Tuesday, June 27, 2006

(Un)Musical Nightmare

I knew I should have completed the entire work that night, or rather, early morning (given the fact that it was after midnight). I woke up after just an hour after entering dreamland, with my whole mind occupied with my most futile attempts to resolve that famous Tristan chord, with a physical effect of rendering me breathless. I sure I felt like I didn't breathe at all for the entire hour of sleep.

I had gone through the first act a couple of times earlier in the day in bits and pieces but I guess it was the final and most brain-cell-sapping attempt to dissect the first act alone just minutes before I go to bed which resulted in such a bad sleep. I spent the rest of the early morning listening to just the second act and thinking about the masterpiece, at least just the first two acts and depriving myself of the resolution of the chord at the end of the work a while longer.

Mark my words in the previous entry, when I described the harmonies and rhythms as "almost vulgar", not vulgar, for he has managed to express such passionate emotions in the least obscene manner. The profundity of the work can be heard and felt in just the first act, where the text itself shows forth an apparent enraged riposte between Tristan and Isolde, but the music hints at a deep and complicated romantic relationship between the lovers. Just done in the most masterful manner by Wagner.

Despite my wonder and admiration for Wagner's brilliance, do not mistake me for a supporter of Wagner's strong anti-semitic personality. Like what Solti, a Hungarian Jew, had mentioned, politics doesn't exist in the first four measures of Tristan und Isolde when he hears or conducts the work. It's just amazing how music can transcend such physical boundaries and affect the hearts of people in just the same way.

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