Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Louis Moreau Gottschalk's assimilation of African American elements in “Souvenir de Porto Rico”
by Park, Jihyun, M.A., California State University, Long Beach, 2009, 39; 1472353
Abstract (Summary)

There are few academic works on how Louis Moreau Gottschalk was influenced by New Orleans' geographical, social, and musical milieu. The early childhood of Gottschalk was a time of tremendous social, emotional, and intellectual growth with exposure to African-American and European music. To address this absorption, this study proposes an analysis into the childhood background and musical career of the pianist-composer and of his Creole piano piece Souvenir de Porto Rico. This study relies on several key sources: critics' responses, secondary biographies, and the composer's personal diary. These sources are important to explain Gottschalk's assimilation of African-American elements which were inevitably connected to his cultural experiences. The goal of this project is to shed light on the impact that these influences had on the musical character of Gottschalk.

A portion of this study looks at the professional activities of Gottschalk and his reception in America and abroad, particularly in Paris. Through Gottschalk's Parisian and American experiences his musical style was crystallized. His ability to synthesize many cultural elements into a style of his own was indeed remarkable.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Briggs, Ray
School: California State University, Long Beach
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 48/02M, Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Biographies, Music
Publication Number: 1472353
ISBN: 978-1-109-47267-7
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