Autograph letter signed to the Polish-born French soprano Marya Freund (1876-1966). Anton WEBERN.
Autograph letter signed to the Polish-born French soprano Marya Freund (1876-1966).

Autograph letter signed to the Polish-born French soprano Marya Freund (1876-1966).

2 pp. Octavo. Dated Mödling, February 6, 1928.

Written in response to Freund's letter to Webern earlier that year suggesting a performance in Vienna of Schoenberg's Pierrot Lunaire.

"All the halls that would come under consideration are firmly booked ... We cannot even find a space to give a concert. Yes, dearest Madam, doing "Pierrot" with you would be lovely!"

Webern notes that such a concert could only eventuate if he had the cooperation of the organizations with which he is currently engaged as conductor; he specifically mentions the Workers' Symphony concerts run by Dr. [David Josef] Bach and the concerts of the International Society of New Music. Webern goes on to say that there would be no possiblity of a performance in Vienna in the current year: "... there is nothing I can achieve by myself here in Vienna. Not a thing."

In conclusion, Webern looks forward to Freund's performance in Vienna on February 24th and mentions a review of the Schoenberg concerts in Paris in the magazine "Anbruch," where full credit was given for her part in arranging these.

Slightly worn; creased at central fold.

"Webern, who was probably Schoenberg's first private pupil, and Alban Berg, who came to him a few weeks later, were the most famous of Schoenberg's students and became, with him, the major exponents of the 12-note technique in the second quarter of the 20th century. Webern applied the new technique more rigorously than either Schoenberg, who took many liberties, or Berg, who never used it exclusively. Webern's strictness, and his innovative organization of rhythm and dynamics, were seized upon eagerly by Boulez and Stockhausen and other integral serialists of the Darmstadt School in the 1950s and were a significant influence on music in the second half of the century." Kathryn Bailey Puffett in Grove Music Online

"Freund became one of the first singers to perform 12-tone music and was the speaker for the first English and French performances of Arnold Schoenberg's atonal melodrama, Pierrot Lunaire Op. 21, which featured twenty-one set poems (in Sprechstimme) originally written in French by Albert Giraud. The first premiere was in Berlin, October 16, 1912 without Freund, and the first full performance in French took place on January 12, 1922, with Marya Freund performing and Darius Milhaud conducting."

"Freund found that Albert Giraud's original French text was not a poetic text suitable for singing. Instead, she re-translated and used her new translation for several performances in France and Belgium." Archives & Manuscripts, New York Public Library

Interestingly, in an earlier letter written in the same year as the present letter, Freund wrote to Webern offering him a position as conductor of a private chamber opera company in Paris. Webern did not accept the invitation, writing to Schoenberg on July 13: "As to chamber opera and theatre generally - I am glad that I now have time to compose again. It would be the same all over again. No, I believe that I must calmly hold out here for the time being and that I should leave only if something quite extraordinary presents itself. Only then could I feel justified in abandoning what has been begun here with Dr Bach." Moldenhauer: Anton von Webern A Chronicle of His Life and Work, p. 301.

Item #32251

Price: $2,200.00  other currencies

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