Reading Shakespeare, Seeing Mendelssohn: Concert Readings of A Midsummer Night's Dream, ca. 1850-1920

Kimber, Marian Wilson
June 2006
Musical Quarterly;Summer/Fall2006, Vol. 89 Issue 2/3, p199
Academic Journal
The article focuses on composer Felix Mendelssohn and his compositions for the "A Midsummer Night's Dream," by William Shakespeare. It states that examination of 19th century performance practices in concerts of Mendelssohn's music for Shakespeare's play can provide ways of investigating audience perceptions. Modern descriptions of concerts that exhibited readings of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" suggest that hearing Mendelssohn's music could indeed be a "visual" experience. While "concert readings" of the play were oftentimes problematic for audiences in certain ways, few of these had anything specifically to do with Mendelssohn's music, because the problem is on Shakespeare's fairy play itself.


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