelmans: Homerische Symphonie

Cecil Armstrong Gibbs: Symphonie "Odysseus"

Gabriel Faure: Penelope

Arthur Bliss: Morning Heroes (Eine Symphonie für Sprecher, Chor, Orchester)

Michael Tippett: King Priam  (Medium: Blu-ray Disc)

Malcolm Arnold: The Return of Odysseus op.119 für Chor & Orchester
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Offline SymphonicAddict

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #29 on: October 17, 2018, 05:34:23 PM »
And here we have an early symphony by Heinrich von Herzogenberg, Odysseus. It's not a masterpiece, it has its moments but is somewhat diffuse, albeit enjoyable at the end of the day.


Offline vandermolen

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #30 on: October 17, 2018, 10:31:18 PM »
Ordered:

Lodewijk Mortelmans: Homerische Symphonie

Cecil Armstrong Gibbs: Symphonie "Odysseus"

Gabriel Faure: Penelope

Arthur Bliss: Morning Heroes (Eine Symphonie für Sprecher, Chor, Orchester)

Michael Tippett: King Priam  (Medium: Blu-ray Disc)

Malcolm Arnold: The Return of Odysseus op.119 für Chor & Orchester

I especially like the Bliss work, his masterpiece I think, and John Westbrook's Homer narration in the EMI version is especially fine.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline Mandryka

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #31 on: October 17, 2018, 10:41:55 PM »
From Plato's Symposium

So according to Plato, Achilles was younger than Patroclus, that Patroclus was his older lover and that Achilles at the time of the Trojan war was pre-pubescent!

What is the word uses for lover and love - if I recall correctly there are special words  for sexual love.

I remember once going to a lecture by an American classical philosopher called Martha Nussbaum about Plato’s and Aristotle's attitudes towards sexuality, she argued that the atmosphere in Plato’s Academy was very gay, that all of this was too much for Aristotle, hence he upped sticks and went to set up his own, straighter, school in the Lyceum. I think she published it as a paper somewhere. I can imagine she would say that Plato was a bit inclined to prejudice the opinion that Achilles and Patroclus were in a sexual relationship.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2018, 10:49:02 PM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #32 on: October 17, 2018, 11:00:45 PM »
Ordered:

Lodewijk Mortelmans: Homerische Symphonie

Cecil Armstrong Gibbs: Symphonie "Odysseus"

Gabriel Faure: Penelope

Arthur Bliss: Morning Heroes (Eine Symphonie für Sprecher, Chor, Orchester)

Michael Tippett: King Priam  (Medium: Blu-ray Disc)

Malcolm Arnold: The Return of Odysseus op.119 für Chor & Orchester

Don’t miss out on the Monteverdi, the music that Penelope sings is fabulous, Penelope’s opening song Di Misera Regina is one of my favourite operatic things. And there’s an interesting « enhancement » of the opera to explore by Henze.
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Offline Jo498

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #33 on: October 18, 2018, 12:54:25 AM »
Achilles cannot have been pre-pubescent because on the way to Troy he begets a son, Neoptolemos (who does lots of butchery in the sack of Troy, as far as I recall). Of course, epics are hardly consistent as far as ages go (Penelope has a 20 year old son but is never understood as around 40, o.k. maybe she is 36, but nevertheless the fervor of the suitors lusting for her seems to indicate that age does not play a role here.)

I do not recall if there is a special word for war companions. But otherwise friendship is philia and love eros. eromenos (beloved, usually the younger) would be diffferent from philos.
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The morning breeze like a bugle blew
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Online Biffo

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #34 on: October 18, 2018, 01:46:45 AM »
Ordered:

Lodewijk Mortelmans: Homerische Symphonie

Cecil Armstrong Gibbs: Symphonie "Odysseus"

Gabriel Faure: Penelope

Arthur Bliss: Morning Heroes (Eine Symphonie für Sprecher, Chor, Orchester)

Michael Tippett: King Priam  (Medium: Blu-ray Disc)

Malcolm Arnold: The Return of Odysseus op.119 für Chor & Orchester

I bought the Armstrong Gibbs 'Odysseus' Symphony - possibly as part of a Dutton promotion - and now can't remember a single thing about it, good or bad. It doesn't seem to have made much of an impression. I will be interested to know what you make of it.

Online North Star

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #35 on: October 18, 2018, 01:53:32 AM »
Achilles cannot have been pre-pubescent because on the way to Troy he begets a son, Neoptolemos (who does lots of butchery in the sack of Troy, as far as I recall). Of course, epics are hardly consistent as far as ages go (Penelope has a 20 year old son but is never understood as around 40, o.k. maybe she is 36, but nevertheless the fervor of the suitors lusting for her seems to indicate that age does not play a role here.)

I do not recall if there is a special word for war companions. But otherwise friendship is philia and love eros. eromenos (beloved, usually the younger) would be diffferent from philos.
Quote
Robert Graves mentions the age of 15, citing Homer himself [The Greek Myths, Graves, 160.l], but I haven't been able to track down the exact passage—the version of the Iliad Graves was working from may have had different numbering or may have had passages that are now considered apocryphal. However, he does lead to some useful passages. In one, Phoenix says:

It was to thee that the old horseman Peleus sent me on the day when he sent thee to Agamemnon, forth from Phthia, [440] a mere child, knowing naught as yet of evil war...

Iliad, Murray, ix.438-440

What is interesting about that passage, when you go to Greek, is that Homer uses the term νήπιον ("nhay-pee-on") which not only means child, but in some cases, specifically a pre-pubescent child. (The LSJ entry from the word link makes direct reference to this passage in the Iliad.)
https://mythology.stackexchange.com/questions/1995/how-old-were-paris-and-achilles-at-the-time-of-the-trojan-war

Achilles reaching puberty and begetting a son on the voyage seems plausible, for Ancient Greek mythology at least.




Patroclus and the beardless Achilles tending to his wound.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2018, 01:55:46 AM by North Star »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #36 on: October 18, 2018, 03:27:05 AM »
Achilles cannot have been pre-pubescent because on the way to Troy he begets a son, Neoptolemos (who does lots of butchery in the sack of Troy, as far as I recall). Of course, epics are hardly consistent as far as ages go (Penelope has a 20 year old son but is never understood as around 40, o.k. maybe she is 36, but nevertheless the fervor of the suitors lusting for her seems to indicate that age does not play a role here.)

I do not recall if there is a special word for war companions. But otherwise friendship is philia and love eros. eromenos (beloved, usually the younger) would be diffferent from philos.

Eromenos was the word I was trying to remember this morning, eromenos and erastes.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2018, 03:31:18 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline springrite

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #37 on: October 23, 2018, 05:11:36 PM »
Claudio Monteverdi: Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria (DVD, with Baker, etc.)
(Eine Produktion der Glyndebourne Opera, Regie: Peter Hall)
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Offline Jo498

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #38 on: October 24, 2018, 12:06:51 AM »
Not musical, but there is an interesting series of lectures (unfortunately the pictures are often pretty lame or out of sync with the lecture, although this is a bonus if one mainly listens) on Troy, covering both literature and archaeology

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GGBmVqvhGYw&index=1&list=PL4pSZ5yOhlInrgikHT5_VSdk-Fm-pM2Dv
Struck by the sounds before the sun,
I knew the night had gone.
The morning breeze like a bugle blew
Against the drums of dawn.
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Offline Dax

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Re: The Iliad and The Odyssey --- a musical experience
« Reply #39 on: October 26, 2018, 03:06:24 AM »
Dealing with particularities -

Szymanowski’s Metopes for piano - the movements are L’ile des sirenes, Calypso and Nausicaa.