Ryan Taycher deposited Redeeming the Betrayer: Elgar’s Portrayal of Judas in ‘The Apostles’ on Humanities Commons 3 months ago
Despite its generally agreed importance, very little has been written about ‘The Apostles.’ Even among the extant publications that address ‘The Apostles,’ scholars have focused on its history and development, its reception, or analytical descriptions of its surface themes. The aim of this study will therefore be to provide neither a biography of Elgar, nor an account of the genesis of the work, but to analyze ‘The Apostles’ in a manner that will achieve a deeper understanding of the oratorio. Chapter 1 explores the complexities that surround Judas and the different ways in which he was perceived throughout history. Then, through my analysis of the surface motives in Chapter 2 and their significance in relation to the large-scale harmonic structure in Chapter 3, I will suggest that Elgar does not denigrate Judas as the betrayer of Christ in ‘The Apostles,’ but rather depicts him as a tragic yet crucial figure in achieving the redemption of mankind, and through this Judas himself is redeemed.