Dynamism and drama... evidently born to be a conductor.”  Peter Bloch/La Razón (NYC)

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OLIVER HILMES "Cosima Wagner - The Lady of Bayreuth"

(Translated by Stewart Spencer; Published by Yale University Press)

"'The fact that the performances this year were so perfect is due in no small way to the active intervention of Frau Wagner,’ Hermann Levi wrote to his father, adding that ‘after each performance, the director, Herr Fuchs, and I received detailed written criticisms, and her remarks were so pertinent and so perceptive and contained so much important information about the art of performing the work that in the  space of these few days I learnt more than in twenty years of working as a conductor.'”                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Pg. 163

RICHARD COUNT DU MOULIN-ECKART "Cosima Wagner"

(Translated by Catherine Alison Philips; Published by Alfred A. Knopf)

COSIMA WAGNER quoting RICHARD WAGNER re: "Parsifal":

“…it was like an utterance of genius losing itself in remote distances of the intellect when he spoke of the instrumentation [of “Parsifal”], saying that it must be absolutely different from that of the other works: it must be “like cloud-formations, which separate and then unite again.”                  Vol. II, Pg. 764

RICHARD COUNT DU MOULIN-ECKART "Cosima Wagner"

(Translated by Catherine Alison Philips; Published by Alfred A. Knopf)

RICHARD WAGNER re: Dürer and Sebastian Bach:

“They are both to be regarded as the conclusion of the Middle Ages.  For it is nonsense to regard Bach as being one of us.  Both are equipped with a rich imagination, full of mystery, lacking beauty, but achieving the sublime, which transcends all beauty.”                                                                Vol. I, Pg. 401

CARUSO AND TETRAZZINI "On the Art of Singing"

(Amazon Print-on-Demand, from Middletown, DE)

LUISA TETRAZZINI "The Art of Singing"

“In order to ensure proper breathing capacity it is understood that the clothing must be absolutely loose around the chest and also across the lower part of the back for one should breathe with the back of the lungs as well as with the front.”                                                                                          Pg. 4-5

“Open the throat wide and start your note by the pressure breath.  The physical sensation should be first an effort on the part of the diaphragm to press the air up against the chest box, then the sensation of a perfectly open throat, and lastly, the sensation that the air is passing freely into the cavities of the head.”                                                                                                                                   Pg. 6

CARUSO AND TETRAZZINI "On the Art of Singing"

(Amazon Print-on-Demand, from Middletown, DE)

LUISA TETRAZZINI "The Art of Singing"

“In an excess of enthusiasm the young singer attempts to develop the high notes and make them sound – in her own ears, at all events – as big as the middle voice.  The pure head tone sounds small and feeble to the singer herself, and she would rather use the chest quality, but the head tone has the piercing, penetrating quality which makes it tell in a big hall, while the middle register, unless used in its right place, makes the voice muffled, heavy and lacking in vibrancy.  Though to the singer the tone may seem immense, in reality it lacks resonance.”                                                                           Pg. 13-14

“A singer must never cease listening to herself intelligently and never neglect cultivating the head tone or over-tone of the voice, which is its salvation, for it means vibrancy, carrying power and youth to a voice.  Without it the finest voice soon becomes worn and off pitch.  Used judiciously, it will preserve a voice into old age.”                                                                                                                                    Pg. 14

CARUSO AND TETRAZZINI "On the Art of Singing"

(Amazon Print-on-Demand, from Middletown, DE)

LUISA TETRAZZINI "The Art of Singing"

“Now a singer can never allow the facial expression to alter the position of the jaw or mouth.”     Pg. 19

“The mouth must remain the same, and the jaw must ever be relaxed, whether the song is one of deep intensity or a merry scale of laughter.“                                                                                                   Pg. 19

CARUSO AND TETRAZZINI "On the Art of Singing"

(Amazon Print-on-Demand, from Middletown, DE)

LUISA TETRAZZINI "The Art of Singing"

“The more one sees and studies people with sympathy, the more points one gets for the study of life, which is embodied in the art one gives forth.  But it is sympathy with one’s fellow beings and kindly observation which help one here, never the critical attitude.”                                                              Pg. 26

CARUSO AND TETRAZZINI "On the Art of Singing"

(Amazon Print-on-Demand, from Middletown, DE)

ENRICO CARUSO "The Art of Singing"

…a singer will know from trials and experience just the proper position of the tongue and larynx to produce most effectively a certain note on the scale, yet he will have come by this knowledge not by theory and reasoning, but simply oft repeated attempts, and the knowledge he has come by will be valuable to him only, for somebody else would produce the same note equally well, but in quite a different way.”                                                                                                                                            Pg. 10

CARUSO AND TETRAZZINI "On the Art of Singing"

(Amazon Print-on-Demand, from Middletown, DE)

ENRICO CARUSO "The Art of Singing"

To have the attack true and pure one must consciously try to open the throat not only in front, but from behind, for the throat is the door through which the voice must pass, and if it is not sufficiently open it is useless...”                                                                                                                                   Pg. 12

“It must not be imagined that to open the mouth wide will do the same for the throat.  If one is well versed in the art, one can open the throat perfectly without a perceptible opening of the mouth, merely by the power of respiration.”                                                                                                       Pg. 12

"In the matter of taking high notes one should remember that their purity and ease of production depend very much on the way the preceding notes leading up to them are sung.  Beginning in the lower register and attacking the ascending notes well back, a balance must be maintained all the way up, so that the highest note receives the benefit and support of the original position of the throat, and there is no danger, consequently, of the throat closing and pinching the quality of the top notes."   Pg. 14

CARUSO AND TETRAZZINI "On the Art of Singing"

(Amazon Print-on-Demand, from Middletown, DE)

ENRICO CARUSO "The Art of Singing"

Remember also to sing within yourself, as it were – to feel the tones all through your being; otherwise your singing will possess no sentiment, emotion or authority.”                                                                                   Pg. 14

“… the artistic use of the ‘half voice’ [mezza voce] is a very valuable adjunct in all singing.  It may be defined simply as the natural voice produced softly, but with an extra strength of breath.  It is this breathy quality, however – which one must be careful never to exaggerate or the tone will not carry – that gives that velvety effect to the tone that is so delightful.”                                                                                                                    Pg. 14

CARUSO AND TETRAZZINI "On the Art of Singing"

(Amazon Print-on-Demand, from Middletown, DE)

ENRICO CARUSO "The Art of Singing"

The right accents in music depend very much on the exact time.  Tone artists, while still making all their desired 'effects' in apparent freedom of style and delivery, nevertheless do not ever lose sight of the time.  Those who do are usually apt to be amateurs and are not to be imitated.”                       Pg. 18

“A singer endowed with a small voice or even one of not very pleasing quality can give more pleasure than a singer possessing a big, impressive voice, but no diction.”                                                       Pg. 19

GIUSEPPE TARTINI "Treatise on the Ornaments of Music"

(Translated and Edited by Sol Babitz)

(Reprinted from The Journal of Research in Music Education, Vol. IV, No. 2 (Fall 1956))

"Concerning the Vibrato
or Tremblement, in French
"

"...one can produce this vibration artificially on the violin, viola, and 'cello with a finger held on the string while the vibrato is impressed on the finger with the force of the wrist, without the finger leaving the string, despite its being lifted slightly.  If the vibrato of the finger is slow, the undulation which is the vibrato of the sound will be slow; if it is fast, the undulation will be fast.  One can accordingly increase the speed of the undulation little by little, by starting slowly and rendering it faster by degrees."                                                                                                                                     Pg. 85

                                                                                                       (page numbers beginning with "75" on the Babitz Introduction)

JOSEF LHEVINNE "Basic Principles in Pianoforte Playing"

(Dover Publications, Inc.)

“Certain things cannot be skipped in the early lessons without appearing to the enormous disadvantage of the student in later years.  Possibly here is the greatest waste in music teaching, poor or careless instruction in the earlier years."                                                                                                                                                     Pg.  2

“Why is much playing inaccurate?  Largely because of mental uncertainty.”                                       Pg. 33

“Often students struggle with difficult passages and declare them impossible, when a mere change of the hand position, such as raising or lowering the wrist or slanting the hand laterally, would solve the problem.”                                                                                                                                                    Pg. 34

“Do not think you have been practicing if you have played a single note with your mind on anything else.

“When you practice in the right spirit you don’t know what it is to get tired.”                                     Pg. 44

JOSEF LHEVINNE "Basic Principles in Pianoforte Playing"

(Dover Publications, Inc.)

“The virtuoso whose existence depends upon moving great audiences by musical values knows that rests are of vital importance. Very often the effect of the rest is even greater than that of the notes.”                        Pg. 3​

“…the player can actually think moods and conditions into his arm and fingers.  His mental attitude means a great deal in the quality of his playing."                                                                                                                   Pg. 26

                                                                             

“Try practicing for beauty as well as practicing for technique… I am confident that centuries of practice are wasted throughout the world because the element of beauty is cast aside.                                                Pg. 39

JOSEF LHEVINNE "Basic Principles in Pianoforte Playing"

(Dover Publications, Inc.)

​“In all his [Rubenstein’s] forte passages he employed the weight of his body and shoulders… Rubenstein could be heard over the entire orchestra playing fortissimo.  The piano seemed to peal out gloriously as the king of the entire orchestra; but there was never any suggestion of noise, no disagreeable pounding.

Why no noise?  Because Rubenstein’s wrists were always free from stiffness in such passages and he took advantage of the natural shock absorber at the wrist which we all possess… his playing assumed a power and a grandeur I have never heard since…”                                                                                                     Pg. 31

There is a vast difference between the ordinary amateur hammering on the keyboard for force and the more artistic means of drawing the tone from the piano by weight or pressure properly controlled or administered.”                                                                                                                                                    Pg. 31

GIUSEPPE TARTINI "A Letter from the Late Signor Tartini to Signora Maddalena Lombardini (now Signora Sirmen) Published as an Important Lesson to Performers on the Violin"

(Published by Franklin Classics of Creative Media Partners; Translated by Charles Burney)

"Your first study, therefore, should be the true manner of holding, balancing and pressing the bow lightly, but steadily, upon the string; in such a manner as that it shall seem to breathe the first tone it gives, which must proceed from the friction of the string, and not from percussion, as by a blow given with a hammer upon it."                                                                                                                             Pg. 2

MUZIO CLEMENTI "Introduction to the Art of Playing on the Pianoforte"

(Amazon Print-on-Demand, from Columbia, SC)

"N.B. The second part of a piece, if very long, is seldom repeated; notwithstanding the DOTS."      Pg. 12

"N.B.  The LOWEST note of EVERY sort of turn is MOSTLY a semitone."                                               Pg. 16

LEOPOLD MOZART "Treatise on the Fundamental Principles of Violin Playing"

(Oxford University Press; Translated by Editha Knocker)

“Here lies really the greatest error committed by masters as well as pupils.  The first often have not the patience to wait, or they allow themselves to be led astray by the disciple… But alas!... He who does not, right from the beginning, become thoroughly familiar with the position of the notes through frequent playing… will always be in danger of playing out of tune and with uncertainty.”                Pg. 61

LEOPOLD MOZART "Treatise on the Fundamental Principles of Violin Playing"

(Oxford University Press; Translated by Editha Knocker)

"Time makes melody, therefore time is the soul of music."                                                                  Pg. 30

"Singing is at all times the aim of every instrumentalist..."                                                                 Pg. 102

“We must therefore so lead the bow from strong to weak that at all times a good, even, singing and, so to speak, round and fat tone can be heard…”                                                                                       Pg. 100

H. L. MENCKEN "A Mencken Chrestomathy [Choice Writings]"

(Vintage Books, a Division of Random House)

​“Schubert paid the price that all artists pay for trying to improve upon the world made by the gods.  'My compositions,' he once wrote in his diary, 'spring from my sorrow.'"                                                       Pg. 528

"The life of an artist is a life of frustrations and disasters.  Storms rage endlessly within his own soul.  His quest is for the perfect beauty that is always elusive, always just beyond the sky-rim.

"He tries to contrive what the gods themselves have failed to contrive... often he falls short, and in his falling short there is agony almost beyond endurance."                                                                Pg. 528-29

 ROBERT DONINGTON "Baroque Music: Style and Performance - A Handbook"

(W.W. Norton & Company)

Style and performance in baroque music present certain problems due not only to neglect but also to misguided enthusiasms at various periods on the way down.  Romantic exaggerations have tended to be over-compensated by austere understatements no nearer to the spirit of the originals and considerably more inhibiting to our musicianly enjoyment."                                                                  Pg. 1

"We need not only an awareness of history and geography but a keen sense of musical appropriateness in applying any musicological evidence to any music.  If it does not end up sounding musicianly it is not acceptable musicologically, and we must think again."                                           Pg. 3

 

"It is valuable to be reminded in this manner that personality and temperament are legitimate variables.  We should never assume that there can only be one right and authentic way: that never was and is not now the case.  Flexibility is of the essence of good baroque interpretation."              Pg. 4

ROBERT DONINGTON "Baroque Music: Style and Performance - A Handbook"

(W.W. Norton & Company; Selected and Translated by Robert Donington )

THOMAS MACE (London, 1676) “...I was so transported, and wrapt up in High Contemplations, that there was no room left in my whole Man, viz. Body, Soul and Spirit, for any thing below Divine and Heavenly Raptures.  For in Musick, may any Humour, Conceit, or Passions (never so various) be Exprest."                 Pg. 2

FRANCESCO GEMINIANI (London, 1749) "...the performer will do justice to the composer if while his Imagination is warm and glowing he pours the same exalted Spirit into his own Performance."                   Pg. 2

FRIEDRICH WILHELM MARPURG (Berlin, 1749) "All musical expression has an affect or emotion for its foundation, demanding the utmost sensibility and the most felicitous powers of intuition."                         Pg. 3

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART "Mozart's Letters, Mozart's Life"

(W.W. Norton & Company; Selected and translated by Robert Spaethling)

(From Vienna, dated October 13, 1781, to his father in Salzburg)

“The Poets seem to me almost like trumpeters with their professional tricks! - if we composers always just follow our rules...we would come up with a kind of music that is just as useless as their librettos."                                                                                                                                                                             Pg. 289

 RUSSELL MARTIN "Beethoven’s Hair" 

(Broadway Books of Random House, Inc.)

Beethoven remained the world’s foremost ‘subjective’ composer, someone who had made music an instrument of self-expression in a way that would have been disastrous, even dangerous, without his purity of heart, his dramatic powers, his unique creative genius."                                                     Pg. 199

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART "Mozart's Letters, Mozart's Life"

(W.W. Norton & Company; Selected and translated by Robert Spaethling)

(From Vienna, dated April 11, 1791, to his father in Salzburg)

I forgot to tell you the other day that the Sinfonie was Magnifique, it was a complete Success—we had 40 violins—the wind instruments had been doubled—10 violas—10 contrabasses, 8 violoncellos, and 6 bassoons."                                                                                                                                                        Pg. 243

RICHARD WAGNER "Wagner on Conducting"

(Dover Publications, Inc.; Translation by Edward Dannreuther)

"Flat and empty pseudo-culture confronts us with a grin, and if we are not inclined to grin in return, as superficial observers of our civilization are wont to do, we may indeed grow seriously indignant.

"...it is a characteristic trait of pseudo-culture not to insist too much, not to enter deeply into a subject or, as the phrase goes, not to make much fuss about anything.  Thus whatever is high, great and deep, is treated as a matter of course, a commonplace, naturally at everybody's beck and call; something that can be readily acquired, and, if need be, imitated.  Again, that which is sublime, god-like, demonic, must not be dwelt upon, simply because it is impossible or difficult to copy."                                   Pg. 74

MAGGIE TEYTE "Debussy Remembered"

(Faber and Faber Limited; Compiled by Roger Nichols)

“For nine months I studied the role of Mélisande with the composer.  Debussy was a man of very few words, and thank goodness he didn’t find much to criticize.  This was probably due to my Mozartian upbringing, for I have always approached the interpretation of Debussy as though he were a modern Mozart.”                                                                                                                                                              Pg. 88

DANIEL BARENBOIM "Daniel Barenboim, Everything is Connected"

(Phoenix, an imprint of Orion Books, Ltd.)

"Music loses its power when the performer loses his curiosity and humility before it."                  Pg. 118

JOHANN JOACHIM QUANTZ "On Playing the Flute"

(Schirmer Books of Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc.; Translation by Edward R. Reilly)

"In an Adagio the notes that provide motion beneath the concertante [solo] part may be considered as half staccato, even if no little strokes stand above them, and hence a little pause may be observed after each note."                                                                                                                                      Pg. 232

DENNIS SHROCK "Performance Practices in the Baroque Era as related by primary sources"

(GIA Publications, Inc.)

SEVERO BONINI "Discourses and Rules on Music" (c. 1650)

"Signor Giovanbattista [Jacomelli] del Violino flourished as a violinist in Florence.  He was called 'del Violino' on account of the excellence of his smooth and long bowings, which in truth delighted the hearing supremely."                                                                                                                                Pg. 238

THOMAS MACE "Musick's Monument" (1676) (Part 3, Ch. 6 "Concerning the Viol and Musick in General")

"...attempt the Striking of your Strings but before you do That, Arm your self with Preparative Resolution to gain a Handsom-Smooth-Sweet-art Clear-Stroak or else Play not at all..."                                        Pg. 238

JEAN-JACQUES ROUSSEAU viola da gamba treatise (1687)

"The playing of accompaniment must be linked with long strokes of the Bow which follow one another without interruption of sound..."                                                                                                           Pg. 239

GEORG MUFFAT "Florilegium Secundum" (1698)

"The majority of German violinists and other players of upper string instruments hold the bow as the French do... pressing the hair with the thumb... The Italians, among others, differ in playing these upper instruments in that they never touch the hair... all the finest masters, regardless of their nationality, agree with each other that the longer, steadier, sweeter, and more even the bow-stroke is, the finer it is considered..."                                                                                                                     Pg. 239

AMY BEACH "Music's Ten Commandments as Given for Young Composers"

(Taken from "Amy Beach, Passionate Victorian" by Adrienne Fried Block; Oxford University Press)

"Remember that technic is valuable only as a means to an end.  You must first have something to say - something which demands expression from the depths of your soul.                                              Pg. 310

EVGENY KISSIN "Evgeny Kissin, Memoirs & Reflections"

(ForeEdge an imprint of University Press of New England)
(Compiled and Edited by Marina Arshinova; Translation by Arnold McMillin)

"... a few weeks later, when a week before the death of Claudio Arrau I played for him, he praised Anna Pavlovna, who was present, for teaching me to play forte in the same way that his teacher Martin Krause, a pupil of Liszt, had done: using the weight of all of the arm from the shoulder, so that it would sound noble and beautiful."                                                                                                          Pg. 55

JOHANN JOACHIM QUANTZ "On Playing the Flute"

(Schirmer Books of Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc.; Translation by Edward R. Reilly)

"To excite the different passions the dissonances must be struck more strongly than the consonances.  Consonances make the spirit peaceful and tranquil; dissonances, on the other hand, disturb it. Just as an uninterrupted pleasure, of whatever kind it might be, would weaken and exhaust our capacities for remaining sensitive to it... so a long series of pure consonances would eventually cause the ear distaste and displeasure, if they were not mingled now and then with disagreeable sounds such as those produced by dissonances.  The more, then, that a dissonance is distinguished and set off from the other notes in playing, the more it affects the ear. But the more displeasing the disturbance of our pleasure, the more agreeable the ensuing pleasure seems to us. Thus the harsher the dissonance, the more pleasing is its resolution.  Without this mixture, of agreeable and disagreeable sounds, music would no longer be able now to arouse the different passions instantly, now to still them again."   Pg. 254

DANIEL BARENBOIM "Daniel Barenboim, Everything is Connected"

(Phoenix, an imprint of Orion Books, Ltd.)

"A musician must possess the capacity to group notes."                                                                       Pg. 11

HANS VON BÜLOW  "Hans von Bülow, A Life and Times"

(Oxford University Press)

"In Art there are no trivial details."                                                                                                         Pg. 281

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