The Pantheist Index


Music: Work by composers and musicians who, while not necessarily Pantheists, create(d) compositions that may be considered Pantheistic.

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Directories (sites listed)
  • Aston, Sue (1) Composer and violinist who draws much of her inspiration from Nature and the British countryside.

  • Beethoven, Ludwig van (1770 - 1827) (2) This great musician abandoned the Catholicism of his upbringing and adopted Goethe's Pantheism.

  • Butterworth, George (1885 - 1916) (1) Composer in the rich tradition of English pastoral music whose brief life was ended by a sniper's bullet in August 1916.

  • Debussy, Claude (1862 - 1918) (2) French composer who once said, "I have made mysterious Nature my religion".

  • Delius, Frederick (1862 - 1934) (6) English composer whose Pantheistic views were reflected in much of his work.

  • Finzi, Gerald (1901 - 1956) (3) Despite his Italian Jewish parentage Finzi is very much of the English pastoral tradition, particularly exemplified in "The Fall of the Leaf" and his setting of Wordsworth's "Intimations of Immortality".

  • Janacek, Leos (1854 - 1928) (3) Moravian born composer who drew much inspiration from Nature and the Czech countryside.

  • Mahler, Gustav (1860 - 1911) (3) Born into a Jewish family, Mahler converted to Catholicism to escape the anti-semitic attitudes prevalent in Vienna and later composed one of the early 20th century's great Pantheistic works, "Das Lied von der Erde", settings of Chinese songs contemplating the relationships between death and Nature.

  • Rautavaara, Einojuhani (1928 - ) (1) Finnish composer who, although not a Pantheist, created some highly Pantheistic music.

  • Ravel, Maurice (1875 - 1937) (2) Ravel was not a Pantheist although his works contain fine Pantheistic moments - the depiction of daybreak in "Daphnis and Chloe", the moonlit garden in "L'Enfant et les Sortileges" and the movement of water in "Jeux d'Eau".

  • Roach, Steve (3) As prodigious, prolific and profound as Mozart, Steve Roach's Pantheism is palpable in every piece of work he creates, be it serenely sublime or heart-poundlingly primordial.

  • Scriabin, Alexander (1872 - 1915) (3) Russian composer whose beliefs and output, although increasingly eccentric and self-obsessed, frequently hovered around the boundaries of Pantheism.

  • Sibelius, Jean (1865 - 1957) (2) Finnish composer who drew inspiration from the forests, lakes and folklore of his native land.

  • Vaughan Williams, Ralph (1872 - 1958) (5) Composer who, as an atheist working within the Christian traditions of English music, produced many works that display Pantheistic qualities.

  • Wagner, Richard (1813 - 1883) (3) Although Wagner's opinions and writings continue to provoke rage and disgust, he stands as one of the great creative forces of the 19th century. His music (particularly "Das Ring der Nibelungen") contains examples of Nature-inspired writing that are both powerful and sublimely beautiful.


Sites
  • A Pagan Symphony: the Mystical Influence in English Classical Music Article by Sue Aston on those English composers, particularly Bax, Elgar, Vaughan Williams, Holst, Bantock and Butterworth, whose works demonstrate an affinity with the landscape and Nature-based spirituality.

  • Antonio Vivaldi - The Four Seasons One of the earliest examples of program music, consisting of four violin concertos, each representing one of the seasons. Includes brief sound files for each of the twelve movements.

  • Landscapes in Music: An Overview Detailed discussion by Martin H. Monkman of the various ways in which composers have portrayed landscapes and natural events.

  • Two Readings About "The Rite of Spring" Igor Stravinsky's comments on his notorious ballet, which he describes as a "Pantheistic uprising of the universal harvest", and a memoir by Bronislava Nijinska, a dancer at the 1913 premiere.

71 pending site(s)


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