Five orchestral pieces ; and, Pelleas und Melisande

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Dover, 1912 - Music - 186 pages
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Perhaps more than any other composer of his time, Arnold Schoenberg (1874–1951) influenced the course of twentieth-century music. His compositional style moved progressively from lush, late Wagnerian chromaticism to a complete break with traditional tonality, later organized theoretically as "composition with twelve tones." This systematic control of all pitches evolved into a similar serialization of all of music's elements — a revolutionary advance that dominated international composition through most of this century.
This edition of two of Schoenberg's most important orchestral works invites music lovers into the first steps of the revolution he helped bring about. The symphonic poem Pelleas und Melisande (1902), based on Maurice Maeterlinck's play, reveals Schoenberg's expanding chromatic language. The Five Orchestral Pieces (1909) demonstrates the composer's daring exploration of a music that renounces motivic connections as well as tonality. Both of these groundbreaking works are presented here in authoritative editions.

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About the author (1912)

An American of Austrian birth, Arnold Schoenberg composed initially in a highly developed romantic style but eventually turned to painting and expressionism. At first he was influenced by Richard Wagner and tried to write in a Wagnerian style. He attracted the attention of Alban Berg and Anton von Webern, with whom he created a new compositional method based on using all 12 half-steps in each octave as an organizing principle, the so-called 12-tone technique. His importance to the development of twentieth-century music is incredible, but the music he composed using this new method is not easily accessible to most concertgoers.

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