[ Post a Response | The MusicWeb Message Board ]
CELEBRATING 43,000 Classical CD reviews on-line (Sept 2016); 21,000 page views each day.
Return to MusicWeb International
Posted by Martin Walker on January 7, 2015, 10:04 am
This is a very interesting, informative review which I have no reason to criticise in its substance. I hope it will be considered simply as a minor but pointed correction, not a nit-pick, when I say that the phrase attributed to Hanslick (on the occasion of the work's premiere) has been quoted from an inadequate English translation. Michael Cookson says "this multi-faceted masterwork was once berated by the critic Eduard Hanslick for its “nightmarish hangover style”." The great critic's actual words were: "Es ist nicht unmöglich, dass diesem traumverwirrten Katzenjammer die Zukunft gehört - eine Zukunft, die wir nicht darum beneiden." I would propose this translation: 'It is not impossible that the future belongs to the dreamy confusion of this cacophony - the prospect of which we cannot envy the future for.' Note that he does not say "Albtraum" (nightmare) and that the German "Traumeswirren" (as attested by Schumann's Op.12) is generally translated as "dreams' confusion" or something similar. "Katzenjammer" sometimes means a hangover, but not always, as a quick look at Merriam-Webster online will show. It was the awful noise and in his view demented structure of the work he couldn't take. Certainly in my youth (50s/60s) some such objection to his work was common - if his name was mentioned at all in polite conversation. I believe that even today there are music lovers with the same attitude - which I hasten to assure that I do not share.
Thank you for taking part in the MusicWeb International Forum.
Len Mullenger - Founder of MusicWeb