Re: Three poignant questions

Philly the Kid (
Fri, 5 Dec 1997 19:09:15 -0800

I agree with this follow-up -- although I think I can imagine the
presumptions going on and the loaded questions -- so perhasp I can respond
to what I think is there...?

>On Fri, 5 Dec 1997, Peter Mueller wrote:
>> 1/ each and every composer has the right to compose at least one
>> masterpiece in her or his life; is that true?

If by this you mean that many composers have made a great piece but were
undistinguished the rest of the way, or that many composers have made great
pieces on par with so called masterworks -- I would agree.

>"Right"? "Masterpiece"? "Composer"? What might you mean by these terms?
>Who determines or grants them? What is this question asking?

>> 2/ we should not underestimate the quality of the so called Western
>> classical music; is that true?
If by this you mean, that current trends indicate that Western European Art
music is on the wane, particularly the teaching styles and repertoire of
the 18th and 19 th century...and that with current technologies, tools, and
different ways of looking at music there could be an over simplification or
reduction or minimizing of importance of that body of musical history --

>"We"? "should"? "underestimate"? "quality"? See above.

>> 3/ the development of contemporary classical music (and art in general) in
>> the Western world has been stalled by government/business bureaucracies; is
>> that true?

Well, the biggest issue with so called "contemporary classical music" is
that the music no longer represents any real folks in the world, nor an
aristocracy. It is true that lack of government and private funding, and a
de-emphasis on creative pursuits in education have left a largely
illiterate populous and that for the most part, the "high art music" of
today is foreign and difficult to access for most average citizens who
mostly enjoy pop forms, and that the last of the "high brow" concert goers
are still holding on tight to Beethoven and Taichcofsy (sp?) etc. ... It is
also true that the elitist and guildsman trade union mentality of
orchestral musicians has made it an unwelcoming place for many young people
with a passion for music and creative spirit. In this sense the beaurocracy
has had some negative impact.

>"development"? "stalled"?

>Obviously, these questions are asked in an attempt to shoot down some
>sort of straw man position. Perhaps if they were worded more
>intelligibly, we might know what position that was.


>That someone might think that these statements, as currently worded,
>could be judged "true" or "false" is somewhat frightening and disappointing.

Idiotic would also be apropos. Could this be a bad translation from another