Lexicon of Musical Invective: Critical Assaults on Composers since Beethoven's Time

Lexicon of Musical Invective: Critical Assaults on Composers since Beethoven's Time

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by Nicolas Slonimsky
     
 

"A supermarket tabloid of classical music criticism."—From the new foreword by Peter Schickele.
A snakeful of critical venom aimed at the composers and the classics of nineteenth- and twentieth-century music. Who wrote advanced cat music? What commonplace theme is very much like Yankee Doodle? Which composer is a scoundrel and a giftless bastard? What

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Overview

"A supermarket tabloid of classical music criticism."—From the new foreword by Peter Schickele.
A snakeful of critical venom aimed at the composers and the classics of nineteenth- and twentieth-century music. Who wrote advanced cat music? What commonplace theme is very much like Yankee Doodle? Which composer is a scoundrel and a giftless bastard? What opera would His Satanic Majesty turn out? Whose name suggests fierce whiskers stained with vodka? And finally, what third movement begins with a dog howling at midnight, then imitates the regurgitations of the less-refined or lower-middle-class type of water-closet cistern, and ends with the cello reproducing the screech of an ungreased wheelbarrow? For the answers to these and other questions, readers need only consult the "Invecticon" at the back of this inspired book and then turn to the full passage, in all its vituperation. Among the eminent reviewers are George Bernard Shaw, Virgil Thomson, Hans von Bülow, Friedrich Nietzsche, Eduard Hanslick, Olin Downes, Deems Taylor, Paul Rosenfeld, and Oscar Wilde. Itself a classic, this collection of nasty barbs about composers and their works, culled mostly from contemporaneous newspapers and magazines, makes for hilarious reading and belongs on the shelf of everyone who loves—or hates —classical music. With a new foreword by Peter Schickele ("P.D.Q. Bach").

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``The music of a demented eunuch,'' writes one 19th-century critic of Wagner in this remarkable anthology of vitriolic reviews. (June)
Booknews
An anthology of critical assaults on well-known composers and their works written by the late Nicolas Slonimsky<-->writer, lexicographer, pianist, composer, conductor, teacher, and in his own words, "legendary...musicologist of manifold endeavors [and] failed wunderkind." It also includes his "Invecticon," an index to the nasty words and phrases found in the book. This is a reprint of the 1953 edition with a new foreword by Peter Schickele who describes the collection as "funny and instructive." Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393320091
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
08/28/2000
Pages:
325
Sales rank:
899,788
Product dimensions:
5.60(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.90(d)

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