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Le Grand Macabre (1974-77, revised 1996) has firmly consolidated its position as one of the major operatic works of the twentieth century. Few operas composed since the 1970s have received as many productions; recent successes in particular have familiarised a growing audience with the fast-moving, eclectic score.3 In seeking to shed light on the opera’s appeal, this book addresses significant issues related to the ambivalent narrative theme and the process of conceiving musico-dramatic form in the context of musical postmodernism. The new perspectives on Ligeti’s engagement with past music and the notions of parody and pastiche presented here carry potential implications for the wider study of modernist musical aesthetics, analysis, critical musicology and musical postmodernism.