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Arnold Schoenberg comes to you live from Vienna

He once predicted that milkmen would whistle his tunes. Sadly, there are no milk deliveries any more, but a live global stream from Vienna would pretty much meet the composer’s expectations. It’s conducted tomorrow by Zubin Mehta and marks the 15th anniversary of the Arnold Schoenberg Centre, founded after his archives were shamefully thrown onto the street in 1997 by the University of Southern California.

Here’s what you need to know about tomorrow’s broadcast:

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Saturday, March 16th at 19:30 CEST:  Schönberg Fest with Zubin Mehta live webcast from Vienna on www.sonostream.tv 

The Schönberg Fest in March celebrates 15 years of the Arnold Schönberg Center in Vienna, which opened its doors for the first time in March 1998.   The concert also celebrates the 25th Anniversary of the Ensemble Wiener Collage.

This gala concert will take place on Saturday March 16th at 19:30 CEST  and includes the highlight of the Schönberg Fest: a concert with Maestros Zubin Mehta and René Staar conducting members of the Vienna Philharmonic and the Ensemble Wiener Collage. This special program includes the famous Chamber Symphony op. 9 by Arnold Schönberg as well as new works by Stankovski, Sánchez-Chiong, Deutsch, Wysocki, and Staar, many of which are world premieres.  Maestro Zubin Mehta is conducting this concert in recognition of his first public concert in Vienna (Brahms-Saal, Musikverein) as a student of Hans Swarowski in 1958 with the same Schoenberg piece.

Members of the Vienna Philharmonic
Ensemble Wiener Collage
Stefan Neubauer, clarinet • Johannes Marian, piano
Zubin Mehta, conductor • René Staar, conductor

Program:
Arnold Schönberg Kammersymphonie für fünfzehn Soloinstrumente op. 9
Alexander Stankovski Spiegel-Maske-Gesicht für Kammerensemble
Jorge Sánchez-Chiong Three studies für Klarinette solo
Bernd Richard Deutsch Variationen für Klarinette, Akkordeon, Violine, Viola und Kontrabass
Zdzisław Wysocki Etüde 7 op. 54 Nr. 7; Etüde 102 op. 69 Nr. 18 (World Premiere)
René Staar 8 Bagatellen auf den Namen György Ligeti op. 14/3a Nr. 1 und 8

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Comments

  1. paul myers says:

    Norman,
    We still have a milkman every day in Brighton Marina, but his Schoenberg is a little limited (or maybe his whistling).

    • Work on him, Paul. Start with Moses und Aron.

      • paul myers says:

        Norman,
        You remind me of a time when (recording some songs for soprano and chamber orchestra in the complete works of Anton Webern) Jimmy Galway placed a hand on Pierre Boulez’ shoulder and, with a ripe accent that I won’t try to reproduce, said: “You know, Pierre, I like this music – such lovely tunes!” Pierre smiled vaguely.

  2. I didn’t know about the archives. I’m horrified!

    ‘Transfigured Night’ for the milkman.

  3. Martin Bookspan says:

    Paul! Great to find you here. How are things with you?

  4. Petros Linardos says:

    If only a serialist composer wrote an opera on “The postman always rings twice” …

    I believe the oft told story goes back to a quote on Webern, from Karl Amadeus Hartmann, which can be loosely translated as “He recently told me, in all honesty, ‘one day the mailman will whistle my melodies’.” *

    Ever since I heard another version of that story, 30 years ago, I have been paying close attention to my mailmen’s musical habits. I have since lived in Austria, Greece and the US. No luck, so far.

    * “Neulich sagte er mir, in aller Treuherzigkeit: ‘Meine Melodien wird noch einmal der Briefträger pfeifen’”; ,Karl Amadeus Hartmann, “Lektionen bei Anton Webern” in “Kleine Schriften”, quoted in page 17 of http://books.google.com/books?id=6dEobkUPbmUC&pg=PA17&lpg=PA17&dq=Brieftr%C3%A4ger+Karl+Amadeus+Hartmann&source=bl&ots=A6V8i1FK7Q&sig=CkWHwO8t6PfOQN-j9nF43OVY5RE&hl=en&sa=X&ei=NJFDUfHrA4vj4AOtmIHICQ&ved=0CDAQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=Brieftr%C3%A4ger%20Karl%20Amadeus%20Hartmann&f=false

    I remembered the story being about mailmen. So Not to spoil the story, but I couldn’t resist some hasty

  5. Petros Linardos says:

    If only a serialist composer wrote an opera on “The postman always rings twice” …

    I believe the oft told story goes back to a quote on Webern, from Karl Amadeus Hartmann, which can be loosely translated as “He recently told me, in all honesty, ‘one day the mailman will whistle my melodies’.” *

    Ever since I heard another version of that story, 30 years ago, I have been paying close attention to my mailmen’s musical habits. I have since lived in Austria, Greece and the US. No luck, so far.

    * “Neulich sagte er mir, in aller Treuherzigkeit: ‘Meine Melodien wird noch einmal der Briefträger pfeifen’”; ,Karl Amadeus Hartmann, “Lektionen bei Anton Webern” in “Kleine Schriften”, quoted in page 17 of http://books.google.com/books?id=6dEobkUPbmUC&pg=PA17&lpg=PA17&dq=Brieftr%C3%A4ger+Karl+Amadeus+Hartmann&source=bl&ots=A6V8i1FK7Q&sig=CkWHwO8t6PfOQN-j9nF43OVY5RE&hl=en&sa=X&ei=NJFDUfHrA4vj4AOtmIHICQ&ved=0CDAQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=Brieftr%C3%A4ger%20Karl%20Amadeus%20Hartmann&f=false

  6. David Boxwell says:

    The Brettl-Lieder are eminently catchy, especially “Gigerlette” and “Aus dem Spiegel von Arkadien.”

  7. Speaking of Schoenberg as teacher in Southern California, even John Cage studied with him. Here’s an excerpt from one of Cage’s writings.
    ( The web address for the article is: http://www.newalbion.com/artists/cagej/autobiog.html )

    “…..Later when I returned to California, in the Pacific Palisades, I wrote songs with texts by Gertrude Stein and choruses from The Persians of Aeschylus. I had studied Greek in high school. These compositions were improvised at the piano. The Stein songs are, so to speak, transcriptions from a repetitive language to a repetitive music. I met Richard Buhlig who was the first pianist to play the Opus II of Schoenberg. Though he was not a teacher of composition, he agreed to take charge of my writing of music. From him I went to Henry Cowell and at Cowell’s suggestion (based on my twenty-five tone compositions, which, though not serial, were chromatic and required the expression in a single voice of all twenty-five tones before any one of them was repeated) to Adolph Weiss in preparation for studies with Arnold Schoenberg. When I asked Schoenberg to teach me, he said, “You probably can’t afford my price.” I said, “Don’t mention it; I don’t have any money.” He said, “Will you devote your life to music?” This time I said “Yes.” He said he would teach me free of charge. I gave up painting and concentrated on music. After two years it became clear to both of us that I had no feeling for harmony. For Schoenberg, harmony was not just coloristic: it was structural. It was the means one used to distinguish one part of a composition from another. Therefore he said I’d never be able to write music. “Why not?” “You’ll come to a wall and won’t be able to get through.” “Then I’ll spend my life knocking my head against that wall.”

    I became an assistant to Oskar Fischinger, the film maker, to prepare myself to write the music for one of his films. He happened to say one day, “Everything in the world has its own spirit which can be released by setting it into vibration.” I began hitting, rubbing everything, listening, and then writing percussion music, and playing it with friends. These compositions were made up of short motives expressed either as sound or as silence of the same length, motives that were arranged on the perimeter of a circle on which one could proceed forward or backward. I wrote without specifying the instruments, using our rehearsals to try out found or rented instruments. I didn’t rent many because I had little money. I did library research work for my father or for lawyers. I was married to Xenia Andreyevna Kashevaroff who was studying bookbinding with Hazel Dreis. Since we all lived in a big house my percussion music was played in the evening by the bookbinders. I invited Schoenberg to one of our performances. “I am not free.” “Can you come a week later?” “No, I am not free at any time.”

    The JSTOR site also has an article “John Cage’s Studies with Schoenberg” at: http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/3051946?uid=3739768&uid=2129&uid=2&uid=70&uid=4&uid=3739256&sid=21101984424887

    I confess, it’s been more fun reading Cage than listening to his work, except perhaps when heard in conjunction Merce Cunningham’s choreography.

    I gather Schoenberg “was not free” to hear him with Merce. (nor the milkman?)

  8. Norman, thank you for posting the link for this concert here.

    I watched this concert up on the web yesterday and thought it was a superb concert. Kudos to musicians in the concert and to everyone who made it possible to be seen around the world.

  9. I never fail to be amused by this affectionate ‘commercial’ regarding Schoenberg, and his 12-tone system.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LACCAF04wSs

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