Polish Music Journal
by Zygmunt Stojowskiedited by Maja Trochimczyk and Joseph A. Herter 
The Evolution of Style and Interpretation
In Piano Literature
by Zygmunt Stojowskiedited by Maja Trochimczyk and Joseph A. Herter 
Zygmunt or, as he was more commonly known in the West, Sigismond Stojowski (b. 14 May 1870 in Strzelce; d. 6 November 1946 in New York) was a composer, pianist, and piano teacher, one of the few students of Paderewski. "Sigismond" was the non-Polish form of his given name which was used most frequently outside of Poland. The publications of his works, in France, the USA and the UK usually appeared with the first name "Sigismond" (in Germany the form of "Sigismund" was used). Even Stojowski's obituary in the Polish Review referred to him as Sigismond. The article reprinted here was originally published in Keyboard. The Professional Magazine for Teachers of Piano. Mid-season issue, vol. 2 no. 4 (November 1940): 2-3, 43-44, 47.
"The Evolution of Style and Interpretation in Piano Literature" was the title of an eight-week summer course which Zygmunt (Sigismond) Stojowski gave at the Juilliard School of Music in 1940. It is listed in the Juilliard Summer School Catalogue of that year. The development of this course began much earlier, though. In 1932, Stojowski gave a summer school course at Juilliard entitled "The Entire Range of the Piano Repertoire." The course was criticized even before it began. In an article entitled "Musical Censorship" that can be found the March 27, 1932 issue of the Brooklyn Eagle, the journalist Edward Cushing accused Stojowski of musical censorship for not including contemporary music. The impressionists were about as "modern" Stojowski ever got with his repertoire. The prospectus for that 1932 Juilliard Summer School Catalogue advertised that the course would include repertoire "...down to the Moderns (exclusive of works of an experimental nature or devoid of serious artistic purpose)."
Figure 1: Portrait of Stojowski in the Keyboard magazine.
But even more than two decades before that 1932 course, Stojowski also gave a series of five full lecture/concerts within a period of two months entitled "Historical Piano Recitals." These were given at the Institute of Musical Arts' Mendelssohn Hall. The series had a prestigious list of sponsors that included—to only mention a few—the following: industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, publisher Rudolph E. Schirmer, bridge architect Ralph Modjeski, soprano Marcella Sembrich and composer Edward MacDowell. Considering Stojowski's full teaching schedule and his commitments to other concert engagements (e.g., less than two weeks after the last recital he would perform his "First Piano Concerto" with Josef Stransky conducting the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra), it is amazing that Stojowski could have so much repertoire at the tip of his fingers. The concerts consisted of music by the following composers:
- First concert - Handel, Paradisi, François Couperin, Daquin and Johann Sebastian Bach;
- Second concert - Haydn, W.A. Mozart and Beethoven;
- Third concert - Weber, Schubert, Mendelssohn and Field;
- Fourth concert - Schumann and Chopin;
- Fifth concert - Brahms, Franck, Saint-Saëns, Grieg, Debussy, MacDowell, Moszkowski, Paderewski, Rubinstein, and Liszt.
Knowing that the 1940 course was based on the interpretation of piano literature, it might be interesting to read what a reviewer of that first "Historical Piano Recital" wrote about Stojowski as an interpreter in the February 8, 1911 issue of the Musical Courier (p. 47): "Mr. Stojowski is a master of interpretation, and on this occasion he left no one in doubt on any point. His tone is beautifully graded and the sense of hearing repeatedly entrances by the correct rhythm and clean pedal work. Every student of piano literature received some valuable impression to carry home with him or her. The simple, beautiful unaffected manner of the artist was additional cause for thankfulness. Mr. Stojowski's art is that of the master who arises to heights through the practice of lofty concentration. There can be no true progress for pianists who seek to attain perfection through grosser channels. The petty groundlings of the profession need the uplifting influence of a master like Sigismond Stojowski."
Stojowski's reflections about the subject of "interpretation" date back at least to that period. In 1913 another article on interpretation, entitled "What Interpretation Really Is," appeared in Great Pianists on Piano Playing edited by James Francis Cooke (pp. 278-287). This collection, originally published by the Theodore Presser Co. in Philadelphia in 1913, was reprinted in a facsimile edition by the AMS Press in New York in 1976.
Figure 2: The cover of the Keyboard magazine.
The Evolution of Style and Interpretation
In Piano Literature
It is said that when Peter meets Paul, there are at least six people present: the man Peter thinks Paul is, the man Paul thinks Peter is, the man each of the two considers himself to be, and the real Peter and the real Paul. It is also said that two is company buy three makes a crowd. Now the musical experience requires three persons: composer, performer, listener. Since no Hitler can arrest the multiplication table, the meeting of the initial three is converted by their multiples into a real crowd. Hence, ample opportunity for maladjustments and misunderstandings, trouble and offense. Paderewski, artist-statesman, well knows and says that "in any human crowd poisonous fumes arise." The warfare of ideas is on. The airplanes of our fancies and prejudices soar far and high—often wide off the mark. Promptly a rescuing squad arrives to make the confusion more confused: printers with their misprints, editors with their markings, critics with their verdicts, teachers with their methods. The ground is full of wreckage; is there any Ariadne's thread to guide us out of this labyrinth?
A crowd, they say, is essentially feminine. Not merely because in concert halls it is largely composed of the tired business men's wives and our charming co-eds. But it is, supposedly, impressionable, changeable, submissive. It must be wooed or coerced. The French playwright, Pailleron, put it: "Better use gentleness—and violence." Nietzsche, the German philosopher of "super-manhood" brutally advises, "If you go to a woman, don't forget your whip."
There is a charming story by Henryk Sienkiewicz, the author of Quo Vadis?, woven round Greek mythology. Those all too-human pagan gods quarrel atop Olympus. Apollo boasts of his lyre, irresistible to womankind. Ares challenges him, "There lives in Beotia a beautiful woman, a baker's wife, whom even the god of music cannot charm." Down to earth flies Apollo. Enraptured by a glance at the fair mortal, he surpasses himself in the most wondrous of serenades. Annoyed, the belle pours upon the divine head some gluey brew. . . Infuriated, suspecting some fraud of his Olympian colleague, Apollo denounces him to the father of the gods. And Zeus renders the verdict: "A virtuous woman may resist Apollo, especially if she loves another; but surely and always a stupid woman will resist him."
Sensibility, perception, attention—here is another trinity that underlies the harmonious cooperation needed between the members of our initial trinity for a happy artistic result to be achieved. Musicians long sought in a supposed "chord of nature" a basis for the tonal organization of their art. Now, scientists tell us, we must seek within ourselves. It is a matter of partly subconscious choices, conditioned by our own psychology. Thought guides the composer's hands on music-paper, presides at the keyboard over performance, and even listening is a selective mental process.
The composer being the first one on the premises, it would seem that to him belongs the final word too. In a recent book of which Carl Maria von Weber is the hero, we find the following confession in a letter: "When I look about me to see for whom I have created and fought, struggled and corrected, I always find myself reduced to myself as performer and public in a single person." Alone we come into this world and alone we go, but, in "the brief span between two eternities"—our life—art peoples this solitude with beauteous visions projected, according to the materials chosen, upon a canvas or a block of marble, into words or sounds. Prompted by some initial emotional shock to the artist's sensitive nature completed by the craftsman's constructive skill and loving zeal, brain-spun structures that come into being and stand against time for the spirit to dwell in and live on.
Notation, a French monk's wonderful invention, provided the composer with the means of perpetuating his thought, couched in the universal but evanescent language of music. The score is his shelter and armor against the ravages and attacks of time, the injury or treason to his ideas by man. Is the shelter bomb-proof, and armor invulnerable? Notation is full of ambiguities, loopholes, even perversities. Its conventions change with time. They are perfected or discarded. Signs, such as those referring to the ornaments devised to prolong the short tinkle of the harpsichord, have become puzzling and cumbersome to the performer on the richer toned piano. Mr. Danreuther devoted a learned volume to their study to arrive at the conclusion that only case-law could be applied to them. The bar-line was unknown once upon a time and some moderns have tried to dispense with it again. Many composers suspended it in declamatory recitative and free cadenza. Ever since Frescobaldi's Toccatas, in Bach's Fantasies and Preludes, the spirit of revolt against the tyranny of the bar-line manifested itself. From Mozart's fermatas and decorative patterns surrounding them, through Beethoven's imperious but planned liberties and oddities, this yearning for freedom runs to Liszt's "gypsy mannerisms," and to Chopin's wonderful ornamentation and characteristically Polish rubato. For Chopin the bar-line was, Paderewski says, "like the oppressive yoke of a foreign government." Its misdeeds have been denounced by some musicologists, while others, like Riemann, have tried to displace it, for better or worse, with a view at "phraseism." Accents often contradict and phrases overlap the bar-line. Precious in march and dance, it provides a norm against which departures are measured and sorely needed. For this norm is but one—often misguiding—element of the rhythmic structure, basis of music's formal organization. If it be rigidly enforced, it becomes a burden and a nuisance.
There are signs such as the arch in Figure 3 (see Figure 3 below) referring to different things which do not necessarily coincide, for instance the mode of performance called "legato" and the splitting up of melody into segments called phrases or periods. Nor do the dots over notes imply the kind of staccato to be used. The engravers however, can be credited with one symbol which performers would be well-advised to follow carefully (see Figure 4 below). It is calculated mathematically from a mere point to its greatest width, indicating the gradual swelling or dwindling of tone to perfection. Even so, we are not informed of the intensity wanted in either accretion or de-gradation of tone. Nor are we sure that the signs are placed in the right spot.
Figure 3: Articulation sign of "legato" and "phrasing."
Figure 4: Dynamic signs of crescendo-decrescendo.
Composers are often lax and casual, even incorrect, in their markings and notation. There is a considerable difference in this respect between the ancients and the moderns. The moderns take pains to prescribe exactly what they want down to the minutest detail. Hence, a Ravel can say: "I want no interpretation, it is enough to play what is written." As notes do clash, it is sometimes difficult to know whether the full text is correct. But the ancients were casual even about the text. Manuscripts from the same hand differ, as the learned Bach Society of Leipzig occasionally discovered to its discomfiture. The ancients used shorthand notation and ciphered bass. They trusted one another. All were virtuosi as well as composers. So were Mozart and Beethoven, credited as the first ones to bring painstaking care into shaping their thoughts into perfect patterns as well as providing exact marks for phrasing and shading.
In truth, a line of cleavage between virtuoso and musician among composers runs back to Bull and Byrd. It persists down to Liszt and Chopin. Neither excludes the other until modern specialization makes them part company. As Mr. Chavez, the Mexican composer-conductor wittily puts it, the modern virtuoso is "a man who, owning a silk hat wants to wear it all the time." The mechanization of life has invaded [him], the microbe of speed infected him. He forgets that he cannot compete with the machine, that his function caters to human values. These are neither the vanity to shine and dazzle nor the pride to rule and over-rule the composer. To the latter, the performer owes a loyalty, to the listener, clarity and conviction. Between the three there exists what some new Rousseau might call a "social contract" in which no party can be passively indolent nor recklessly domineering.
The performer still can be the composer's collaborator to some extent. For the masterpieces are few in which nothing can be modified or added. If the "waking dream" which composers carry upon paper were fully realized, only one interpretation would be possible and the machine's exact precision would suffice. With extreme tact and reserve, the composer's text must be scrutinized with regard to inner meaning, expressive purpose, [and] instrumental setting. It is slippery ground, of course, into which the student cannot venture alone and many an artist falls and fails.
I recall how Anton Rubinstein raved and raged, arguing that two hundred years hence nobody would know the authentic text and intent of any of the masters. This same Rubinstein spent many hours in his late pruning his own works, expurgating from them some fine, bold strokes of his youth. When Liszt revised Weber's Sonatas, so full of empty paddings and impractically wide chordal settings, he rendered him a genuine service. Sacred as Beethoven's text is, no performer capable of handing it at all need hesitate to restore, in the resumption of the great main theme of the first movement of the Sonata Op. 111, after the development section, the ff unison octaves in both hands suddenly discontinued as a misguided facility, in the concluding groups of sixteenths. What matters is the maintenance of the fierce impetus; the impoverishment in sound resulting from the facility, the great deaf man failed to realize. Schumann often offers alternative versions, afterthoughts which the good sense of Raro, the wise member of the fraternity conceived by him as consisting of the multiples of his own personality—the "Davidsbund"—would condemn. However introducing Lisztian so-called "blind octaves" into the entirely different, personal, and perfect pianism of Chopin, as some do, is not only debatable but deplorable. When a Paderewski takes in hand a Liszt Rhapsody, it turns out ennobled and glorified by his masterful retouches in the creator's own vein. "Only the spirit can comprehend the spirit," says the Frenchman Chamfort, and here again case-law reigns supreme.
Each composer is born into a given time and place, into a period of history with its social, economic and political conditions that affect him and his output; with a set of tools evolved and sanctioned by tradition to which his own needs may add new ones. Human personality is bound to reflect the "genius loci," a native soil and given environment. There is, accordingly, a particular mental attitude to grasp, a milieu to know, a technique to master. The historical sense steps in, and the presence of a fourth element in the cooperative effort of our three parties, make itself felt: our instrument viewed in evolutionary perspective.
No less than Lindbergh when he spoke of the Spirit of St. Louis, pianists are entitled to say "we" in reference to the piano. A century ago, the greatest pianist of the time thus expressed himself about his chosen instrument: "The piano is to me what the ship is to the sailor, a horse to the Arab. Even more, it is my language, my life, my self. My passion makes its strings vibrate and its keyboard intimately partakes of my various moods. To me, the importance of the piano is tremendous: it holds me chained with bonds I never will be able to break." And Liszt goes on to say, "The piano has, more than any other instrument, the possibility of partaking in man's life, yet it lives a life of its own, it has a personal development."
No wonder the piano played so prominent a part in the history of music and it possessed of a literature that reflects music's every aspect, since it is so uniquely resourceful and can be so loved. Even its low-voiced but gently expressive ancestor, the clavichord, vibrated and sang under the fleet fingers of old Bach, in the intimacy of his home, with the same religious fervor that inspired him at the mighty organ in church. Its near relative, the harpsichord, was better fitted for team-work, dance-music, and the style galant. Its brilliancy well suited Scarlatti, the Italian master from sunny Naples, in his exuberance and joy in life. It also could perfectly reflect the courtly graces and refinement of Couperin, the exquisite miniaturist of Louis XIV. But all this early keyboard literature is our inheritance from organ and harpsichord, which, on our piano, faces inevitable transcription. This will be good or bad according to the extent to which it reconciles the fundamental spirit of the old music, with an idiomatic use of the new medium. Mozart, the king of rococo, whose art so faithfully mirrors his day, scarcely differentiates the treatment of the early piano from that of the harpsichord. Yet, the easy, fluent, thin-toned Viennese pianos seem perfectly fitted to his own fluent technique, his delicate tracery, his airy art. And he already delighted in the new device of the knee-pedal.
Beethoven's demands prompted further improvements in tone-quality and volume. The piano then received the intimate confessions of the mighty one in those sonatas that have been aptly called "programmatic music of the soul." Even so, we can scarcely conceive off the Titan's explosions and deep musings except in conjunction with the eloquence of our modern piano. Nor can we imagine Beethoven's art, in its rhythmic vitality and pathos, without what the piano brought with it as a novelty, namely, accent, meaning isolated dynamic stresses, climactic gradations, [and] dramatic contrasts.
Dignity and power the piano shares with the organ, precision and clarity with the harpsichord. But it is alone among keyboard instruments in producing those subtle inflections by which small rhythmic groupings, even the motive of two notes—"germ-cells" the composer D'Indy calls them—become recognizably expressive. We may compare the beginning of the first movement of Beethoven's Sonata, Op. 31 no. 2, wherein any musicians will, even unconsciously, stress the first note in the groups of two eights (bars two to five inclusive) with Schumann's Lettres Dansantes in the Carnival Op. 9, in which the accent falls not on the initial grace note, but on the staccato note following. Through stress, duration, and pause, the pianist produces tonal groupings which result in rhythmic integration. Music's incessant flow needs points of rest to the mind, cues of attention for the listener, lest the latter only hear some vague murmur, a monotonous trickle or noisy roar. This, of course, corresponds to the violinist's bowing, the singer's breathing, and turns, in competent hands, into the highly expressive art of phrasing.
The pianist, however, does more than mould the melodic line into "musical shapes," than carve out "themes" or "phrases" into what psychologists call "units of response." He governs the whole stream of sound, parallel to our "stream of consciousness," in its width and depth as well. For music, a temporal art, borrows from the sister arts that evolve in space, not merely some terms, but real attributes and dimensions. As successive tonal-rhythmic patterns coalesce into a texture woven of many strands simultaneously moving, the artist at the keyboard projects light and shade, distributes tone volumes, singles out details along a vertical as well as a horizontal plane, to illuminate the mood aspects, to enhance the sheer sense-appeal and emotional impact of the sound-waves. Owing to a resource unique of its kind, the pedal, our instrument can bind and blend its tones into a "cantabile" all its own and devise a color scheme ranging from delicate "mezzo-tint" to gaudy splendor. It is idle and wicked to pretend that a modern Steinway cannot be made to sing, because a "percussion instrument" should only be hit—and hurt. . .  remains a keyed and stringed instrument, apt to convey messages "from heart to heart," as Beethoven expressed it. To his master's voice "the pedal lends a halo, a glowing radiance through dynamic intensification of sound, and a kind of magic and mystery, when a gradual fading of tone is allowed or combined with the soft pedal's "una corda."
Mystery and glamor attracted the romantic soul. Therefore, the piano became the favorite instrument, the confidante of masters throughout the 19th century. It served Schubert's lyric tunefulness, dramatically tinged. It encouraged Schumann's experiments with rhythmic cross-currents and persistent patterns, while reflecting his dual personality, the tender musings of dreamy Eusebius and the passionate outbursts of wily Florestan. And Chopin came, of whom Rubinstein could say, "It is impossible to know whether the instrument's soul was embodied in him, or whether he breathed into the instrument his own soul." There were Liszt, lordly and histrionic, mightily builder, versatile impressionist and transcriber, and Brahms, rustic and refined, with a bag of intimate or rugged sonorities, involved rhythms, austere technicalities in variation form, and a logic, astute and compelling. "Away with harmony and form," rang the revolutionary outcry from Paris: yet, Debussy with his elusive and subtle art, skeptical and scornful of tradition, sat admiringly at the feet of Chopin, carefully preserving form and refining upon harmony while intently listening to the instrument. This may prove his saving-grace in a world of irreverence and irrelevance.
Such, in briefest summary, is our unparalleled wealth—to be studied, analyzed, and assimilated. We pianists have to handle crowds of notes and crowds of people. There is "a way notes do go" in various directions and at different rates of speed, for us to assess and apprehend. And a way in which crowds do run or walk either towards the stage for more from us [i.e. to hear the performers], or to the exits, for less. . . Music can be a web of enchantment or a weariness to the flesh. To engender perfect understanding and sympathy with the cooperative scheme of a composer, performer, listener, whose respective rights and duties we are discussing, a common denominator must be found. This only can be that unity of impression and expression towards which all are groping. It is achieved by the artist when self-control becomes self-expression. The most immaterial of all the arts, music appeals to the noblest essence in man's make-up. It all holds in the master Paderewski's saying: "even God is not all love, He is in part respect."
The editors collaborated on the introduction and notes. In the original publication, the article's title did not include the initial "The." It was published with the following annotation: "The summary of a course given by a great musical scholar at the summer session at the Juilliard Institute of Musical Art." [Back]
Polish pianist, composer and politician (first prime minister of independent Poland after World War I and Poland's representative to the League of Nations) Ignacy Jan Paderewski (1860-1941) was Stojowski's teacher and mentor. The editors have not been able to locate the source of this quote. [Back]
Stojowski's application of the idea of the "feminine" to crowd psychology is an interesting variant of stereotyping the "feminine"—widespread in music literature through the 19th and early 20th centuries. This topic has been discussed by many feminist writers, for instance in: Jane Bowers and Judith Tick, eds., Women Making Music: The Western Art Tradition, 1150-1950 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press), 1986; Marcia J. Citron, Gender and the Musical Canon (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), 1993; Susan C. Cook and Judy S. Tsou, Cecilia Reclaimed: Feminist Perspectives on Gender and Music (Chicago: University of Illinois Press), 1994; and Susan McClary, Feminine Endings: Music, Gender, and Sexuality (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press), 1991. A range of late 19th-century and early 20th century writings on the feminine in music is reprinted in Carol Neuls-Bates, ed., Women in Music: An Anthology of Source Readings from the Middle Ages to the Present (Boston: Northeastern University Press), 1996; revised edition; 1st ed. 1982. [Back]
This maxim comes from the writings of Edouard Pailleron (1834-1899), French writer and the author of numerous popular comedies, e.g. Le monde ou l'on s'amuse (comédie en un acte en prose), Cabotins! (comédie en 4 actes), Les faux ménages (Comédie en quatre actes en vers). [Back]
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900), published this misogynistic statement in Thus spake Zarathustra: a book for all and none. See, Basic writings of Nietzsche, Walter Kaufmann, ed. (New York : Modern Library), 2000. Also see Kathleen Higgins, "The Whip Recalled," in Nietzsche and Women, special issue of the Journal of Nietzsche Studies no. 12 (Autumn 1996). [Back]
Henryk Sienkiewicz (1846-1916) wrote his historical novel Quo Vadis? in 1896 and the work received the Nobel Prize for literature in 1905. See, W. S. Kuniczak, trans. Quo Vadis? (New York : Hippocrene Books), 2000. Stojowski may have been familiar with the original Polish text, as well as with the popular translation by Jeremiah Curtin,
(New York: Hurst, 1897; reprinted by Grosset & Dunlap, 1925; and Bantam Books, 1925). [Back]
The proponents of the "chord of nature" theory included Jean-Jacques Rameau and, more recently, German music theorist Heinrich Schenker (1867-1935), best known for Der freie Satz. A Complete translation by Theodore Krueger appeared in 1960. See Matthew Gordon Brown, A Rational Reconstruction of Schenkerian Theory (Ph. Diss., Cornell University, 1989). Free composition...a translation by T. Howard Krueger (Ph.Diss. University of Iowa, 1960); Free Composition (New York: Longman, 1979). [Back]
Lucy Poate Stebbins, and Richard Poate Stebbins, Enchanted Wanderer: The Life of Carl Maria von Weber, (New York, G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1940). Carl Maria von Weber's dates are: 1786-1826. [Back]
Modern notation is usually credited to Philippe de Vitry (14th century). Earlier developments took place in many European countries. [Back]
Danreuther's treatise on ornaments and harpsichord could not be located. [Back]
Paderewski's thoughts about tempo rubato appear in a chapter on tempo rubato for Henry Finck's Success in Music and How It Is Won (New York: C. Scribner's Sons, 1909). Microfilm at the University of Rochester Libraries (Rochester, NY ). He also wrote "Tempo rubato: The Best Way to Study the Piano," in The Paderewski Paradox/Le paradoxe Paderewski (Lincoln: Klavar Music Foundation, 1992). Originally published in Słowo Polskie, vol. 15 no. 491 (1910). [Back]
See Bradley Hunnicutt, ed. and trans., Hugo Riemann's System der Musikalischen Rhythmik und Metrik: A Translation Preceded by Commentary (Ph. D. Diss. University of Wisconsin - Madison, 2000). Riemann (1849-1919) is better known for his theory of harmony. [Back]
English renaissance composers, John Bull (1562 or 63-1628) and William Byrd (1543-1623). [Back]
Carlos Chavez (1899-1978), a Mexican composer. His music was featured during a 1940 concert series in New York at the Museum of Modern Art. It is possible that the statement originates from this project. See Herbert Weinstock, Mexican Music (New York, Printed for the Trustees of the Museum of Modern Art by W.E. Rudge's Sons, 1940). For more information about Chavez consult Robert Parker's Charlos Chavez: A Guide to Research (New York: Garland, 1998). [Back]
Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-78). The English edition of Rousseau's The Social Contract was first published in 1791; as An inquiry into the nature of the social contract, or, Principles of political right (London: printed for G.G.J. and J. Robinson), 1791/ For a modern edition see Discourse on Political Economy and The Social Contract (Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 1999). [Back]
Anton Rubinstein (1829-1894). His comments about the masters may have appeared in Autobiography of Anton Rubinstein, 1829-1889 (Boston: Little, Brown, and Company, 1890) or in Guide to the Proper Use of the Pianoforte Pedals: With Examples out of the Historical Concerts of Anton Rubinstein (Leipzig: Bosworth; New York: T. B. Harms & F. Day & Hunter), 1897. Stojowski's "Piano Concerto No. 1" is dedicated to Rubinstein (its dedication reads: Hommage ŕ Antoine Rubinstein). [Back]
Franz Liszt (1811-1886) also wrote virtuosic transcriptions of several works by Carl Maria von Weber: overtures to Oberon and Freischütz, Polonaise brillante and a number of arias and songs. [Back]
Beethoven (1770-1827). The first movement of the Piano sonata in C minor, op. 111, Maestoso has appeared in facsimile editions prepared and discussed by musicologists. Two editions: Facsimile-Wiedergabe der Klaviersonate in c-moll, opus 111, (Leipzig: C.G. Röder, 1952); Ludwig van Beethoven, Piano sonata no. 32 in C minor, opus 111. Fascimile series of music manuscripts edited and with foreword by Eric Simon (New York: Dover, 1968). Selected studies: William Drabkin, "Some Relationships Between the Autographs of Beethoven's Sonata in C minor, opus 111," Current Musicology Vol. 13 (1972): 38-47; Joanna Goldstein, A Beethoven Enigma: Performance Practice and the Piano Sonata, Opus 111 (American University Studies No.10: 2; New York: Lang, 1991). [Back]
Liszt's technique of "blind octaves" involves playing the octaves with alternating two hands in such a way that the notes played by the thumbs combine to produce a scale, trill, arpeggio, etc. [Back]
Paderewski's recording of Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsody No. 10 appears on a 1912 release, reissued in 1992 by RCA Victor Gold Seal label (09026-60923-2). The collection also includes La Campanella by Liszt and works by Beethoven, Chopin, Wagner, Strauss and Paderewski (Minuet in G). [Back]
Sébastien-Roch-Nicolas Chamfort (1740?-1794) was well known for his maxims and sayings. Some early-twentieth century editions of his writings include
, trans. William G. Hutchison (London: E. Mathews, 1902); Maxims and Considerations, trans. Edward Powys Mathers (Golden Cockerell Press, 1926). [Back]
The role of geographic location for artistic creativity, genius loci resembles the ideas from the philosophy of art of Hyppolyte Taine (1828-93), e.g. The Philosophy of Art, trans. John Durand (New York: Baillicre, 1865; 2nd ed. New York, Holt & Williams, 1873). [Back]
Charles Lindbergh, a pioneer of aviation, was born in Detroit in 1902 (died in 1974); the Spirit of St. Louis was the name of his plane. [Back]
The source of this quote from Liszt has not been established. [Back]
See Sandra P. Rosenblum, "Pedaling the Piano: A Brief Survey from the Eighteenth Century to the Present," Performance Practice Review vol. 6 no. 2 (fall 1993): 158-178; Kenneth Mobbs, "Stops and Other Special Effects on the Early Piano." Early Music vol. 12 no. 4 (November 1984): 471-76. [Back]
Vincent d'Indy (1851-1931). See Andrew Thomson, Vincent d'Indy and his world (New York, Oxford: Clarendon Press), 1996. [Back]
Here Stojowski opposes contemporary composers' theories about the piano as a percussion instrument, e.g. Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971) - Poetics of Music: In the Form of Six Lessons, trans. Arthur Knodel and Ingolf Dahl (London: Oxford University Press), 1942; Béla Bartók (1881-1945), a statement "About the 'Piano' Problem," (1927) and an essay about "Mechanical Music" (1937), reprinted in Benjamin Suchoff, ed. Bartók's Essays (London: University of Nebraska Press, 1976). [Back]
Arthur Rubinstein repeatedly discusses Chopin in his memoirs, My Young Years (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1973); and My Many Years (New York, Alfred A. Knopf, 1980). [Back]
This is just one expression of Stojowski's dislike of Claude Debussy (1862-1918) and Maurice Ravel (1875-1937), the creators of the so-called "musical impressionism." Debussy and Ravel marked the "modernist" limits of Stojowski's musical taste. For a discussion of Debussy's relationship to Chopin see Jean-Jacques Eigeldinger, "Placing Chopin: Reflections on a compositional aesthetic," in Jim Samson, ed. Chopin Studies, vol. 2 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994): 102-139; Roy Howat, "Chopin's Influence on the Fin-de-siecle and Beyond," in, Jim Samson, ed., The Cambridge Companion to Chopin (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992): 246-283. [Back]
See Paderewski's statements appearing in The Paderewski Memories, Mary Lawton, ed. (New York, Charles Scribner's Sons, 1938). [Back]
Burgoyne: Stokowski and Stojowski
Stojowski: Music and Life: An Address
Editors' Biographies: Herter, Trochimczyk
PMJ - Current Issue
Copyright 2001 by the Polish Music Journal.
Editor: Maja Trochimczyk. Assistant Editor: Linda Schubert.
Publisher: Polish Music Center, 2001.
Design: Maja Trochimczyk & Marcin Depinski.
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