Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name



Music History

Degree Program

Music with a concentration in Music History and Literature, MM

Committee Chair

Ehman, Caroline

Committee Co-Chair (if applicable)

Burke, Devin

Committee Member

Burke, Devin

Committee Member

Wolek, Krzystof

Author's Keywords

Beckett and music; theatereality; soprano; text and music; semantic; Samuel Beckett


Samuel Beckett’s literary and dramatic works have served as sources of inspiration in the last five decades for multiple composers such as Morton Feldman and György Kurtág. Beckett’s late minimalist monologue Not I (1972) is the basis for recent compositions by Heinz Holliger, Paul Rhys, and Agata Zubel. While scholars have discussed similarities between Beckett’s style and individual musical works, a comprehensive study of multiple compositions based on the same work by Samuel Beckett has not yet been completed. Each of these compositions reflects various aspects of Beckett’s late dramatic style such as his use of rhythm, depiction of internal voices, and exploration of speech production. These musical works highlight aural features of Beckett’s Not I uniquely through the medium of music. This study will reveal how these musical works emphasize the sonic content of Beckett’s Not I in a significant manner.

Included in

Musicology Commons