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Dialogue of Cultures
TABLE OF CONTENTS
About the Texts
About the Artists
For a Marian Anderson
Howard University, Rankin Memorial Chapel
- CONCERT PROGRAM -
Lift Every Voice and Sing
|Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen!
Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen!
Was der Himmel und die Welt
An Geschoüpfen in sich haült
Müsse dessen Ruhm erhoühen,
Und wir wollen unser'm Gott
Gleichfalls jetzt ein Opfer bringen
Das er uns in Kreuz und Not
Allezeit hat beigestanden;
Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen!
Ach, ich fühl's
Ach, ich fühl's, es ist verschwunden,
Ewig hin der Liebe Glück!
Nimmer kommt ihr, Wonnestunden,
Meinem Herzen mehr zurück!
Sieh, Tamino, diese Traünen
Fliessen, Trauter, dir allein.
Fühlst du nicht der Liebe Sehnen,
So wird Ruh im Tode sein!
Meine Liebe ist grün
Meine Liebe ist grün wie der Fliederbusch,
Und meine Lieb ist schoün wie die Sonne;
Die glaünzt wohl herab auf den Fliederbusch
Und füllt ihn mit Duft und mit Wonne.
Meine Liebe hat Schwingen der Nachtigall,
Und wiegt sich in blühendem Flieder,
Und jauchzet und singet vom Duft berauscht
Viel liebestrunkene Lieder.
Ave Maria! Jungfrau mild,
|Exalt God in all lands!
Exalt God in all lands!
All that heaven and earth
Contains by way of creatures
Must magnify his glory
And we, too, want to bring our God
Likewise now an offering of thanks
That on the cross and in misery he
Always stood by us;
Exalt God in all lands!
Ah, I feel it
Ah, I feel it, all is gone now,
Gone forever fortunate love!
Never more come hours of rapture
Back to my heart.
See, Tamino, these tears
Flowing, beloved, for you alone.
If you feel no lover's longing,
Then will peace be in death!
My love is green
My love is green as the lilac,
And my love is fair as the sun;
The sun gleams down on the lilac
And fills it with scent and joy.
He has nightingale's wings
Erlkönig (Elf King)
Listen for the four different voices of the narrator, the father, the boy, and the Elf King, as a father rides home with his ill child, who imagines the Elf King takes him away.
About the Artists
One hundred years ago, the National Conservatory of Music was initiated as an attempt to institutionalize in the United States a program of Classical music performance and composition. Its founder, Jeanette Thurber, not only brought the great musician Antonin Dvorak to the United States to direct the conservatory, but also successfully caused Congress to pass legislation to build such an institution in the nation's capital.
One hundred years later, no such institution yet exists. The art of Classical composition, both in the United States and throughout the world, is threatened with extinction. Yet the appetite for such inspiring art is greater today than at any time in history.
Dvorak's work in America was closely followed by Johannes Brahms, who, in 1893, made it clear that he agreed with and supported Dvorak's emphasis on the use of the African-American Spiritual specifically, and "Negro music" more generally, as the chief source of material for Classical composition in the United States. This could only have been because both Dvorak and Brahms heard in the spirituals the "seed-crystal," or "spark," from which all great poetic compositions arise.
The working-through, or "thorough-composition," of such "sparks" is the domain of Classical art that was the gift Dvorak sought to impart to students and musicians such as Maurice Arnold, Joseph Douglass, and Will Marion Cook. The term for this art is Motivführung. It is the secret to the "unity of effect" achieved in the compositions of Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Schubert, Robert Schumann, Frédéric Chopin, and Brahms, among others. Brahms helped Dvorak perfect his knowledge of this principle, and it was this which was the subject of his composition classes at the National Conservatory in New York City. A century later, the teaching of this art has all but disappeared.
The production of bel canto voices was also one of the areas of concentration of the conservatory, which had begun with voice instruction as its primary emphasis. Under Dvorak, who acted as its head from 1892—-95, its program of instruction was expanded.
On April 8, 1993, the day of Marian Anderson's death, a symposium was sponsored by the Schiller Institute at Carnegie Recital Hall. There, the great Italian tenor Carlo Bergonzi asserted that without a return to the natural tuning of the voice to the "Verdi 'A,' " or a pitch of C=256 cycles per second—a "lower" pitch—it was possible that the great operatic voices of the past could not be reproduced, due to damage caused to the voice by artificially raised tunings. It is also true that the teachings of the true bel canto art—an art which Marian Anderson was able to learn from Giuseppe Borghetti in the humble surroundings of a Philadelphia neighborhood, for free—is today virtually unavailable in the most prestigious universities and music schools at any price.
It is contended, correctly, that music is a "universal language." It is the tying of the most noble of human emotions to the clearest declarations of truth available to the soul, which constitutes the rigorous production of beauty. Thus, when musical composition is at its best, the listener is urged, and moved, not by taste or through titillation, but rather by the inner workings of the listener's own creative mind, made audible through the medium of musical composition and performance.
The investigation of Welsh, Scottish, English, Tyrolean, Russian, etc. themes by Beethoven, Haydn, Schumann, Mendelssohn, Brahms, and others, in both vocal and instrumental settings (for example, theme and variations) demonstrates a necessary connection of the Classical compositional tradition with the elevation of language through sung poetry. In 1894, exactly 100 years ago, Brahms, partly in response to Dvorak's work with Harry Burleigh and others in America, finished the setting of 49 German Volkslieder, using the Motivführung principle, through sometimes the slightest of changes, to manifest the undisclosed potentials, and even greatness of these songs. It is the wellspring from which a new Classical art might be born, since it seeks to state the most developed musical principles in the simplest form, and with the greatest economy of means.
But unfortunately, few today take such Lieder as the laboratory for discovery of, experimentation with the fundamentals of Classical method. Thus, many underestimate and fail to understand precisely how to utilize the African-American spiritual as a Classical form, spoken or sung. (How differently might secondary school students study, perform, and understand the speeches of Dr. Martin Luther King, were such a Motivführung principle taught in bel canto music classes!)
It is proposed that the Marian Anderson National Conservatory of Music—not a building, but an idea—raise the need for precisely such musical and artistic practice. Like Robert Schumann's society, the Davidsbund, we should seek to rid the arts of the rule of the cultural (and countercultural) Philistines. This would be done through a movement composed of mass choruses, educated through seminars, concerts, and symposia, intended in these troubled times to bring back into focus the need to re-establish the arts as the center of our lives.
The Schiller Institute, founded by Helga Zepp-LaRouche, takes Friedrich Schiller's work "On the Aesthetic Education of Man" as the conceptual premise for its work, of which its effort for a National Conservatory is a part. For as Schiller says, "it is through beauty that one proceeds to true freedom."
Founded in 1984, the institute has become internationally recognized for its campaigns both in the area of culture, as well as that of human rights. In 1992, the institute founded an International Civil Rights Movement, together with veterans of the Martin Luther King movement such as Rev. James Bevel and Mrs. Amelia Boynton Robinson (who is vice-chairman of the institute).
During 1993, the institute sponsored several concerts in the United States and Europe, which were dedicated to the living memory of Marian Anderson. Since 1988, the institute has become well-known for its campaign to naturalize the pitch at C=256 Hz, an initiative which has been endorsed by many of the world's best-known musicians. All of the Marian Anderson concerts, for example, were performed at this "Verdi tuning."
The institute's tuning campaign was initiated by Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr. Writings by LaRouche on this topic have been published in the magazine Fidelio, and researchers associated with LaRouche, such as Kathy Wolfe, John Sigerson, and Renée Sigerson, have authored a two-volume study of the principles of musical tuning in the voice and in the "Beethoven orchestra." Volume I of this work is currently in print.
To the Editor of the Herald:
I was deeply interested in the article in last Sunday's Herald, for the writer struck a note that should be sounded throughout America. It is my opinion that I find a sure foundation in the Negro melodies for a new national school of music, and my observations have already convinced me that the young musicians of this country need only intelligent directions, serious application and a reasonable amount of public support and applause to create a new musical school in America. This is not a sudden discovery on my part. The light has gradually dawned on me....
In the National Conservatory of Music, founded and presided over by Mrs. Jeannette M. Thurber, is provided as good a school as can be found elsewhere. The masters are competent in the highest sense and the spirit of the institution is absolutely catholic. A fresh proof of the breadth of purpose involved in this conservatory is the fact that it has been opened without limit or reservation to the Negro race....
It is to the poor that I turn for musical greatness. The poor work hard; they study seriously. Rich people are apt to apply themselves lightly to music, and to abandon the painful toil to which every strong musician must submit without complaint and without rest. Poverty is no barrier to one endowed by nature with musical talent. It is a spur. It keeps the mind loyal to the end. It stimulates the student to great efforts...."
Dr. Raymond Jackson, concert pianist and Professor of Music and Coordinator of Applied Music Studies at Howard University, delivered these remarks as the opening statement at a Schiller Institute seminar on music and the movement for a Marian Anderson National Conservatory of Music, held on Feb. 22, 1994 in Washington, D.C.
In order to see the sense of beauty that really enriches and enhances and uplifts mankind, we have to begin to see and to transmit that sense of beauty in all that we do, in all that we communicate through our own expression of art.
That will include, of course, teaching; because so much of teaching today becomes so commercial and so much a matter of intellectualism, that we sometimes lose that beautiful essence which we found in Marian Anderson and in Roland Hayes and in others of the great artists.
We can never separate music and the church, because the church certainly was the foundation for so many of these great artists. I don't know one of them that did not come out from some influence of the church. Bob McFerrin did, Marian Anderson did, Leontyne Price did, Roland Hayes did. I don't think one of us can be separated from that spirit.
I think what makes their art and our art great, is the fact that it is endowed with a spiritual content. It's not endowed with something that says "Hear me, I have something to say to you. I want to be great. I want to make a lot of money, I want to be in the top ten on the charts, and so forth." Instead, it says, "I have a mission and a message that need to be communicated, and that message is divine."
This goes all the way back to the time of Bach. When he composed, he always composed for the glory of God. He put that at the top of his music. And I think we need to see that first and foremost, because that in turn is what transmits and translates and inspires mankind.
Also, we need to know that it is not an individual effort. We all do what we need to do individually, but we must bring everybody in on this collective activity.
One of the things that I enjoyed so much in my upbringing was the fact that I not only had piano lessons, I had a chance to share my talent with other musicians, with other aspiring musicians. They didn't necessarily say they were going to be professional musicians, and I didn't say then that I was going to be a professional musician. But together, in the schools and in the churches and in the different music clubs that were throughout the state, throughout the city, we made music together, and we made music of the highest order. There was a structure. There was a sentiment, so to speak, of what kind of music we were preparing.
We were being rewarded. I think that is important, too, the fact that you have an incentive, you have something that you're going to achieve from applying that incentive.
Now the schools are being cut in the funding of music, and saying it's not important any more, because we have to give more to science, we have to give more to math and all of this sort of thing. This is the greatest destruction of the development of children that we could possibly imagine, because it's negating the development of the spirit, and if we don't develop the spirit and enrich it and feed it, then there's nothing that all of the "head knowledge" in the world can do to make a whole human being, without the arts.
So, somehow we're going to have to communicate right back into the school systems, to show that what music and art will do to the human being will replace the guns and the knives that we have to pull out of their bags and out of their pockets when they go in. I have never yet heard of somebody who goes to school with a violin who has a gun in the violin case. Never.
It will replace all of that if we just stop being so blind to the fact that we have this intellectualism going on, rather than a search for beauty which in turn will include the intellectual. No matter what we do, we must be sure that we're enriching the spirit of all and the sense of beauty of all, whatever form it takes.
The growing tendency of some of our musicians to utilize the melodies of our spirituals for fox trots, dance numbers and sentimental songs is, I feel, a serious menace to the artistic standing and development of our race.
These melodies are our prized possession. They were created for a definite purpose, and are designed to demonstrate and perpetuate the deepest aesthetic endowment of the race.
In them we have a mine of musical wealth that is everlasting. Into their making was poured the aspiration of a race in bondage, whose religion—intensely felt—was their whole hope and comfort, and the only vehicle through which their inner spirits soared free. They rank with the great folk music of the world and are among the loveliest of chanted prayers.
Now, since this body of folk song expresses the soul of a race, it is a holy thing. To use it and not artificialize or cheapen it, calls for reverence and true devotion to its spiritual significance. Yet, these delinquent musicians contemptuously disregard these traditions for personal, commercial gain.
Their use of the melodies debases the pure meaning of the tunes, converting and perverting them into tawdry dance measures or maudlin popular songs. Their work is meretricious, sacreligious and wantonly destructive. It offends the aesthetic feelings of all true musicians—white and black—and because some of us have endeavored never to sink the high standard of our art, or commercialize the sacred heritage of our people's songs, but rather to revere and exalt it as a vital proof of the Negro's spiritual ascendance over oppression and humiliation, we feel deeply that the willful, persistent, superficial distortion of our folk songs is shockingly reprehensible.
When you think about music, don't think about entertainment, or some fool jiggin' on the beach. Think of the greatness of music. Think ... of the work of Dvorak with Harry Burleigh. That was discovery! The spiritual was never the same after that, because its potentiality was discovered by applying principles which are the accumulated knowledge of music of centuries, embedded in that relationship and process. Think of things in that way, and then you see: Music is not entertainment. Music involves precisely, in the most demanding way, of the individual who wishes to become a professional musician, a good one, demands precisely in the most intense degree, the same kind of training and intensity as the greatest physical scientist.
There has been a folly popularized ... that you must separate Geisteswissenschaft from Naturwissenschaft, that art and science, in particular, are separate things, that they have no relationship to each other. But, on the contrary, the person who says that, knows nothing of either science or art. Because the same creative principle which we find emblazoned in the accomplishments of the past 600 years, which surpass everything done by mankind in the millions of years before, the principle of creativity, the same principle which marks man as in the image of God by virtue of these gifts of creative powers; that same principle is the essence of science, is the essence of music.
The Schiller Institute Presents
"For a Marian Anderson
Howard University, Rankin Memorial Chapel
1. Welcome and Introduction
Lunch Break: 1:30 PM to 3:PM
1. The Universal Nature of Classical Composition: The Lied and the African-American Spiritual
top: Marian Anderson
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