The concept of a European soul that creates reflections of itself. Letter (part 4)

crownToday is the anniversary of my father’s birth.

Here is the fourth and final extract from my letter on “new Music”. The rest was specific to the people I was addressing last year.

The concept of a European soul that creates reflections of itself

About ten years ago, in Venice (with my teacher Ernesto Rubin de Cervin, to refer to him once more), I was in St. Mark’s for a concert given by a German orchestra and choir. They played Wolfgang Rihm, Alois Zimmerman and Schoenberg’s “Prelude to the Genesis Suite”. I said afterwards to Ernesto “Schoenberg is the Crown Jewels of Europe”. That was enough to create an understanding between us at that moment. If I have to dispense with the metaphor, I’d say that the work is at one with the spirit that created us as we are – small mirrors of a European soul. I could have said it of Machaut, or of the Grote Markt in Brussels but instead I said it of Schoenberg. It was more of an exclamation actually, as Schoenberg gets such a bad press you can start to forget what a precious jewel he is for you………

So with that conviction I have a right appreciation of Schoenberg and see what logically must follow from that. Perform him! Listen to him!

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