Author Topic: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets  (Read 3212 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Ken B

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4466
  • The Age of the Wanker is upon us
    • kenBlogic
  • Location: Canada
  • Currently Listening to:
    Canoes not battleships.
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #40 on: January 05, 2019, 08:01:39 AM »
I did read the whole article.

His larger point was that he separates the composition from the composer’s politics. (But apparently not from the composer’s nationality, without explaining or even acknowledging this discrepancy.) This too is weaker than what Ken wrote.

I was responding to the quote you chose. If you believe that quote is not representative of his position, then maybe you should have chosen a different one.

I am not sure I quite agree with what you are suggesting Pat, but it’s an interesting observation about the nationality but not the politics. You are right, he does that. But is that uncommon?  I certainly do the same thing with Canadian music. Colin McPhee was a Stalinist.

As for Americans, Copland was a communist too, and I bet you'd get *objections* if you wanted to see his music disappear because of that.
Give a man a fire and he is warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he is warm for life.

Offline Florestan

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17482
  • Location: Bucharest, Romania
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #41 on: January 05, 2019, 09:21:31 AM »
I did read the whole article.

His larger point was that he separates the composition from the composer’s politics. (But apparently not from the composer’s nationality, without explaining or even acknowledging this discrepancy.) This too is weaker than what Ken wrote.

I was responding to the quote you chose. If you believe that quote is not representative of his position, then maybe you should have chosen a different one.

I chose that specific quote because I remember Thielemann's being upbraided right here on GMG for limiting his  repertoire to Austro-German music only. (I could do some necromancy in your stead, if you insist...)

As to your other point, I confess I'm at a loss understanding it.

Quote
he separates the composition from the composer’s politics. (But apparently not from the composer’s nationality, without explaining or even acknowledging this discrepancy.)

He is a German conductor separating Wagner's or Pfitzner's German composers' political views from their music. Should he really do the same with French or Italian composers in order to get your stamp of approval? That's precisely the point he made in that Haaretz article which you apparently might have read but which certainly you didn't uinderstand.

I dread contemplating the alternative of your equating consciously German composers with Nazism...


« Last Edit: January 05, 2019, 09:26:14 AM by Florestan »
I compose music because I must give expression to my feelings, just as I talk because I must give utterance to my thoughts. --- Rachmaninoff

Offline Ken B

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4466
  • The Age of the Wanker is upon us
    • kenBlogic
  • Location: Canada
  • Currently Listening to:
    Canoes not battleships.
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #42 on: January 05, 2019, 09:40:45 AM »
I don’t think it’s actually a discrepancy. You can have quite a range of political ideas and yet still be part of the same culture and tradition. Schools, mentoring, orchestral playing, friendships etc allcontribute. Especially in eras before modern travel there really was a distinct French tradition in music, and setting the voice. As there was a German one, and a Balinese one. It makes perfect sense to speak of the German repertoire and to see Pfitzner as part of it. What would be weird, and it’s implicitly what the critics seem to be doing, is to see a Nazi tradition. Pfitzner May well have been a Nazi — Webern certainly was — but that doesn’t make his chord progressions Nazi chord progressions.
Give a man a fire and he is warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he is warm for life.

Offline Florestan

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17482
  • Location: Bucharest, Romania
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #43 on: January 05, 2019, 10:04:31 AM »
Pfitzner May well have been a Nazi

He might have wished to be one, but even they eventually rejected him -- he was just an opinionated, stubborn, old bore.   :laugh:

Quote
— Webern certainly was —

Yes he was, by his own words, but you won't see it mentioned, or even alluded to, in any music history course --- let alone seeing it acknowledged by fans of the 2nd Viennese School.  ;D

Quote
but that doesn’t make his chord progressions Nazi chord progressions.

If you say it, it's innocuous; if Thielemann says it, then he's a right-wing nuts...  ;D
I compose music because I must give expression to my feelings, just as I talk because I must give utterance to my thoughts. --- Rachmaninoff

Offline Ken B

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4466
  • The Age of the Wanker is upon us
    • kenBlogic
  • Location: Canada
  • Currently Listening to:
    Canoes not battleships.
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #44 on: January 05, 2019, 12:01:13 PM »
He might have wished to be one, but even they eventually rejected him -- he was just an opinionated, stubborn, old bore.   :laugh:

Yes he was, by his own words, but you won't see it mentioned, or even alluded to, in any music history course --- let alone seeing it acknowledged by fans of the 2nd Viennese School.  ;D

I'd gladly banish Pfitzner and his acolytes in return for a ban on Webern and his.  ;) >:D >:D :laugh:
Give a man a fire and he is warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he is warm for life.

Offline North Star

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17314
  • Location: Oulu, Finland
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #45 on: January 05, 2019, 04:55:50 PM »
Yes he was, by his own words, but you won't see it mentioned, or even alluded to, in any music history course --- let alone seeing it acknowledged by fans of the 2nd Viennese School.  ;D
Interesting, I don't think I've seen those words - can you share them?
Wikipedia on the matter.
"Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it." - Confucius

My photographs on Flickr

Offline Ken B

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4466
  • The Age of the Wanker is upon us
    • kenBlogic
  • Location: Canada
  • Currently Listening to:
    Canoes not battleships.
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #46 on: January 05, 2019, 05:38:56 PM »
Interesting, I don't think I've seen those words - can you share them?
Wikipedia on the matter.

Quote
Webern's patriotism led him to endorse the Nazi regime, for example, in a series of letters to Joseph Hueber, who was serving in the army and himself held such views. Webern described Hitler on May 2, 1940 as "this unique man" who created "the new state" of Germany; thus Alex Ross characterizes him as "an unashamed Hitler enthusiast".
https://www.gustav-mahler.eu/index.php/personen-2/735-webern-anton-von-1883-1945

I believe his son was a party member. He applied for government funds at one point and was found politically acceptable, even though his music was not.
Give a man a fire and he is warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he is warm for life.

Offline North Star

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17314
  • Location: Oulu, Finland
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #47 on: January 05, 2019, 06:33:40 PM »
https://www.gustav-mahler.eu/index.php/personen-2/735-webern-anton-von-1883-1945

I believe his son was a party member. He applied for government funds at one point and was found politically acceptable, even though his music was not.

Quote
Webern's music, along with that of Berg, Křenek, Schoenberg, and others, was denounced as "cultural Bolshevism" and "degenerate art" by the Nazi Party in Germany, and both publication and performances of it were banned soon after the Anschluss in 1938, although neither did it fare well under the preceding years of Austrofascism. As early as 1933, an Austrian gauleiter on Bayerischer Rundfunk mistakenly and very likely maliciously characterized both Berg and Webern as Jewish composers. As a result of official disapproval throughout the '30s, both found it harder to earn a living; Webern lost a promising conducting career which might have otherwise been more noted and recorded and had to take on work as an editor and proofreader for his publishers, Universal Edition (UE) music publishers. His family's financial situation deteriorated until, by August 1940, his personal records reflected no monthly income. It was thanks to the Swiss philanthropist Werner Reinhart that Webern was able to attend the festive premiere of his Variations for Orchestra, op. 30 in Winterthur, Switzerland in 1943. Reinhart invested all the financial and diplomatic means at his disposal to enable Webern to travel to Switzerland. In return for this support, Webern dedicated the work to him.

There are different descriptions of Webern's attitude towards Nazism; this is perhaps attributable either to its complexity, his internal ambivalence, his prosperity in the preceding years (1918–1934) of post-war Red Vienna in the First Republic of Austria, the subsequently divided political factions of his homeland as represented in his friends and family (from Zionist Schoenberg to his Nazi son Peter), or the different contexts in which or audiences to whom his views were expressed. Further insight into Webern's attitudes comes with the realization that Nazism itself was deeply multifaceted, marked "not  a coherent doctrine or body of systemically interrelated ideas, but rather [by] a vaguer worldview made up of a number of prejudices with varied appeals to different audiences which could scarcely be dignified with the term 'ideology.'"

In broad terms, Webern's attitude seems to have first warmed to a degree of characteristic fervor and perhaps only much later, in conjunction with widespread German disillusionment, cooled to Hitler and the Nazis; but he was no antisemite. On the one hand, Willi Reich notes that Webern attacked Nazi cultural policies in private lectures given in 1933, whose hypothetical publication "would have exposed Webern to serious consequences" later. On the other, some private correspondence attests to his Nazi sympathies, though he denied these to Schoenberg when asked (only once), who heard rumors, never confirmed to him by Rudolf Kolisch and Eduard Steuermann, denied to him by Louis Krasner, and then very strenuously denied to him by Webern.(As such, Schoenberg's Violin Concerto of 1934 (or 1935)–36 continued to bear a dedication to Webern.) Webern's patriotism led him to endorse the Nazi regime, for example, in a series of letters to Joseph Hueber, who was serving in the army and himself held such views. Webern described Hitler on May 2, 1940 as "this unique man" who created "the new state" of Germany; thus Alex Ross characterizes him as "an unashamed Hitler enthusiast".

Musicologist Richard Taruskin describes Webern accurately if vaguely as a pan-German nationalist but then goes much further in claiming specifically that Webern joyfully welcomed the Nazis with the 1938 Anschluss, at best extrapolating from the account of his cited source Krasner and at worst exaggerating or distorting it, as well as describing it sardonically as "heart-breaking."Taruskin's authority on this delicate issue must be credited, if at all, then only with the significant limitations that he has been polemical in general and hostile in particular to the Second Viennese School, of whom Webern is often considered the most extreme and difficult (i.e., the least accessible).

In contrast to Taruskin's methods and pronouncements, musicologist Pamela M. Potter advises that "t is important to consider all the scholarship on musical life in the Third Reich that, taken together, reveals the complexity of the day-to-day existence of musicians and composers," as "it seems inevitable that debates about the political culpability of individuals will persist, especially if the stakes remain so high for composers, for whom an up or down vote can determine inclusion in the canon." In this vein, it might be noted in relation to Taruskin's claim that Webern wrote to friends (husband and wife Josef Humplik and Hildegard Jone) on the day of Anschluss not to invite celebration or to observe developments but to be left alone: "I am totally immersed in my work [composing] and cannot, cannot be disturbed"; Krasner's presence could have been a disturbance to Webern for this reason, and musicologist Kathryn Bailey speculates that this may indeed be why he was rushed off by Webern.

There is, moreover, significant political complexity to be treated, more than enough to complicate any consideration of individual culpability: it is imperative to note that some Social Democrats viewed the National Socialists as an alternative to the Christian Social Party and later Vaterländische Front in the context of reunification with Germany; for example, Karl Renner, a chancellor who served in both the First (1919–33) and Second (post-1945) Austrian Republics, favored a German Anschluss as an alternative to the then Austrofascist regime, under which Berg, Webern, and the Social Democrats suffered. And Webern's professional circle in Vienna included, besides many Jews, many Social Democrats; for example, for David Josef Bach, a close friend of Schoenberg's as well, Webern conducted many workers' and amateur ensembles. Under the Nazis, some Social Democrats expected, there might be more work and protections for workers and laborers, as well as other social reforms and political stability, if not democracy; Webern may well have hoped to again be able to conduct and to be better able to secure a future for his family.

Krasner himself painted not a sentimental portrait but one imbued with a wealth of factual and personal detail for its publication in 1987, describing Webern as clearly naive and idealistic but not entirely without his wits, shame, or conscience; Krasner carefully contextualizes Webern as a member of Austrian society at the time, one departed by Schoenberg and one in which the already pro-Nazi Vienna Philharmonic had even refused to play the late Berg's Violin Concerto. As Krasner vividly recalled, he and Webern were visiting at the latter's home in Maria Enzersdorf, Mödling when the Nazis invaded Austria; Webern, uncannily seeming to anticipate the timing down to 4 o'clock in the afternoon, turned on the radio to hear this news and immediately warned Krasner, urging him to flee immediately, whereupon he did (to Vienna). Whether this was for Krasner's safety or to save Webern the embarrassment of Krasner's presence during a time of possible celebration in the pro-Nazi Webern family or indeed in most of pro-Nazi Mödling, by Krasner's description, Krasner was ambivalent and uncertain, withholding judgment. Only later did Krasner realize how self-admittedly "foolhardy" he had been and in what danger he had placed himself, revealing an ignorance perhaps shared by Webern. Krasner had even revisited frequently, hoping to convince friends (e.g., Schoenberg's daughter Gertrude and her husband Felix Greissle) to emigrate before time ran out.

Moreover, Krasner retold from a story related to him in long discussion with Schoenberg's son Görgi, a Jew who remained in Vienna during the war, that the Weberns, much to their risk and credit, had provided Görgi and his family with food and shelter toward the end of the war at the Weberns' home in a Mödling apartment belonging to their son-in-law. Görgi and his family were left behind for their safety when Webern fled on foot with his family to Mittersill, about 75 km. away, for safety of their own in light of the coming Russian invasion; Amalie, one of Webern's daughters, wrote of '17 persons pressed together in the smallest possible space' upon their arrival. Ironically, the Russians pronounced Görgi a "Nazi spy" when he was discovered due to the Nazi munitions and propagranda in the Weberns' basement store-room. Görgi is said to have saved himself from execution by protesting and drawing attention to his clothes, sewn as specified by the Nazis with the yellow Star of David. He continued to live in this apartment with this family until 1969.

Webern is also known to have aided Josef Polnauer, a Jewish friend who, as an albino, managed to largely escape the Nazis' attention and later edit a publication of Webern's correspondence from this time with Hildegard Jone, Webern's then lyricist and collaborator, and her husband, sculptor Josef Humplik.
Saying that Webern certainly was a Nazi on the basis of this seems ridiculous. I did find some passages from his letters, including a quotation from a secondary source with enthusiasm for Mein Kampf and Germany winning WWII, from here on Google Books, but the author also stresses out how expressing opinions like these might have also been about self-preservation. He also helped and hid numerous Jewish friends.

"Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it." - Confucius

My photographs on Flickr

Offline Ken B

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4466
  • The Age of the Wanker is upon us
    • kenBlogic
  • Location: Canada
  • Currently Listening to:
    Canoes not battleships.
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #48 on: January 05, 2019, 06:50:22 PM »
Is that Wikipedia? Often a tendentious source.

An appeal to “complexity” is weak tea. Yes but is still yes.

Probably he was not anti Semitic. Arguing that you can only be a Hitler enthusiast if you are an antisemite is unconvincing. You can be naive or oblivious or deluded or indifferent.

Anyway you asked for his own words.

Time being finite, I am willing to trust Ross did his homework.

Update. The Twisted Muse, by Kater is a book devoted to the question of who was or wasn’t.  Pp 72-74 discuss Webern.

https://books.google.ca/books?id=GC0LGe3uzK0C&pg=PA72&lpg=PA72&dq=anton+Webern+Hitler&source=bl&ots=IUAiSOwmJx&sig=iWhn6vw9-TYdY759-9V7yRfC1_Y&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjEovG3lNjfAhUn44MKHVMTAEU4ChDoATAOegQIBxAB#v=twopage&q=anton%20Webern%20Hitler&f=true
« Last Edit: January 05, 2019, 07:09:53 PM by Ken B »
Give a man a fire and he is warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he is warm for life.

Online Pat B

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 2128
  • A=430
  • Location: USA
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #49 on: January 07, 2019, 07:27:42 AM »
I chose that specific quote because I remember Thielemann's being upbraided right here on GMG for limiting his  repertoire to Austro-German music only. (I could do some necromancy in your stead, if you insist…)

I vaguely recall some of those comments from when the BPO was choosing its new MD. The key word here is “limit,” and the perception of Thielemann seems to be that he is limited not just to Austro-German repertoire but to a small slice of Austro-German repertoire. I recall reading (maybe elsewhere) that he only excelled in Bruckner, Wagner, and Strauss. If he instead specialized in Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, and Borodin, then that criticism would be fundamentally similar.

As an overseas listener, I don’t have any problem with his repertoire. If I want to listen to Vivaldi, Haydn, Berlioz, Shostakovich, or Ives, I can easily choose a different conductor. But the musicians of the Berlin Philharmonic, when choosing an MD, presumably have a different perspective.

Quote
As to your other point, I confess I'm at a loss understanding it.

He is a German conductor separating Wagner's or Pfitzner's German composers' political views from their music. Should he really do the same with French or Italian composers in order to get your stamp of approval? That's precisely the point he made in that Haaretz article which you apparently might have read but which certainly you didn't uinderstand.

I dread contemplating the alternative of your equating consciously German composers with Nazism...

Like most of us, I have occasionally written things that were open to interpretations different from what I meant. But I did not write anything resembling the latter. If you need me to rephrase it, then: he is cherry-picking which aspects of the composer’s identity he attaches to the composition.

But that thing I put in parentheses is not what really irks me about Thielemann’s comment. More in my response to Ken.

Online Pat B

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 2128
  • A=430
  • Location: USA
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #50 on: January 07, 2019, 07:30:58 AM »
I am not sure I quite agree with what you are suggesting Pat, but it’s an interesting observation about the nationality but not the politics. You are right, he does that. But is that uncommon?  I certainly do the same thing with Canadian music. Colin McPhee was a Stalinist.

As for Americans, Copland was a communist too, and I bet you'd get *objections* if you wanted to see his music disappear because of that.

Your first paragraph shows you are putting thought into this, which I appreciate.

But your last clause seems out of the blue. I do not want to see Pfitzner’s music to disappear because of his politics. I do not want to see Pfitzner’s music to disappear at all!

I don’t think it’s actually a discrepancy. You can have quite a range of political ideas and yet still be part of the same culture and tradition. Schools, mentoring, orchestral playing, friendships etc allcontribute. Especially in eras before modern travel there really was a distinct French tradition in music, and setting the voice. As there was a German one, and a Balinese one. It makes perfect sense to speak of the German repertoire and to see Pfitzner as part of it.

In composition, there were situations where this applied. The Franco-Flemish school comes to mind. There were also regional tendencies in the baroque era, but even by then there was increasing cross-pollination. Bach knew Vivaldi’s work. Handel spent decades in London. By the late romantic era, those lines were more blurry still. The masters were published and studied all over. Dvořák 7 is considered Czech because Dvořák was Czech. If a German had written it, it would be considered German repertoire.

But all of that is tangential. Even with my definition of German repertoire, I don’t object to a German musician performing German repertoire. I also don’t object to a German musician being limited to German repertoire. What I object to is a musician who limits himself to German repertoire casting himself as a victim via an obvious strawman.

Quote
What would be weird, and it’s implicitly what the critics seem to be doing, is to see a Nazi tradition. Pfitzner May well have been a Nazi — Webern certainly was — but that doesn’t make his chord progressions Nazi chord progressions.

There was indeed a Nazi style of music (and of other forms of art). If it can’t be called a tradition, it is only because they weren’t around long enough. Whether Pfitzner’s critics have ascribed that musical style to him, I do not know.

Offline North Star

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17314
  • Location: Oulu, Finland
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #51 on: January 07, 2019, 08:04:45 AM »
Is that Wikipedia? Often a tendentious source.

An appeal to “complexity” is weak tea. Yes but is still yes.

Probably he was not anti Semitic. Arguing that you can only be a Hitler enthusiast if you are an antisemite is unconvincing. You can be naive or oblivious or deluded or indifferent.

Anyway you asked for his own words.

Time being finite, I am willing to trust Ross did his homework.

Update. The Twisted Muse, by Kater is a book devoted to the question of who was or wasn’t.  Pp 72-74 discuss Webern.
It's from the site you posted a link to, but copied there from Wikipedia as you say. Naivety was mentioned in the Webern bio on Google Books, and it must have played a part, along with much of the family, apart from his wife, supporting Hitler.
"Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it." - Confucius

My photographs on Flickr

Offline Ken B

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4466
  • The Age of the Wanker is upon us
    • kenBlogic
  • Location: Canada
  • Currently Listening to:
    Canoes not battleships.
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #52 on: January 07, 2019, 12:04:27 PM »
It's from the site you posted a link to, but copied there from Wikipedia as you say. Naivety was mentioned in the Webern bio on Google Books, and it must have played a part, along with much of the family, apart from his wife, supporting Hitler.
The point about naïveté is important I agree, but it applies to more than just Webern. Lots of people were sympathetic to Hitler, and even more to Mussolini, before their true nature became evident/undeniable. People are often duped by monsters. (A famous, rather sinister example, is Hjalmar Schacht. He was tried and acquitted at Nuremberg. He was a nasty piece of work, and supported some Nazi nastiness for sure, and early on was a Nazi cabinet minister. But he fell away from them as things progressed.) I see Webern as supporting Hitler because of his successes, and try8ng/managing to fool himself about his real nature.
Give a man a fire and he is warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he is warm for life.

Ghost of Baron Scarpia

  • Guest
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #53 on: January 07, 2019, 12:10:53 PM »
The point about naïveté is important I agree, but it applies to more than just Webern. Lots of people were sympathetic to Hitler, and even more to Mussolini, before their true nature became evident/undeniable. People are often duped by monsters. (A famous, rather sinister example, is Hjalmar Schacht. He was tried and acquitted at Nuremberg. He was a nasty piece of work, and supported some Nazi nastiness for sure, and early on was a Nazi cabinet minister. But he fell away from them as things progressed.) I see Webern as supporting Hitler because of his successes, and try8ng/managing to fool himself about his real nature.

Psychoanalyzing Webern seems utterly pointless, especially in view of the paucity of reliable evidence. I see no trace of Nazi-ism in his music, so I feel no discomfort listening to it. He's dead, so I am doing him no favors one way or the other. If he were alive and collecting royalties I might give it some thought.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2019, 12:12:37 PM by Ghost of Baron Scarpia »

Offline Florestan

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17482
  • Location: Bucharest, Romania
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #54 on: January 07, 2019, 12:37:16 PM »
. I see no trace of Nazi-ism in his music, so I feel no discomfort listening to it. He's dead, so I am doing him no favors one way or the other. If he were alive and collecting royalties I might give it some thought.

Do you see any trace of Nazi-ism in Wagner's or Pfitzner's music? Please, please, please be honest.
I compose music because I must give expression to my feelings, just as I talk because I must give utterance to my thoughts. --- Rachmaninoff

Offline North Star

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17314
  • Location: Oulu, Finland
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #55 on: January 07, 2019, 01:09:17 PM »
The point about naïveté is important I agree, but it applies to more than just Webern. Lots of people were sympathetic to Hitler, and even more to Mussolini, before their true nature became evident/undeniable. People are often duped by monsters. (A famous, rather sinister example, is Hjalmar Schacht. He was tried and acquitted at Nuremberg. He was a nasty piece of work, and supported some Nazi nastiness for sure, and early on was a Nazi cabinet minister. But he fell away from them as things progressed.) I see Webern as supporting Hitler because of his successes, and try8ng/managing to fool himself about his real nature.
True, and had Schönberg not been Jewish he might have had a similar relationship with Nazis, recalling his remark about dodecaphony and the domination of German music.
"Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it." - Confucius

My photographs on Flickr

Offline Florestan

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17482
  • Location: Bucharest, Romania
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #56 on: January 07, 2019, 01:49:11 PM »
True, and had Schönberg not been Jewish he might have had a similar relationship with Nazis, recalling his remark about dodecaphony and the domination of German music.

The said remark is conveniently glossed over....  :laugh:

That the Nazis prohibited and ridiculed any contemporary, modern, atonal, dodecaphonic music is a myth --- but myths die hard...  :laugh:

I compose music because I must give expression to my feelings, just as I talk because I must give utterance to my thoughts. --- Rachmaninoff

Offline North Star

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 17314
  • Location: Oulu, Finland
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #57 on: January 07, 2019, 03:42:20 PM »
The said remark is conveniently glossed over....  :laugh:
Alright, if you want details. ;)
Quote
In the early 1920s, he worked at evolving a means of order that would make his musical texture simpler and clearer. This resulted in the “method of composing with twelve tones which are related only with one another,” in which the twelve pitches of the octave (unrealized compositionally) are regarded as equal, and no one note or tonality is given the emphasis it occupied in classical harmony. He regarded it as the equivalent in music of Albert Einstein’s discoveries in physics. Schoenberg announced it characteristically, during a walk with his friend Josef Rufer, when he said, “I have made a discovery which will ensure the supremacy of German music for the next hundred years.”
https://courses.lumenlearning.com/music/chapter/arnold-schoenberg/

That the Nazis prohibited and ridiculed any contemporary, modern, atonal, dodecaphonic music is a myth --- but myths die hard...  :laugh:
Oh, can you show that it is a myth?
"Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it." - Confucius

My photographs on Flickr

Offline Mirror Image

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 46446
  • Claude Debussy (1862 - 1918)
  • Location: Northeast GA, US
  • Currently Listening to:
    ...Mist floating above the water...
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #58 on: January 12, 2019, 08:47:38 PM »
These types of concerts never have had much, if any, appeal to me. I mean it’s fine if you like the Strauss family’s music, but, personally, I’d rather spend a gloomy day with Shostakovich or Schnittke (not that I’m deriding either composer’s general aesthetic --- just making a point) than have to watch another Vienna New Year’s concert.
“Works of art make rules; rules do not make works of art.” - Claude Debussy

Offline shirime

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 85
  • Location: Melbourne, Australia
Re: Vienna PO's New Year's Concert --- As Fake and as Anti-Viennese as it gets
« Reply #59 on: January 13, 2019, 01:04:19 AM »
Just imagine, if you can, Johann Strauss I or Johann Strauss II or Josef Strauss conducting with a baton instead of a violin, the audience formally dressed, stiff and still, listening in awe as if they were listening to a Bruckner symphony / Wagner opera, waiting for being told and conducted when to applaud...

I say, claim and maintain that the Vienna PO's New Year's Concert is nothing else than the Brucknerization of the Waltz, ie an abomination.

This is probably the one thing Florestan and I agree on tbh.