Critical Entertainments: Music Old and New

By Charles Rosen

An terribly talented musician and author, Charles Rosen is a peerless commentator at the heritage and function of song. Critical Entertainments brings jointly a number of the essays that experience verified him as probably the most influential and eloquent voices within the box of track in our time.

These essays disguise a extensive diversity of musical types, historic classes, and issues--from Bach via Brahms to Carter and Schoenberg, from contrapuntal keyboard song to opera, from functionality practices to tune background as a self-discipline. They revisit Rosen's favourite matters and pursue a few much less widely used paths. They courtroom controversy (with powerful evaluations approximately functionality on ancient tools, the so-called New Musicology, and the alleged "death" of classical track) and supply enlightenment on matters as different as tune dictionaries and the aesthetics of degree fright. All are unified by means of Rosen's abiding matters and incomparable type. In sum, Critical Entertainments is a treasury of the colossal studying, wit, and perception that we have got come to anticipate from this notable author. it is going to pride all track lovers.

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Mozart equally spoke back the aged tenor who complained that during the quartet of Idomeneo, he couldn't produce the sustained, even tones for which he was once recognized: "In a quartet, the notes could be even more spoken than sung. " It used to be satirically within the ensembles, that are the main complex buildings of natural tune, that Mozart completely discovered Beaumarchais's operatic excellent. bankruptcy SEVEN Radical, traditional Mozart on the commencing of the subsequent essay, the error of calling Joseph II the emperor Franz Joseph is so egregious that i've got enable it stand within the textual content within the desire that the general public humiliation will make me extra cautious sooner or later. numerous readers wrote to sign different error. Mozart's sonatas have been written for a queen, no longer an empress, of Prussia. The composer who can have stimulated Mozart was once Piccinni, now not Puccini: i've got corrected this error, for which i'm blameless. (Typesetters don't believe that there has been a composer known as Piccinni till one has corrected this a number of instances in evidence I bear in mind making this correction 3 successive instances in a ebook released by way of Faber and Faber, and basically succeeded in enforcing it through writing it huge in crimson. ) John Yohalem kindly remarked, between different issues, that E. T. A. Hoffman replaced one in every of his heart names to Amadeus from Wilhelm, now not Friedrich. A. D. Roberts jogged my memory that it used to be Edward Fitzgerald, now not Bernard Shaw, who acknowledged: "People won't think that Mozart will be robust, simply because he's so appealing. " i'm yes that Shaw quoted this someplace. A few years prior to Mozart's loss of life in 1791, the emperor of Austria, Franz Joseph, bought the stopover at of a extraordinary yet dull composer, Karl Ditters von Dittersdorf, and requested him what he considered Mozart's compositions. In his memories, Dittersdorf stated the dialog: Dittersdorf he's certainly one of many maximum unique geniuses, and i've recognized before no composer who possesses such an unbelievable wealth of principles. I may still want that he weren't so spendthrift with it. He doesn't enable the listener to respire; for rarely have we perceived one attractive notion, that one other extra appropriate already initially written in 1991 as a evaluation of Robert L. Marshall, ed. , Mozart Speaks: perspectives on tune, Musicians, and the area; Ivan Nagel, Autonomy and Mercy: Reflections on Mozart's Operas (translated through Marion Faber and Ivan Nagel); and Daniel Heartz, Mozart's Operas. 86 serious Entertainments appears to be like at the heels of the previous, and this keeps with out ceasing until eventually, after all, we will keep none of those beauties in our reminiscence. Emperor: In his level works, the singers have quite often complained of a unmarried fault, that he frequently drowns them out together with his complete accompaniment. D: That surprises me ... E: a while in the past I made a comparability among Mozart and Haydn. examine them your self, in order that i will be able to see no matter if yours consents with mine. D: (after a pause) Will your Majesty permit me to place one other query? E: pass forward. D: How might your majesty evaluate Klopstock and Gellert [two of the main recognized modern poets)?

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