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 New Publications, New Music Book Publications - 18th February 2019

New Books 18th February Welcome to our latest selection of new music books. Our picks this time round include a reissue of a classic biography of Berlioz, a discussion of the dramatic works of Schubert, books on opera and its relationship to jazz in 1920s Britain, a guide to successfully staging musicals, and a dissection of the final days of EMI.

Classical Composers

James William Sobaskie & Joe Davies (editors)

This book challenges the commonly-held view that Schubert, best-known for his songs, symphonies, and chamber music, lacked comparable talent for drama. It offers a re-evaluation of his operatic works, while also demonstrating moments of dramatic innovation in his vocal and instrumental music. The author draws on a range of critical approaches, including semiotics, topic theory, literary criticism, narratology, and Schenkerian analysis, to situate Schubertian drama within its musical and cultural-historical context.

Available Format: Book

David Cairns draws on a wealth of family papers to recreate in authentic and intimate detail the provincial milieu of Berlioz's boyhood. Berlioz's desperate attempts to win his father's approval for his vocation, his struggles to establish himself on the Parisian musical scene, and his passionate pursuit of love are all brought vividly to life in this newly-reprinted edition of the first volume of Cairns's award-winning biography.

Volume 2: Servitude and Greatness (1832-1869) also available.

Available Format: Book

This book examines the social, cultural and religious significance of St Cecilia's Day in the British Isles, and explores the music and poetry that originated from them. The annual feasts are analysed in detail, and the book also considers how advances in musical culture in London were imitated in the provinces, providing a detailed discussion of the variety of Cecilian celebrations held at provincial centres throughout the British Isles.

Available Format: Book

Opera & Musicals

This book explores the interaction between opera and popular culture at a key historical moment when there was a growing imperative to categorise art forms as "highbrow," "middlebrow," or "lowbrow." In this provocative and timely study, Wilson considers how the opera debate of the 1920s continues to shape the ways in which we discuss the art form, and draws connections with present-day discussions about elitism.

Available Format: Book

This book focuses on the operatic soprano and her relationships with technology from the heyday of Romanticism to the 21st century. It pays particular attention to the soprano as 'diva', considering how her voice and allure have been created by technologies including stagecraft and lighting, journalism, the telephone, sound recording, and visual media from the painted portrait to the high-definition simulcast.

Available Format: Book

Placing a firm emphasis on good organisation and planning, Matthew White guides the reader through the various stages involved in putting on a production: from choosing the right show and creating budgets and schedules, holding auditions and taking rehearsals, culminating in the final run of performances and the after-show party. The book also explains how to deal successfully with everything from set, costume, and lighting design to ticket sales and publicity.

Available Format: Book

Exploring a wealth of historical material about singers in the late nineteenth century, Karen Henson challenges the idea that this was a period of decline for the opera singer. Instead they enjoyed a freedom and creativity based on their ability to express text, act and communicate physically, and exploit the era's media.

Available Format: Book

Popular Music

For over twenty-five years, Radiohead have been the most radical and fascinating rock band in the world. This anthology collects the best writing on this most literate of pop groups, from the earliest local reports about "On A Friday" - Radiohead's first moniker - through the inspired commentary of Mark Greif and Simon Reynolds to the trenchant profiles of Will Self, John Harris and others.

Available Format: Book

This retrospective celebrates the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, and reflects on her life, music, and legacy. Meredith Ochs explores the diva's life, from her formative years in Detroit, her singing and recording career from the 1950s, and her untimely death in 2018, to her numerous honours and causes, including her advocacy for civil rights and the arts.

Available Format: Book

Christopher Partridge & Marcus Moberg (editors)

Now available in paperback, this handbook covers the most important themes and concepts in the field of religion and popular music. Drawing on contemporary research from religious studies, theology, sociology, ethnography, and cultural studies, it comprises thirty-one essays covering genres from heavy metal, rap and hip hop to country music and film and television music.

Available Format: Book

Theory & Music Industry

Within the Classical canon there are innumerable examples of composers diverging from the "rules" of music theory. Drawing on examples from composers including Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Brahms, and more, this book seeks to take readers beyond the basics of music theory and help them to understand the inherent flexibility in the system of tonal music.

Available Format: Book

Dominating the music industry for over 100 years, by 2010 the EMI Group had reported massive pre-tax losses, and was divided up and sold in 2011. With interviews from insiders and music industry experts, Eamonn Forde pieces together the tragic end to a financial juggernaut and a cultural institution.

Available Format: Book