Eduard Hanslick on Puccini’s “La Bohème” at Vienna’s Court Opera, conducted by Gustav Mahler

Hanslick, by offering his negative points on La Bohème offers startling insight into early Modernism before departure from tonality began to define Austro-German Modernism from the century’s second decade.

John Mauceri’s book, “The War on Music”

A review of John Mauceri’s history of music post-war

Radu Lupu 30. November 1945 – 17. April 2022

In a previous life, somewhere around 1977, I was brought to Decca, where for the next two years or so, I was the assistant producer on a number of opera recordings. The first… Continue reading

The Winterberg Puzzle’s Darker and Lighter Shades

Banned first by Hitler, then later by the Sudeten German Music Institute – Hans Winterberg, Theresienstadt survivor and the missing link in Czech music

Exilarte in the time of Covid-19

Despite Covid, the work of the Exilarte Centre carries on – a report on what’s been happening over the past year

Jewish Music Identity and the Crisis of Exile: Part 3 “DAS HOHELIED” AND “THE SONG OF SONGS: A CASE STUDY

This follows parts 1 and 2 in dealing with the crisis of Jewish identity by exile composers. In part 3, we take a case study of two composers as they set “The Song of Solomon”, known by one composer as “Song of Songs” and by the other as “Das Hohelied”.

THE MUSIC OF INNER-RETURN: PART 2

There is another important element that illustrates “inner return”: it’s the concept of “return”, when composers prominent as pre-war modernists return to old-fashioned concepts such as symphonies, sonatas and string quartets. Of these… Continue reading

The Music of Inner Return: Part 1

Apologies are due for having neglected this blog for so many months.  There has been an inordinate amount of activity at the exil.arte Centre with acquisitions of several important estates, a symposium which… Continue reading

“Vom Jüdischen Schicksal” – The Jewish Cultural League, or Der Kulturbund

(Richard Fuchs’ “Vom Jüdischen Schicksal”, written for the Kulturbund. World Premiere in Wellington New Zealand, 2014: Jenny Wollerman, Christian Thurston, Cantoris Choir, NZSM Orchestra, Donald Maurice – conductor) One of the most unsettling… Continue reading

The False Myths and True Genius of Erich Wolfgang Korngold

1897 was an eventful year for music in Vienna: Johannes Brahms died and Gustav Mahler took over the Imperial Opera; the anti-Semitic Karl Lueger was elected mayor; the Eleven-year-old Ernst Toch decided to… Continue reading

Eric(h) Zeisl (1905-1959): The One Who (Nearly) Got Away

My article on Eric Zeisl from 2014 updated with its formerly corrupted audio files replaced.

Mark Ludwig’s book “Our Will to Live”

Mark Ludwigs astounding restitution of Terezín’s musical legacy

“The Fractured Self” – Selected German letters of the Australian-born Violinist Alma Moodie, 1918-1943

The correspondence of one of the most inspiring performers of her day – the muse of many composers and a talent most likely smashed on the rocks of history.

Julius Korngold’s Article on “The Modern” in Music, 1901: Richard Strauss, Gustav Mahler

A fascinating examination of “the Modern” in music in 1901 by Julius Korngold, one of the foremost writers and critics in Vienna at the turn of the century.

Jewish Music Identity and the Crisis of Exile: Part 2

In an article in the Los Angeles Times from October 2 1938,Rabbi Jacob Sonderling describes his meeting with Ernst Toch, Boris Morros, the actor Leopold Jessner and the story behind Toch’s setting of the Haggadah in his Cantata of the Bitter Herbs op. 65. Before this, however, Sonderling relates his desire to renew the music of the liturgy in a story that resonates with the idea of the prodigal son: