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Det ulmer under overflaten.: Agathe Backer Grøndahl (1847-1907). Genus, sjanger og norskhet
Institutionen för kultur, estetik och medier, Göteborgs universitet.
2008 (Norwegian)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

My dissertation is a problem oriented one. The composer pianist Agathe Bac­ker Grøn­dahl (1847–1907) has always been a self-evident figure in chapters of Nor­we­gian music history books that cover music, musicians and composers in "Grieg’s shadow". Extensive historical source mate­ri­als (reception materials connected to Backer Grøndahl’s con­certs and com­po­si­tions; her letters, notebooks, work­books and sketches) form the basis of the study. The problems studied are what kind of expec­ta­tions are connected to three inter­twined core concepts connected to Backer Grøn­dahl, namely: "femininity", "genre", and "Norwegianness"  (the folk-influenced Norwegian tradi­tion). Musical and mate­ri­al, as well as institutional, sociological and economical, ”Agathe Backer Grøn­dahl” dis­courses are examined. The arenas where the three core concepts and dis­courses unfold, sound, develop, are moulded and understood, are threefold:

  • Musical culture with which the pianist composer and her compositions interacted from 1866–1903.
  • Presentations of her in monographs and music history books.
  • Various attempts to revise this kind of music historiography.

The musical analysis starts out from reception materials connected to her per­for­man­ces of her own works and tries to trace the critics’ de­scriptions in the sco­res. The works analyzed are: One of her two orchestral compositions, An­dan­te quasi allegretto for piano and orchestra (1869) in sonata form. (I re­dis­cove­­red this "lost" work in the National Library in Oslo.) The song "To the queen of my heart" (Op. 1/3, 1870), the descrip­tive­ly titled lyrical piece Wood Nymph’s Dance (1887), the feminist cantata Nytaarsgry (1901) performed at the Scandinavian Women’s Convention 1902 and the singable and (in)famous song "Eventide" Op. 42/7 1899). Per­formed compositions become perfor­ma­tive via the reception materials, hers, the listeners’ and amateur performers "pro­­­ducerly texts" connected to them.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Göteborgs: Göteborgs universitet , 2008. , 563 p.
Musikvetenskapliga publikationer, ISSN 1654-3858
, Skrifter från musikvetenskap Göteborgs Universitet, ISSN 1654-6261 ; 91
Keyword [en]
Agathe Backer Grøndahl. Music, gender and genius, femininity, mu¬sic histori¬cal knowledge and canonisation, gender and genre, gender and "Nor¬we¬gian sound", mu¬si¬cal analysis and performativity, "Andante quasi allegretto", "Til mit Hjertes Dron¬ning", "Huldreslaat", "Nytaarsgry", "Mot Kveld".
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URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-29931OAI: diva2:236368
Public defence
Vasa B, Vera Sandbergs allé 8, Göteborg (Norwegian)
Available from: 2009-09-22 Created: 2009-09-22 Last updated: 2009-09-22Bibliographically approved

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