By Alfred Schnittke
This compilation assembles formerly released and unpublished essays by means of Schnittke and supplementations them with an interview with cellist and student Alexander Ivashkin. The e-book is illustrated with musical examples, lots of them in Schnittke’s personal hand. In A Schnittke Reader, the composer speaks of his lifestyles, his works, different composers, performers, and a extensive variety of issues in 20th-century song. the amount is rounded out with reflections by means of a few of Schnittke’s contemporaries.
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Extra resources for A Schnittke Reader (Russian Music Studies)
There was a time when I simply did not know what to do: I had to drop either one or the other. My way out was not just on the surface, it lay at the heart of the problem, because what I did for the cinema was serious, not mere hack-work. In my early years as a composer I was even interested in writing real marches and waltzes, not stylized ones. It gave me a certain personal satisfaction. Then I reached a critical point when I no longer knew how to proceed. ” IVASHKIN: It seems to me, as far as allusions are concerned, that it is your Third Symphony that more closely resembles Luciano Berio’s Symphony, not your First.
How do the conception of the form and meaning of the whole work come to you? Are you doing the writing, or is it some higher power writing through you? Do you make any conscious effort to ensure that an idea appears in a particular form? SCHNITTKE: This is like so many other things. When you start talking about it, all your attempts to explain it in more or less precise terms are a complete failure. But you still have to try to explain, you still have to try to come closer to what you cannot actually grasp, in the hope that this time you might manage to get a little closer to it.
Volkonsky’s work was composed earlier, but this does not mean that Sun of the Incas is inferior. A long time ago Yuri Butsko12 showed me his Polyphonic Concerto, a work unique of its kind. It is a composition for four keyboard instruments in every possible combination. It also has a strictly worked-out system based on the repetition of tetrachords, all formed in the same way. But, in addition, as the notes get higher, flats predominate; and as they get lower, sharps. A kind of endless arch is formed.
A Schnittke Reader (Russian Music Studies) by Alfred Schnittke