Edgard Varese, the pioneering composer of electronic music, formed the subject of a major exhibition in Basel in 2006; it displayed many previously unknown documents from the composer's estate, including manuscripts, letters, and other material. This volume contains detailed commentaries on all the items on display, as well as thirty-two essays by leading authors from Europe and America. Varese's life and music are discussed under the following headings: Influences - Points of Orientation; Conductor and Initiator in New York; Probing Uncharted Territory; Impact and Reception. Many previously unknown documents from the composer's estate, recently acquired by the Paul Sacher Foundation, form the basis of a nuanced picture of Varese's life, musical thought, and compositional output. The book is lavishly illustrated with facsimiles of manuscripts, letters, and other documents from the composer's collection, as well as reproductions of paintings, drawings and sculpture documenting Varese's close ties to the visual arts. Contributors: JONATHAN W. Bernard, Gianmario Borio, Diane Bouchard, Austin Clarkson, Hermann Danuser, Michel Duchesneau, Sabine Feisst, Kyle Gann, Fritz Gerber, Theo Hirsbrunner, Anne Jostkleigrewe, Matthias Kassel, Sylvia Kahan, Klaus Kropfinger, Ernst Lichtenhahn, Malcolm Macdonald, Guido Magnaguagno, Olivia Mattis, Ulrich Mosch, Helga De La Motte-Haber, Felix Meyer, Dieter Nanz, Robert Piencikowski, Wolfgang Rathert, David Schiff, Anne C. Shreffler, Heinz Stahlhut, Jurg Stenzl, Denise Von Glahn, Chou Wen-Chung, and Heidy Zimmermann. It is published in cooperation with the Paul Sacher Foundation.
What...should be emphasized is the enormous contribution this volume makes to our understanding of a composer increasingly recognized as central to the timbral, technological, and aesthetic developments of twentieth-century music. MUSIC & LETTERSThis book will likely impel readers to immerse themselves in the forceful, pioneering music of Varese. Recommended. CHOICEThis large and handsomely-designed volume...encapsulates a mass of fresh information, letters and tributes from Varese associates all the way from Debussy...to Boulez and Frank Zappa. No-one interested in this composer, or indeed the 20th century modernist adventure as a whole, should be without it. BBC MUSIC (Bayan Northcott)Lavishly illustrated...this publication becomes, at once, the first port of call for information about the composer and his music. There are discoveries everywhere. TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT (Paul Griffiths)