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Pierre Schaeffer

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I was horrified by modern 12-tone music. I said to myself, 'Maybe I can find something different... maybe salvation, liberation, is possible.'
--
Pierre Schaeffer: an Interview with the Pioneer of Musique Concrete (Records Quarterly magazine, vol. 2, n° 1; 1987)

 
Pierre Schaeffer

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If...[Alban] Berg departs so radically from tradition, through his substitution of a symmetrical partitioning of the octave for the asymmetrical partionings of the major/minor system, he departs just as radically from the twelve-tone tradition that is represented in the music of Schoenberg and Webern, for whom the twelve-tone series was always an integral structure that could be transposed only as a unit, and for whom twelve-tone music always implied a constant and equivalent circulation of the totality of pitch classes.

 
George Perle
 

"If...Berg departs so radically from tradition, through his substitution of a symmetrical partitioning of the octave for the asymmetrical partionings of the major/minor system, he departs just as radically from the twelve-tone tradition that is represented in the music of Schoenberg and Webern, for whom the twelve-tone series was always an integral structure that could be transposed only as a unit, and for whom twelve-tone music always implied a constant and equivalent circulation of the totality of pitch classes."

 
Alban Berg
 

It's nice to think about the Golden Age of Hollywood, with the big studios and their fabulous music departments and the hundreds of films coming out every year. But it's gone. In some ways the composer today is more fortunate, provided he can find a good film, because he can attempt more than he could two decades ago. Twelve-tone music was unheard of during Max Steiner's heyday, as were any other avant-garde techniques. Finally, the future of film music rests with the composers themselves. lf they take their work seriously and turn out the best that is within them, then perhaps we can persuade not only the public, but the filmmakers that good music is valuable in films. The public is not stupid. If our music survives, which I have no doubt it will, then it will be because it is good.

 
Jerry Goldsmith
 

It appears to me that the subject of music, from Machaut to Boulez, has always been its construction. Melodies of 12-tone rows just don't happen. They must be constructed....To demonstrate any formal idea in music, whether structure or stricture, is a matter of construction, in which the methodology is the controlling metaphor of the composition...Only by 'unfixing' the elements traditionally used to construct a piece of music could the sounds exist in themselves--not as symbols, or memories which were memories of other music to begin with.

 
Morton Feldman
 

By the time of his Fourth String Quartet, inversional symmetry had become as fundamental a premise of Bartók's harmonic language as it is of the twelve-tone music of Schoenberg, Berg, and Webern. Neither he nor they ever realized that this connection establishes a profound affinity between them in spite of the stylistic features that so obviously distinguish his music from theirs...Nowhere does he [Bartók] recognize the communality of his harmonic language with that of the twelve-tone composers that is implied in their shared premise of the harmonic equivalence of inversionally symmetrical pitch-class relations.

 
George Perle
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