UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Enrique Granados' piano suite Goyescas: Los Majos Enamorados - a narrative interpretation in light of his Tonadillas for voice and piano Schmidt, Kathryn


Granados’ Goyescas is a substantial six movement work for piano that was written between the years 1900 and 1914. Part I was published in Barcelona by Casa Dotesio in 1912, and Part II in 1914 by Unión Musical Espanola. What is not widely known is that around the same time, Granados composed twelve Tonadillas. These songs for voice and piano are closely related to the piano pieces, and were published by Casa Dotesio in 1913. The composer himself acknowledges the important relationship between the Tonadillas and Goyescas in the statement “. . . I wanted to create a collection that would serve me as a document for the Goyescas.” An analysis of similarities between the two works provides evidence for the fact that at least certain Tonadillas may have been composed before, or concurrently with the piano suite Goyescas, between the years 1900 and 1913. The current literature neglects the important connection between these works (Chapter 2); however, this study maintains that the Tonadillas are highly illuminating for performers, analysts and listeners of Goyescas, and are an important interpretive tool. Furthermore, Goyescas’ programmatic titles, use of folk tunes and other indications demand a narrative interpretation; this is only enlivened by study of the Tonadillas with their descriptive texts. Chapter 3 of this study will address the socio-political context that influenced Granados in his composition of Goyescas and the Tonadillas, with particular reference to Goya’s role and his Caprichos Nos. 5 and 10. A comparative study of the Tonadillas and Goyescas in Chapter 4 reveals important similarities which contribute to the narrative interpretation of Goyescas. A more rigorous analysis of Goyescas demonstrates formal variety and melodic coherence amongst the movements of the suite, further contributing to the narrative component (Chapter 5). Finally, in Chapter 6, a demonstration of the validity of the narrative interpretation in light of performance practice considerations will conclude this project. Goyescas is an invaluable work with an exciting narrative that becomes even more compelling when addressed in light of the Tonadillas for voice and piano.

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