The 'Highest Dynamic Level Attainable Unvoiced’: György Ligeti, Language, and the Theatre of the Absurd
Keywords:Ligeti, Beckett, Ionesco, Theatre, Aventures, Nouvelle, Artikulation, Existentialism
This paper identifies a particular sub-genre of György Ligeti's life work. The 'lingual' works are those that explore the field of language, linguistics and related philosophies through the composer's typical playfulness and invention. Three strata are demarcated by the author, and the most complex, the 'speech pieces', is investigated more thoroughly. The works of focus in this paper are Artikulation, Aventures, and Nouvelles Aventures. This is done with specific reference to the work of Samuel Beckett and Eugène Ionesco, exploring the details of the parallels between them, and the philosophy that underpins them all. It is Ligeti's investigation of vernacular form which brings these pieces in line with what is now known as the Theatre of the Absurd.
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