Monthly Archive: July, 2013

A portrait of Schoenberg by Kokoschka

Another striking plate from Hans Mermann’s 1928 book on ‘Modern Music’ was the 1924 portrait of Arnold Schoenberg painted by Oskar Kokoschka. The internet offers no information on where this portrait is held,… Continue reading

The Washington Post reviews Forbidden Music

Anne Midgette writes about ‘Forbidden Music’ – and is largely generous in her appraisal. Sadly, there are a number of minor-slips in my book that some people are picking up. My slip, at… Continue reading

A conference in Cairo

The accompanying photo shows Bartók, Hindemith and his wife, Erich von Hornbostal, someone I could not find any information on named Karl Schindler and Egon Wellesz. They were attending the 1932 Congrès du… Continue reading

The red-baiting of Hanns Eisler

Is it unreasonable to reflect on America’s ‘show-trials’ of the late 1940s when we see similar developments today? The House of Un-American Activities (HUAC) was not the same thing as the McCarthy hearings… Continue reading

A design from Hans Mersmann’s ‘Modern Music’

While moving material from one bookshelf to another in the study of my flat in Vienna, I stumbled on a copy of Hans Mersmann’s ‘Modern Music’ from 1928. Mersmann was one of the… Continue reading

Egon Wellesz and the Mengelbergs – a rescinded dedication

Bruno Walter would conduct Egon Wellesz’s cycle of symphonic poems based on Shakespeare’s ‘Tempest’ in Amsterdam on the very day that Hitler marched into Vienna. A return was unthinkable for Egon Wellesz or… Continue reading

Egon Wellesz on the Amsterdam Concertgebouw’s 1920 Mahler Festival

In May 1920, the first ever Mahler festival was held in Amsterdam under the conductor Willem Mengelberg. The Viennese composer Egon Wellesz wrote a detailed report on the events in two separate articles… Continue reading

From Tablet Magazine: “Why the New ‘Holocaust Music’ Is an Insult to Music—and to Victims of the Shoah”

for those wishing to read the article by James Loeffler…

The modern music festivals of the ’20s and ’30s

 The new-music festivals of the 1920s and early ‘30s must have been something totally different from what we know today. They probably settled somewhere between Glastonbury and Darmstadt. Post-1919 developments simply piled up… Continue reading

“Komm herab, oh Madonna Theresa”

Adding to the ‘Heliane’ vs. ‘Jonny’ conflict is an ad with someone singing a popular song of the day ‘Komm herab, oh Madonna Theresa’ (‘Come down, oh Madonna Theresa’ sung by Joseph Schmidt:… Continue reading