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Subject: Re: "Three Doctorate Degrees"
From: albert innaurato <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:albert innaurato <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Thu, 31 Aug 2017 10:05:15 -0500
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It's only on Opera-L that one sees such astonishing philistinism and
anti-intellectualism. No wonder there are so many Trump voters.

It's only on Opera-L that people would be debating Pelleas more than a
hundred years after it was written, indeed, more than a hundred years
after it established itself as an important work and had been given in
all the great opera houses of the world (and that is still the case).

It's only on Opera-L that an ignoramus who arbitrarily has chosen some
works as "holy" but has no musical training, experience or insight
holds forth in a quasi-authoritative manner and some fools take it
seriously.

It's only on Opera-L that a frankly stupid canard about musicologists
having no talent is quoted by someone I've never heard of and who
doesn't seem to have a reputation of any kind as though that hoary
cliche means something.

It's only on Opera-L that a very old man who loves Nanki-Poo (!) and
seems to prefer short, light music to all else thinks his idiot
opinions should matter in a discussion of a range of work.

It's only on Opera-L that some sweaty philistine falls over backwards
to defend what doesn't need a defence. There is no "battle" against
Pelleas. But all great works divide opinions. They should. Art is
meant to make us uncomfortable as well as to thrill and stimulate us.

As Franz Kafka wrote (and who has read HIM?): "I think we ought to
read only the kind of books that wound and stab us. If the book we are
reading doesn't wake us up with a blow on the head, what are we
reading it for? ...we need the books that affect us like a disaster,
that grieve us deeply, like the death of someone we loved more than
ourselves, like being banished into forests far from everyone, like a
suicide. A book must be the ax for the frozen sea inside us."

There's no sin in making a lively case against a "Masterwork". And
there are always trivial minds making cases for (as we see) and
against important works. Lang knows infinitely more than the people
attacking him. But no law makes his opinion matter in the scheme of
things.

AI

On Thu, Aug 31, 2017 at 9:37 AM, David Geary <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> Someone asked a friend of mine, a conductor "What is a musicologist?"
> and he replied "A musicologist is what you become when you don't have
> any talent."
>
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