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Symbolic structures and elements in the opera Fervaal of Vincent d'Indy

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Since very early days a comparison has been made in musicological literature between d'Indy's first grand opera Fervaal (premiered in 1897) and Richard Wagner's Parsifal (in 1882). The comparison has been founded not only on musical aspects, but also with regard to inner action, symbolism and dramatic parallels between the two operas. Nearly 100 years after the world premiere of Fervaal , we are aware of other possible influences, sources and elements in d'Indy's opera. One of the most important is the evident similarity with Esaias Tegnér's novel Axel . The only way to filter out the real parallels between Wagner and d'Indy is to look for other aspects previously ignored, as well as to seek out d'Indy's own, original intentions in this opera, and their possible transformation into music.
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Keywords: D'Indy; French opera; Tegnér; Wagner; symbolism

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Essen

Publication date: January 1, 1998

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