Trump, The Musical: This Israeli's Mash-up Is So Terrifyingly Funny, You Can't Stop Watching

Avner Hanani’s 12-minute 'The Trump Sonata' features movements with titles like 'Apologize' and 'Smile,' about Hillary Clinton

Hagai Hitron
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Hagai Hitron

An Israeli composer has written a musical composition about the 45th U.S. president, called “The Trump Sonata.”

Avner Hanani’s 12-minute sonata is split into six movements, titled “Good Time,” “Love,” “Smile” (about his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton), “Build the Wall,” “Apologize” and “I’ll Be Back.”

The new work manages to be surprising, sophisticated and funny, yet also completely terrifying. “The Trump Sonata” is best described as a kind of monodrama for video and piano. It is actually a pastiche of various Trump speeches, with the composer providing accompaniment on the piano.

Hanani says that despite what people may think, his work is a politically “neutral” creation.

“It’s an attempt to capture the person through musical and artistic means," he says. "I treated Trump like an operatic figure – larger than life. So you could say I was complimenting Trump, and that the music I attached to him is attractive. Besides that, I tried to be varied, not to follow the intonation of the speeches all the time.”

The composer say that when he hears Trump speak, “sometimes I hear his speech like a chant, with clear intervals, and sometimes like sprechgesang [a style of dramatic vocalization somewhere between speaking and singing], without clear intervals.”

Hanani admits Trump’s opponents could see the work as mocking the U.S. president, but this wasn’t his intention. Still, he concedes that although he “didn’t work on it out of a desire to make someone laugh, I don’t think it is a humorless work.”

One thing is for sure: “The Trump Sonata” was a labor of love. “I invested many hours to choose the most musically interesting passages, with a beginning, middle and an end,” says Hanani.

Hanani explains that he used the same Trump quotes over and over because repetition is a significant element in music. “Just ask Beethoven,” he smiles.

“They are required here so we can hear the music behind the speeches,” he says. “To me, the result sounds similar to the structure of Scarlatti’s sonatas,” referring to the 18th-century Italian composer.

You can hear all six movements of “The Trump Sonata” on YouTube, and Hanani says the next step is performing the work in front of an audience, accompanying Trump’s quotes with live music. “Anyone who organizes it will get the pianist for free,” he quips.

Click the alert icon to follow topics:

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.
From $1 for the first month

SUBSCRIBE
Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

Charles Lindbergh addressing an America First Committee rally on October 3, 1941.

Ken Burns’ Brilliant ‘The U.S. and the Holocaust’ Has Only One Problem

The projected rise in sea level on a beach in Haifa over the next 30 years.

Facing Rapid Rise in Sea Levels, Israel Could Lose Large Parts of Its Coastline by 2050

Tal Dilian.

As Israel Reins in Its Cyberarms Industry, an Ex-intel Officer Is Building a New Empire

Queen Elizabeth II, King Charles III and a British synagogue.

How the Queen’s Death Changes British Jewry’s Most Distinctive Prayer

Newly appointed Israeli ambassador to Chile, Gil Artzyeli, poses for a group picture alongside Rabbi Yonatan Szewkis, Chilean deputy Helia Molina and Gerardo Gorodischer, during a religious ceremony in a synagogue in Vina del Mar, Chile last week.

Chile Community Leaders 'Horrified' by Treatment of Israeli Envoy

Queen Elizabeth attends a ceremony at Windsor Castle, in June 2021.

Over 120 Countries, but Never Israel: Queen Elizabeth II's Unofficial Boycott