Identifier

etd-07102016-231339

Degree

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)

Department

Music

Document Type

Dissertation

Abstract

Highly praised American composer Carlisle Floyd (b. 1925), well known for his musical dramas Susannah (1955) and Of Mice and Men (1970), wrote Willie Stark (1981), commissioned by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and later Houston Grand Opera. Floyd’s libretto and musical score was based upon Robert Penn Warren’s Pulitzer Prize-Winning novel All The King’s Men. Despite the vast amount of publicity it received at the premiere, this opera has only occasionally been performed in the last 35 years. Chapter One discusses Carlisle Floyd’s creation of Willie Stark. Chapter Two discusses the workshop performance of the piece. Chapter Three discusses the show’s director, Harold Prince. Chapter Four covers the reviews of the Houston Grand Opera Premiere, the Kennedy Center Premiere, and the filmed version for Public Broadcasting Service’s “Great Performances.” Chapter Five addresses the revivals of Willie Stark after the premiere productions. Chapter Six concludes with assessments of critical reviews to offer possible explanations for the show’s limited revivals.

Date

2016

Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Sims, Loraine

Included in

Music Commons

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