Klarinet Archive - Posting 000521.txt from 1996/01
From: "Dan Leeson: LEESON@-----.EDU>
Subj: The Sinfonie Concertante and Ivan Schwabbauer's comments
Date: Wed, 24 Jan 1996 20:35:25 -0500
I don't take umbrage at Ivan comments. On the contrary I am grateful for
all input on this question.
It is clear that Ivan is not in agreement with what I said, and he is
not the first nor will he be the last. And there is no "but" or
I placed my arguments on the table and, in Ivan's case, they fell flat.
Sorry 'bout that.
When dealing with issues of formal structure of music (which was the
basis of my comments) there isn't much room for the view "Well it might
have happened some other way." The business of finding solutions to
complex musicological problems (which this one certainly is, in spades)
is not done by tossing out a variety of "might have been solutions." Anyone
can make up a scenario to explain how something could have happened. And
that is what Ivan has done. But that is not the way the analysis is done.
The operative principle is that of "Occam's razor" which says, given a
variety of ways that something might have happened, the simplest is
invariably the correct way. Ivan wants me to accept that Mozart, for this
work and no other in his life, would abandon formal structure in order to
play around. Sorry Ivan, it doesn't hold water.
What makes sense?: The work, in part at least, cannot be by Mozart because
it stands in strict violation of all classical forms of music architecture,
something that Mozart never did in any known work during his entire lifetime;
OR, in this case and this case alone, Mozart's adventuresomeness caused
him to abandon all known structural forms committing a half dozen major
errors in compositional form.
Ivan and I are products of 20th century training and listening. The things
that are wrong with that work don't bother us because we are used to
a variety of forms and structures. Listen to Rite of Spring on one hand
and Daphnis on the other. It is hard to believe that these were written
on the same planet, much less at the same time.
So deviations from strict form don't bother us. But any audience member
in 1780 would have booed that piece off the stage as having been written
by an idiot. "A double solo exposition???? Are you kidding?" they might
I hope that you will continue to post on this subject Ivan and I admire
your thoughts on the matter. I simply think that they are easily
overturned and represent the product of a 20th century mind more than
that of an 18th century mind.
Dan Leeson, Los Altos, California