MUSC 121 Literature and Music


This course, Literature and Music, will introduce the student to the great body of literature of a variety of genres, and how the literature is set to music. Students will develop abilities necessary to interpret and analyze great works of poetry, primarily. The student will focus on several qualities of the literary works, and compare and contrast these literary qualities to their corresponding musical qualities. For example, what is it about the formal scheme of a poem that dictates the form of its composition as a musical masterpiece? What is the poem’s rhyming pattern? Its tone and voice? How does one go about properly delivering this poem as a work of literature, and thus as a performance of musical art? Students will also study the classics of Shakespeare and develop their knowledge of the famous tragedies and comedies that became the librettos of celebrated operas. In this course, the literary works will be primarily in English; however, there will also be an emphasis on German romantic poetry set as Lieder (German art songs), French mélodie (French art songs), and the body of English poetry used as the texts for English art songs throughout music history.

Degree Requirements