(Born at Vienna, September 13, 1874)
RANGED FOR STRING ORCHESTRA, OP. 4
SCHOENBERG'S music, to be enjoyed, does not need either the original verse or the paraphrase. Indeed, it would be better if the argument were not printed for the concertgoer. As it is, he may be too anxious to discover the emancipated woman and the good, easy-going, complaisant man in the music, and be oblivious of the strains of beauty and passion. For this music, on the whole prolix, has beautiful and passionate pages of compelling eloquence. Other pages are a sandy, dreary waste. The impression would be still stronger, the music still more significant, if the composition were much shorter. Whether the music itself gains by the revision and enlargement, is a question that admits of discussion.
This piece, originally a sextet, was published in 1905; the arrangement for string orchestra was published in 1917. The sextet was composed in 1899.
An excerpt from Richard Dehmel's poem, "Weib und die Welt," is printed on a flyleaf of the score. When the sextet was first performed in New York by the Kneisel Quartet, Mr. Krehbiel paraphrased this poetic fragment as follows:
"Two mortals walk through a cold, barren grove. The moon sails over the tall oaks, which send their scrawny branches up through the