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The meaning of 'lateness': Mediations of work, self and society in Tippett's Triple Concerto

Lookup NU author(s): Professor David ClarkeORCiD


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'Lateness' is a musicological concept relevant to Tippett's oeuvre - if applied dialectically. His Triple Concerto (1978-9) is arguably the first work to reveal the 'late' trait of renewed lyricism and tonal transparency which together serve as an immanent critique of the fragmentation and dissonance of his second period (which began with King Priam). The co-presence of both sets of characteristics, whose synthesis is only partial, issues in a heterogeneity suggestive of a future social order in which the particular is not subsumed into the totality. This world-view sedimented in the musical structure constitutes a pluralism which invites comparison with, but may not be identical to, notions within postmodernism. Its paradigm may also have been distilled from the (problematic) social mediation of self which Tippett would have experienced as a gay person.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Clarke D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of the Royal Musical Association

Year: 2000

Volume: 125

Issue: 1

Pages: 62-92

Print publication date: 01/01/2000

ISSN (print): 0269-0403

ISSN (electronic): 1471-6933

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1093/jrma/125.1.62


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