Re: [charlesives] Boulez conducts Ives?
On 24 May 2008 at 10:32, Frank Camiola wrote:
I have sort of answered a lot of my questions upon finding this
> Boulez interview from August, 2000.
Thanks loads for this Frankie, it's great stuff ! It shows the value
of asking questions ! Boulez talks in extremes, like a poet, so
whnat he says is supoosed to provoke. That's perhaps why he was
hated so passionately in his youth, exceept by people who really knew
him. And he responded by being even more polemical ! He was an
enfant terrible, the scourge of the establishment etc etc. Remember
how he was in trouble after 9;/11 when someone reported his comment
made years before about "burning down opera houses".?
Recently I've been thinking a lot about the music scene in 1940's and
50's Paris. Gosh it was insular ! Nadia Boulanger ruled with a fist
of iron veiled in old lady satin. She worshipped early Stravinsky and
her musical vision ended round 1930 (grin). What did she think, then
of the circle around Messiaen ? She dropped Yvonne Loriod as soon as
Loriod took up with Messiaen. The absence of any direct comment on
Messiaen speaks volumes, even though there is no way she would not
have known his music. And who was Messiaen's surrogate son ? Pierre
Boulez, who stood for everything Boulanger hated. Boulez used to go
round routinely knocking the establishment etc etc (even though he
worshipped Stravinsky). Horror of horrors, he was even rude to his
supporters ! He upset even the saintly Messiaen though they soon
made up. It seems a bit like oedipal complex in action when you rebel
to become yourself. But to a lot of people, being a rebel is like
being in league with the devil. It would have driven Boulanger nuts
since she believed in keeping up appearances, being nice to the rich,
knowing one's "place", obeying order. Boulez must have made her gag.
Since Boulanger was extraordinarily influential among English
speaking students, musicians and writers, her views would have had
enduring impact. So we get Bernstein, and others, hostile to
Messiaen, Boulez and what they stood for. So when Boulez comes to
the US with his radical views, there's a whole lot of folks pre
conditioned not to like him.