Stravinsky’s Poetics of Music: The Game Plan

These posts on Stravinsky’s Poetics of Music in the Form of Six Lessons (Amazon affiliate link) are part of a new project I’m undertaking.  I was deeply moved when I first read this book; I highly recommend it.  The content provides a very deep and rich way of thinking about a creator’s role in music and the world.

So, I thought it’d be appropriate to share some of my own thoughts and reflections on some of the many topics Stravinsky discusses.   I hope you enjoy!

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How do I approach reading and sharing this material?  Discussing aesthetics is troublesome. In discussing Stravinsky’s Poetics, Lothar Klein, wrote this:

“Composers seldom trust books on aesthetics.  Aesthetics, they rightfully sense, can claim no victories apart from the example of art itself.”

Klein mentions that this addresses the debate between “creative action and theoretical creativity.”

Don’t talk, just play!

This may be a favorable strategy for some artists.  Are you one of them?  If so, why are you reading this?

You’re still reading…I suspect that you’re like me:  We’re both searching for something that reaches beyond harmonic and rhythmic theory.  We’re searching for a theory of the arts that explains, informs, describes and inspires our music, our practice and our lives!

Let me rephrase that: I’m searching for a theory of the arts that explains, informs, describes and inspires my music, my practice and my life!  You’re still reading…you must be searching too, but you’ll probably find something different; our common element is the search, not the theory.  That will be my basic assumption throughout these posts.

I’m confident that we’ll recognize some more common elements along the way, but a common theory may be impossible.  Maybe that’s why creative action and theoretical creativity don’t usually get along; it’s assumed that the theory belongs to everyone.  I bet they’re in much closer sync where the individual is concerned.

Regardless, the following posts will address issues of aesthetics that interest me with no expectations that they will interest you.  You may not even consider them issues!

Hopefully you will though; that’s why I’m writing this!

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