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WSLB 33 : 1-1?-09

Handwritten letter from Schenker to Emil Hertzka (UE), undated, January 1?, 19091
 See OJ 5/16, [4], December 25, 1908, for an unsent draft of this letter

[UE stamp:]
Eingegangen: ..............................
Beantwortet: 7. I. 09 P. .............

Sehr geehrter Herr Direktor !

Besten Dank für die Zusendung der Londoner Briefe u. Retournierung meiner letzten Arbeit.2

Als Stritzko|3 die Tab. druckte, war Strauss’ Salome noch nicht da,4 u. daher fehlte “Heckelphon.” Nun wäre es freilich, auch zu Ehren der im Jänner kommenden “Elektra,” nützlich, das Heckelphon zu placieren.5 Aber wo? Ein neues Bild dieses Instrumentes zu verfertigen, widerstrebt Ihnen, u. vielleicht nicht mit Unrecht, man darf solche Dinge nicht allzu tragisch nehmen. Meinen Sie aber, daß es eigens nur auf das Heckelphon auf einem separaten Blättchen hinzuweisen, von besonderem Geschmack wäre?6 Mit Recht würde man sagen: Wann schon ein Blatt vorgedruckt wird, warum wird nicht auch das Übrige erklärt? Ich habe im § 3 des Heckelphons, nebst der Altflöte u. Baßklarinette ausdrücklich gedacht, – aber das war Ihnen zuviel.7

Und da kommen wir auf die Hauptschwierigkeit. Sie möchten etwas, u. möchtens wieder nicht. “Ohne Umsturz” heißt das in Ihre[m] {2} Brief,8 wie auch in Ihrer Redewendung, u. nicht eine Secunde lang w[äre][?] Ihnen bewußt, daß Sie ein – Unmögliches, Unausführbares verlangen. (Nebstbei9 hatte ich auch von Ihrem letzten Auftrag bez. das Wohltemp. Klavier|10 den Eindruck, daß weder H. Dir. Bopp noch Sie die aufgetragene Arbeit anders auffassen, als daß sie in 3–4 Monaten prompt ins Haus geliefert werden könne, u. daß Sie Herrn Busoni die Dauer u. Intensität seiner hierauf verwendeten Arbeit einfach nicht glauben würden).*) Sie planen einen Geväert, u. Berlioz|11in nuce,” u. da ich Ihnen in 4 §§12 eben diese Ausführung biete, ist sie Ihnen nicht recht. Andererseits möchten Sie doch etwas. Was? Einzelne Bemerkungen? Wird es[ smudged ] da, abgesehen von dem unästhetischen Eindruck, nicht erst recht[ corr ] nach Weiterem gefragt werden müssen? Müßte man sie nicht wieder erklären u. ausholen?

Mir geht es mit Ihnen in dieser Sache, wie mit dem Referenten im Extrablatt: er wünscht eine Skizze13 des Orch., so etwas wie eine Geschichte der Instrumentation, u. – – erkennt nicht, daß ich sie, freilich ohne Worte, (eine Art “Geschichte ohne Worte” wie es “Lieder ohne Worte” gegeben hat) in den Exempeln gegeben habe, u. darauf in der Einführung ^eigens^ hingewiesen[?] habe.

Ihr Engländer übersieht ebenfalls dieses u. ist auch sonst nicht glücklich in den Kritiken:

[ note at foot of p.2:]
*) Abgesehen noch von dem Verlegerinteresse, gerade gute Arbeiten etwas tiefer zu hängen, um sie nicht theuerer bezahlen zu müssen, als die schlechteren.

{3}
1) Es ist ein kollosaler Unterschied, wenn H. Mahillon|14 ein ”Vademecum du compositeur“ verfertigt, ich aber–, laut Einführung ! – die Tab. fürs Publikum (in der Hauptsache) schreibe.15

2) Man kann bei Berlioz-Strauss, u. Gevaert, trotz dem Preis von 18 Fl, noch 1000 Fragen stellen, zumal bei Mahillon,– was will das sagen? Der Käufer kauft um 60 Kr auf seine Gefahr, ebenso wie er z.B. bei Reclam, “Geschichte der Philosophie” um 60 Kr kauft.16 Versteht er so diese nicht, kann er das Geld von Reclam nicht rückfordern. Auch ich mußte beim Käufer etwas voraussetzen, es gieng ja anders nicht!

3) Es ist überflüssig, auch bei den Saxophonen die Stimmungen der Militärkapellen, die in B und Es, in einem literarischen Werk tragisch zu nehmen. Militärkapellmeister machen keine Literatur, u. ihr Publikum, das bei Musikproduktionen ißt, kauft auch keine Tabellen vor Liebe zur – Kunst! (Ich habe übrigens bei den Saxhörnern, u. Flöten auch den B– u.-Es-Stimmungen Rechnung getragen.) Und endlich sind Saxophone überhaupt nicht so ernst zu nehmen, darüber entscheiden nur große Meister.

4) Ich konnte die Tab. nicht schon von Haus aus auf Engl. u. Frankreich zustutzen, nach wie vor ist Deutschl. in der Tonkunst maßgebend. {4} Örtliche Differenzen kommen nicht in Betracht.

D’Indy u. Massenet setze ich niemals unter dort, wo ich die großartigsten Instrumalvisionen unserer Meister anführe, das überlasse ich Ihrem famosen Engländer, der die genannten Komponisten offenbar für Meister hält. Es kreieren nach der Erfahrung der Geschichte auf dem Gebiete der Instrumentation nur die allergrößten Meister. Alles andere kommt auf die Dauer nicht in Betracht.

Vielleicht weiß Herr v. Wöss|17 irgend einen Ausweg, wie man das oder jenes (z.B. Heckelphon ) noch hineinbringen könnte, “ohne Umsturz,”18 wie Sie sagen. Eine andere Lösung, als ich sie schon geboten habe, weiß ich nicht, bin aber bereit, mich belehren zu lassen, sofern das nicht überflüssig viel Zeit in Anspruch nimmt. Denn, habe ich schon 1½ Wochen an die 4 §§ verloren, die mir bei den Korrecturen des II Bd.19 fehlen müssen, so möchte ich doch nicht weitere Zeit verlieren, wo mir jeder Zeitverlust einen Entgang auch an Tantiemen bedeutet.– Prosit Neujahr!

Mit ausgez. Hochachtung
Ir ergeb
[ sign'd: ] H Schenker

© Heirs of Heinrich Schenker.
© Transcription Ian D. Bent 2004.

Handwritten letter from Schenker to Emil Hertzka (UE), undated, January 1?, 19091
 See OJ 5/16, [4], December 25, 1908, for an unsent draft of this letter

[UE stamp:]
Received: ...............................
Answered: 1-7-09 P. .............

Dear Director,

Many thanks for sending the London letters and returning my last piece of work.2

When Stritzko3 printed the Tabelle, Strauß’s Salome did not yet exist,4 and that is why there is no [entry] “Heckelphone.” Now, I admit that it would be useful, as well as honoring Elektra, which is coming in January,5 to insert the heckelphone [into the Tabelle ]. But where? To prepare a new picture of this instrument goes against your wishes, and perhaps not unreasonably one might not think such a thing the end of the world. But do you really think that to call attention just to the heckelphone on a separate small sheet would be in good taste?6 People would reasonably ask: If one sheet has already been specially printed, why do not other things get explanations, too? I referred explicitly to the heckelphone in paragraph 3 alongside the alto flute and bass clarinet—but that was too much for you.7

And there we come up against the main difficulty. You would like something, then again not. That—to quote your {2} letter, your actual turn of phrase—is called “without our having an upheaval on our hands”8, and you are totally unaware that you are asking for something impossible, impracticable. (In that connection,9 I also had the impression from your last commission regarding the Well-tempered Clavier|10 that Director Bopp and you fondly imagined the commissioned work could be delivered within 3–4 months on the dot, and that you would simply not credit the time and intense effort that Mr. Busoni has expended on the work up to now—[ note at bottom of page:] quite apart from the interest the publisher has in downplaying those works that are good, so as not to have to pay more for them than for the poorer ones.) You envision a Gevaert and Berlioz11 in a nutshell, and when I offer you this very thing, accomplished in four paragraphs,12 it does not suit you. On the other hand, you must want something. What? Isolated remarks? Quite apart from the unaesthetic impression [that would give], will it not have to be called in question in no time at all? Would we not have to explain and rehearse them all over again?

Over this, I find myself in just the same position with the reviewer in the [ Wiener ] Extrablatt as I do with you: he wants a sketch13 of the orchestra, a sort of history of instrumentation, and – – [he] fails to realize that I have provided one already in the examples, admittedly without words (a sort of “History without Words” just as there are “Songs without Words”), and have drawn attention to it specifically in the Introduction.

Likewise, your Englishman overlooks this; and in other respects, too, his criticisms are not felicitous:

{3} 1) There is a vast difference between M. Mahillon’s14 producing a “ Vademecum for the composer” and on the other hand, my writing the Tabelle, in accordance with the Introduction, (primarily) for the public.15

2) Despite the price of 18 Florins one is left with a thousand unanswered questions when reading Berlioz-Strauss, and Gevaert—even more so with Mahillon. What does that tell us? The buyer purchases [it] for 60 Kroner at his own risk, just as when, for example, he buys Reclam’s History of Philosophy for 60 Kroner.16 He cannot, merely because he fails to understand this, claim his money back from Reclam. I, too, had to take some things for granted about the purchaser [of my Tabelle]: there is just no other way!

3) It is unnecessary even in the case of saxophones to take those military band instruments that are built in B flat and in E flat seriously in a repertory-based work.17 Military bandmasters do not make repertory, and their public, which consumes[?] music productions, does not buy tables out of a love of – art! (Incidentally, with the saxhorns and flutes, I have in fact taken account of those built in B flat and E flat.) And after all, saxophones are not really to be taken all that seriously: only great composers decide on such matters.

4) I was from the outset unable accommodate England and France in the Tabelle: It is Germany, when all is said and done, that is the deciding force in music. {4} Local differences do not come into the equation.

I would never include D’Indy and Massenet among in any place in which I cite the most sublime instrumental visions of our masters. I leave that to your good old Englishman, who clearly considers those two composers masters. History shows that in the realm of instrumentation only the greatest masters of all are creative. Everything else in the long run is beneath consideration.

Perhaps Mr. von Wöss18 can think of a solution to how we could still squeeze this or that (e.g. the heckelphone) in “without our having an upheaval on our hands,”19 as you put it. I cannot think of any solution other than those that I have already offered, but I am prepared to be instructed so long as it does not involve an excessive amount of time. For, since I have already lost one-and-a-half weeks to the four paragraphs that I had to take out of the time for the proofs of vol. II20, then I would certainly not wish to lose further time, when every loss of time also means losing out on royalties. Cheers for the New Year!

With kind regards,
Yours truly,
[ sign'd: ] H. Schenker

© Translation Ian D. Bent 2005.

COMMENTARY:
Format: 4-p letter, oblong sheet folded vertically, recto and verso; holograph letter and signature
Sender address:
Recipient address:

FOOTNOTES:

1 Letter undated. The outer limits are the date of the draft, OJ 5/16, [4], December 25, 1908, UE’s date of response, January 7, 1909, and Schenker’s next letter, WSLB 34, January 4, 1909. The tentative date of January 1 (Friday) is based on S’s final remark, “Prosit Neujahr!”, but January 2 (Saturday) and 3 (Sunday) are possibles.

2 H had forwarded on to S some letters from an (unnamed) Englishman regarding the Instrumentations-Tabelle (see fn8. below), and returned to him the Supplementary Remarks that S had prepared for the "large edition" (=1st edn) of that work but that H had rejected as occupying too much space (WSLB 29, December 16, 1908 (submission); OC 52/399-401, December 21 (rejection)). These Remarks were eventually published in the 1912 edition.

3 Stritzko & Co., Vienna I, Hoher Markt 3, Director Josef Stritzko, existed c.1890–1929, from 1912 on under the proprietorship of Carl Sutter: see diary entries dated April 4 through November 4, 1906, OJ 1/5, pp.12-25, and OJ 5/16, [4], December 25, 1908 (draft, unsent). Stritzko was associated with the origins of the Instrumentations-Tabelle around 1906; it is unclear how the pseudonym “Artur Niloff” (phonetic anagram of “Violin,” perhaps alluding to Schenker’s closest friend, Moriz Violin) factors into this.

4 R. Strauß’s Salome was first performed at the Dresden Court Opera on December 9, 1905, and in Austria in Graz on May 16, 1906, and Vienna on May 25, 1907. It was the first work to make prominent use of the instrument, of which Heckel had produced his first model in 1904.

5 Elektra was first performed at the Dresden State Opera on January 25, 1909, and in Vienna on March 24, 1909.

6 S may be alluding to the recent situation in the second edition of Ornamentik in which he had called for the correcting of a music example and H argued for the insertion of a separate sheet ( Blatt ): OC 52/24: August 25, 1908.

7 “too much” for H in the sense that he rejected S's own materials (see fn2 above, fn12 below). S presumably means "contrabass clarinet," as he had in his draft (OJ 5/16, [4], December 25, 1908). The passage read: „So sind z. B. in der Familie der Flöten die ehemals gebräuchlichen tieferen Arten, nämlich die Alt- und Baßflöten außer Gebrauch geraten; in der Familie der Oboe ... in jüngster Zeit Versuche mit einer Bariton-Oboe (Heckelphon) ...; der Klarinettenfamilie fehlt, um im praktischen Gebrauch wirklich komplett zu erscheinen, nur eine Kontrabaß-Klarinette ...“ (So, for example, in the flute family the deeper varieties, namely the alto and bass flutes, which were formerly in use, fell out of use; in the oboe family [there have been] experiments most recently with a baritone oboe (heckelphone) ...; all that is lacking in the clarinet family for it to be complete in practical terms is a contrabass clarinet ...“) The heckelphone’s place in the Tabelle would have been between Nos. 10 and 11, the alto and bass flutes' between Nos. 7 and 8, and the contrabass clarinet’s between Nos. 19 and 20.

8 Cf. fn2. above. This letter responds to the last sentence of Hertzka’s letter OC 52/31, December 23, 1908: “I should be grateful if you would take careful note of their contents [i.e. that of the letter (H speaks in the singular, S of “letters”) and the book by Victor-Charles Mahillon (1841–1924): Le matériel sonore des orchestres de symphonie, d’harmonie et de fanfares, ou vade mecum du compositeur (Brussels: publr?, 1889, 5/1920)], and then very kindly let me have them both back. If you find something or other in the work pertinent to the completion of your Instrumentations-Tabelle in its present form, without our having an upheaval on our hands, that would be very welcome.” (“Ich bitte Sie daher, von deren Inhalt genauest Kenntnis zu nehmen und mir dann beides freundlichst zu retournieren. Wenn Sie das eine oder andere in dem Werke finden, was zur Komplettierung Ihrer Instrumental-Tabelle in der gegenwärtigen Form dienen kann, ohne dass wir einen Umsturz vorzunehmen haben, so wäre das ja immerhin ganz erwünscht.”)

9 Nebstbei: Austrian for Nebenbei.

10 See OC 52/399–401, December 18, 1908 for the proposal, and OJ 5/16, [5] (draft) and WSLB 31 (finished letter), December 21, 1908, for S’s reply.

11 i.e. François-Auguste Gevaert, Traité général d’instrumentation (Ghent & Liège: Gevaert, 1863 = Nouveau traité, 1885) and Cours méthodique d’orchestration (Paris & Brussels: Lemoine, 1890); Hector Berlioz, Grand traité d’instrumentation et d’orchestration modernes (Paris: publr?, 1844); Berlioz-Strauss: Berlioz, Grand traité, Ger. trans. A. Dörffel [1864], rev. R.Strauss: Instrumentationslehre (Leipzig: Peters, [1904–05])

12 i.e. the four paragraphs of Supplementary Remarks (see fn2. above). S is clearly annoyed that while rejecting S’s own Remarks H should be inviting inclusion of material derived from a Belgian author (nor yet an English correspondent)!

13 Skizze: he evidently intends a verbal outline, “a sort ... instrumentation” presumably being in apposition to this.

14 See fn8. above.

15 "Zur Einführung" (1st edn, unchanged in later edns): „ And so, may our Table be granted not only to be of use to young people in their studies, but also to satisfy the interests of the public at large, which has in recent times begun to turn its attention so encouragingly to the orchestral repertory.“ (“Und so möge es denn unserer Tabelle beschieden sein, nicht bloß der studierenden Jugend Nutzen zu bringen, sondern auch das Interesse des größeren Publikums zu befriedigen, das in letzter Zeit auf so erfreuliche Weise der Orchesterliteratur seine Teilnahme zuzuwenden begann.“)

16 Perhaps Albert Schwegler: Geschichte der Philosophie im Umriß. Ein Leitfaden zur Übersicht (Leipzig, Philipp Reclam, c. 1905): it is interesting that S has abandoned the example of Goethe’s Faust that he developed so elaborately in the draft (OJ 5/16, [4], December 25, 1908) and switched to this work, forfeiting the chance to liken himself to the great textual editors of German literature. The only common element is the publisher Reclam.

17 This is a difficult passage. By Literatur, S, in his writings, meant either “classical repertory” or “secondary literature.” The Tabelle is essentially a non-literary work: it is a table with symbols; moreover, it is repertory-based in that it provides citations from the classical repertory to illustrate most of the instruments defined in the table—a feature that S stresses in this letter. This is in keeping with his claim that the Tabelle is for the public (which is more concerned with resultant sound than with technical production). Nevertheless, since the table contains much about production, and since it includes keys for the transposing instruments it gives, it is possible to render this passage with “literary work” and “do not write literary works.”

18 Josef Venantius von Wöss (1863-1943) joined UE in 1908 as musikalischer Redakteur (according to H. Heinsheimer and Stefan, P. eds.: 25 Jahre Neue Musik 1901–1906: Jahrbuch 1926 der Universal-Edition (Vienna: UE, 1906), p.11), having previously been a proofreader at the printing firm Waldheim Eberle form 1889. He was also a composer and writer on music.

19 See fn8. above.

20 Vol. II of Neue Musikalische Theorien und Fantasien, published by J. G. Cotta, was originally intended to include the whole of Kontrapunkt. Schenker had been receiving proofs for Kontrapunkt since October 1908 (WSLB 24, October 31, 1908), and the currently scheduled publication date was March or April 1909 (OJ 9/31, [20], October 15, 1908). However, the work was subsequently split into two volumes (OJ 9/31, [23], June 1, 1909), of which Book I was published in 1910, Book II in 1922. Schenker blames UE for the delays on the Kontrapunkt proofs: three months on revisions to Beitrag zur Ornamentik, a week and a half abortively to the Instrumentations-Tabelle.

SUMMARY:
[Niloff: Instrumentations-Tabelle: ] Acks London letters and return of Supplementary Remarks [with OC 52/31, December 23, 1908]. The heckelphone was not included because it did not exist when the Tabelle was first published. — H makes unreasonable demands. — S answers criticisms by the reviewer in the [Wiener] Extrablatt. — S responds to Englishman’s comments: Mahillon writes for the composer, S for the public; unnecessary to include military band instruments constructed in B flat and E flat; S could not accommodate English and French music because German music sets the standard.

© Commentary, Footnotes, Summary Ian D. Bent 2005.

Bent, Ian
Schenker, Heinrich
[Niloff: Instrumentations-Tabelle: ] Acks London letters and return of Supplementary Remarks [with OC 52/31, December 23, 1908]. The heckelphone was not included because it did not exist when the Tabelle was first published. — H makes unreasonable demands. — S answers criticisms by the reviewer in the [Wiener] Extrablatt. — S responds to Englishman’s comments: Mahillon writes for the composer, S for the public; unnecessary to include military band instruments constructed in B flat and E flat; S could not accommodate English and French music because German music sets the standard.
DE
Cambridge University Faculty of Music-Ian Bent
IPR: Heirs of Heinrich Schenker; Transcription, Translation, Commentary, Footnotes, and Summary: Ian D. Bent 2005.
Schenker, Heinrich; Hertzka, Emil; UE; Stritzko; Niloff; Instrumentations-Tabelle; supplement; Englishman; London; Mahillon, Victor; public; reader; Reclam; Geschichte der Philosophie; History of Philosophy; price; alto flute; bass clarinet; heckelphone; Strauss, Richard; Salome; Elektra; Well-tempered Clavier; Busoni, Ferruccio; France; England; Germany; military band music; military bandmasters; repertory; Literatur; D'Indy; Massenet; Extrablatt; review; Lieder ohne Worte; Gevaert, François-Auguste; Berlioz, Hector; instrumentation; orchestration; Traité; Wöss, Josef Venantius von; New Year
Handwritten letter from Schenker to Emil Hertzka (UE), dated January 1?, 1909
letter
Hertzka, Emil
WSLB 33
1909-01-01
2005-04-13
Stritzko
All reasonable steps have been taken to locate the heirs of Heinrich Schenker. Any claim to intellectual rights on this document should be addressed to the Schenker Correspondence Project, Faculty of Music, University of Cambridge, at [email protected].
letter; holograph message and signature
Universal Edition Archive (1909-1976)—on permanent loan to the Stadt- und Landesbibliothek Wien (1976-)
IPR: Heirs of Heinrich Schenker; Image: Universal Edition, A.G.; Transcription, Translation, Commentary, Footnotes, and Summary: Ian D. Bent.
Vienna
1909

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