Composers of Today: A Comprehensive Biographical and Critical Guide to Modern Composers of All Nations

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youth) and Arnold Schönberg are his profoundest admirations. Divorced from his music, he has only one diversion, his Ford--and in wandering over Austrian countrysides by car, he finds his greatest relaxation and pleasure. He is an enormously hard worker--notwithstanding his small output--and he often works from eight to ten hours a day upon his composition, when he is in the white heat of inspiration. He constantly changes and revises, so that a full day's work may produce no more than a dozen bars. He has most recently completed his latest opera, Lulu, which has taken him six to produce; and he will shortly begin work upon two other music-dramas, one of them based on a tragedy by Wedekind.Principal works by Alban Berg:
OPERA: Wozzeck; Lulu.
ORCHESTRA: Five Songs with Orchestra; Three Orchestral Pieces; Kammersinfonie; Der Wein.
CHAMBER MUSIC:String Quartet; Four Sketches for Clarinet and Piano; Lyric Suite for String Quartet.
Songs, piano compositions, etc.

About Alban Berg:

Rosenfeld Paul. Modern Tendencies in Music; Saminsky Lazare. Music of Our Day.

Chesterian n.s. 26:33October 1922.


Lord Berners 1883.

GERALD HUGH TYRWHITT- WILSON BERNERS was born at Apley Park, Bridgnorth, on September 18, 1883. He was educated at Eton, and a great part of his youth was spent in travel, thru France, Germany and Italy, in the study of languages as a preparation for diplomatic service. Musical study was pursued merely because it was to Berners a very pleasant diversion--under a strict martinet who, as Berners has commented so pleasantly, convinced him even more forcefully that diplomacy and not music was to be his career. From 1909 to 1919. Berners was an honorary attaché at Constantinople and Rome. Music, however, was exerting such an enormous influence over him that, shortly after his return from Rome, he decided to apply himself

more seriously than ever before to its study and to artistic creation.

Fortunately, at this time he came into contact with two composers whose liberated views on music and unorthodox beliefs impressed Berners so profoundly that he decided to become their pupil. These two composers--Igor Stravinsky and Alfredo Casella--were amazed at the enormous promise and originality of their pupil's early, compositions, and they urged him to adopt composition as his life work. They were merely voicing Berner's inmost dream and wish--and so, extending a gesture of farewell towards all diplomatic positions, Berners entered upon the career of a composer.

The first of his compositions was a setting of Heine Du Bist Wie Eine Blume which--characteristic of Berners' unorthodoxy--was treated in the light of a passage in one of Heine's biographies which stated that the verse was written to a small white pig. This was followed by several more important works--including Three Little Funeral Marches and Fragments Psychologiques --in which Berners' very peculiar style reached further development.

"Though the craftsmanship of this music is highly admirable," wrote Eugene Goossens, concerning the Funeral Marches, "the real Berners idiom only fully reveals itself in the work which immediately follows. . . . I refer to the

____________________
Berners: Bŭr′nŭrs

-22-

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