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Re-Visioning A Biblical Story Through Libretto And Music: Debora E Jaele By Ildebrando Pizzetti

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Chapter Summary

In this chapter, the author discusses an interesting and little-known twentieth century Italian opera, Debora e Jaeleby Ildebrando Pizzetti (1880-1968). She focuses on gap-filling in both the libretto and music and follows a brief literary analysis of Judges 4-5. She selected this particular opera for analysis because of the provocative nature of the drama and its unique musical values. She treats both music and librettos as midrash-creative re-telling- because they re-tell all or part of the story by creating a particular mood or feeling musically. The re-telling is in both the altered text and in the language of music. Pizzetti wrote the libretto and music of Debora e Jaele from 1917-1921. In this libretto, motivations are completely reversed. Characters perceived in the biblical account as "good" and "bad" seem to be switched.

Keywords: biblical story; Ildebrando Pizzetti; Italian opera; Judges; Libretto; midrash; music



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