WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART: Master of Pure Music by Monroe Stearns

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART: Master of Pure Music

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Unremitting attitudinizing mars this detailed account of Mozart's life and meaningless generalizations masquerade as characterization of his work. Sometimes the attitudes are offensive, in themselves: ""Wolfgang may have picked up this vulgarity ('references to private parts') from his mother, who was of peasant"" stock."" Or, hearken--""A string quartet is a private kind of communication in which the composer counts on the sympathy and understanding of experienced connoisseurs or creators as he introduces new musical ideas and sometimes a new musical language."" This is presented as a definition of the string quartet-and it is not accompanied by any explanation of ""new musical ideas"" or ""new musical language."" The author decries looking for the man in the music, then writes--regarding a particular piano concerto--""its sober andante movement. . . suggests Mozart's sadness at not being able to follow Mlle. Jeunehomme's example and make a concert tour."" The research is all right; the rest is balderdash.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1968
Publisher: Watts