19th-century Composer Quotes
The melodic curves of speech are an expression of the complete organism and of all phases of its spiritual activities. They demonstrate whether a man is stupid or intelligent, sleepy or awake, tired or alert. They tell us whether he is a child or an old man, whether it is morning or evening, light or darkness, heat or frost, and disclose whether a person is alone or in company. The art of dramatic writing is to compose a melodic curve that will, as if by magic, reveal immediately a human being in one definite phase of his existence.
My piano is to me what a ship is to the sailor, what a steed is to the Arab. It is the intimate personal depository of everything that stirred wildly in my brain during the most impassioned days of my youth. It was there that all my wishes, all my dreams, all my joys, and all my sorrows lay.
I was not influenced by composers as much as by natural objects and physical phenomena. As a child, I was tremendously impressed by the qualities and character of the granite I found in Burgundy, where I often visited my grandfather... So I was always in touch with things of stone and with this kind of pure structural architecture — without frills or unnecessary decoration. All of this became an integral part of my thinking at a very early stage.
I wish I could write to you as tenderly as I love you and tell you all the good things that I wish you. You are so infinitely dear to me, dearer than I can say... If things go on much longer as they are at present I shall have sometime to put you under glass or to have you set in gold. If only I could live in the same town with you and my parents... Do write me a nice letter soon. Your letters are like kisses.
It is improper, to expressly pursue the Urlinie in performance and to single out its tones... for the purpose of communicating the Urlinie to the listener." Rather, "for the performer, the Urlinie provides, first of all, a sense of direction. It serves a somewhat equivalent function to that which a road map serves for a mountain climber.