For some listeners terrified of atonal music, almost anything Schoenberg wrote could have made this list. But the German composer's one-act opera Erwartung (Expectation), an extended monologue for solo soprano, is one of his most confronting, intensely paranoid psychological experiences. A lone woman wanders through the woods at night searching for her lover. When she stumbles upon a tree trunk that she believes to be his dead body, a tirade of fears and emotions is unleashed. At the cruel climax of the work, she discovers the real body. It's no walk in the park.
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