'The Opera Scenes In The Shadow Of The God Dagon'

Decent Essays

The opera begins in the shadow of the temple of the god Dagon, with a crowd of Hebrews complaining about their suffering at the hands of the Philistines. There is a short orchestral introduction before they begin to sing of their strife, and it truly represents how low the people feel, with its low, sad strings. Samson emerges, practically begging them to trust in their God. They are slow to respond, but Samson is so persuasive, and the vocal line represents this by being so sweeping and regal, that they cannot help but be inspired by his faith n their God. However, Abimélech is cruel, mocks the hebrew God, and Samson becomes violent towards him in return. This is a really interesting part of the opera, when Samson is riling the Hebrews up there is a chromatic movement in the low brass, that will repeat later, pretty much whenever SAmson, or any of the other characters for that matter, makes a poor choice. The trombones are almost mocking him, but they are certainly pointing at smasons actions to tell us the choice he made was wrong. SAmson kills Abimélech and he is cursed by the high priest for causing the hebrews to rebel. The vocals of this curse are rather terrifying. He is incredibly rhythmic and derisive, in this very passionate or firey aria. Of course this curse is what sets up the entire plot, he will be doomed to be betrayed by the woman who he loves. The next morning, things are all calm again and a group of old people are praying quietly. This is a

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