Date: 7:30 – 9:00 pm, 07-Nov-2014
Cost: Meetings are Free to members, Guests $5 – Students with ID $2
This talk will introduce Verdi’s Aida in the historical and political context in which it was composed. The talk with discuss the concept of “oriental” music as it was understood in Europe during the nineteenth century and the way in which the opera is given a distinctive sound that was intended to be understood as “Egyptian.” The talk will also treat the controversy that has surrounded this opera in recent years concerning its status as a “political” work.
About the speaker:
Kenneth DeLong was born in Nova Scotia and raised in India, where he received his initial training in music at a missionary boarding school. His undergraduate work was completed at Acadia University, with concentrations in music and European history. Following a year teaching music in Newfoundland, he attended the University of Manitoba, where he took his B.Mus. (Hons). In 1969 he moved to California to attend Stanford University, where he completed a Ph.D. in musicology. In 1974 he joined the Music Department of The University of Calgary and is currently a professor of music history.
Outside his university activities, Kenneth DeLong is the Calgary correspondent for Opera Canada, the classical music reviewer for The Calgary Herald, and for 25 years years taught a course called Opera, Anyone? for the Calgary School in conjunction with Calgary Opera.
His interest in opera is of long duration, beginning initially with his involvement in Gilbert and Sullivan productions in India, and continuing during his years as a university student in Winnipeg and California, where he participated in the preparation of productions of The Magic Flute, Dido and Aeneas, Rusalka, Hansel and Gretel, H.M.S. Pinafore, and La Bohéme. At the University of Calgary, he regularly teaches courses on the history of opera and on the Broadway musical.
Room EDC 287 in the Education Block at the University of Calgary.