Monthly Archives: October 2013

The equaliser

If I was given the opportunity to ask Igor Stravinsky one question I would ask him if he really intended to use the strings in Le sacre du printemps as percussion or if that’s just an invention from others. Because, honestly, I think that’s not true at all. He does use rhythmic blocs of chords as melodic material, but that doesn’t have anything to do with percussion. Most people accept what they are told and don’t look further. But if you do look further you find that the actual “strangeness” in the string part is that they are not the main group. All instruments are equalised. Even though they often work within their own group (woodwind, metal, strings) the have the same function within the score.

Mister Stravinsky, I keep running into you over and over again. Music history, counterpoint, analysis, instrumentation. But I absolutely don’t mind. There’s still a lot to learn about the ‘Bach of the 20th century’.

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