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Classical Studies Program presents

New Music: The Bakkai by Dylan Mattingly

A new musical setting of the choruses from the Euripides play by composer Dylan Mattingly

Saturday, April 13, 2013

The Bakkhai is a thirty-minute musical composition for voices and instrumental ensemble, inspired by composer Dylan Mattingly's careful study of the lyrics and rhythmic structure of the choral odes in Euripedes' terrifying final play, The Bakkhai (or, The Bacchae).  Recreating aspects of Euripides' tragedy in this new work, Mattingly has based the rhythm of his Bakkhai on the complex patterns of long and short syllables that constitute the meter of Euripides' choral odes.  The piece is written in "just intonation," the method of tuning that would have been used in fifth century Athens.  Unlike "equal temperament," the dominant system of tuning in western music over the last few centuries, "just intonation" relies on the mathematics of the natural world to derive pitches from their organic relation to other pitches.  For this piece, Mattingly has re-tuned a piano using just intonation and has specified that the other instruments be tuned to accord with the piano.  The Bakkhai is scored for four voices, two oboes, cello, bass, re-tuned piano, and two percussionists.  The lyrics comprise all the lines of the seven choruses of Euripedes' play, sung in ancient Greek.
Download: Bacchanal_ROMM POSTER LO res black oval.pdf

For more information, call 845-758-8822, or e-mail dm9517@bard.edu.

Location: Chapel of the Holy Innocents