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Object #78 / Arnold Schönberg: Nightingale

Gloss on a polemic newspaper article
April 10, 1923

Arnold Schönberg Center, Wien

“At the same time, to a certain extent he [Schönberg] succeeded in defining the rhythm [of the nightingale’s song]. But only to a certain extent: for it became clear to him that although the verses of the nightingale were probably set to a well-assigned meter (because he was able to perceive regularity), it was likely that the numbers subdividing these measures would hardly prove as simple as those used in the musical meter […] But he [the composer Schönberg] recalls even today that (as the music was written about 10–12 years ago at Villa Lepcke in Zehlendorf near Berlin, where there were nightingales, unlike in Mödling) even back then he considered whether the nightingale sings a more or less artistic song than the blackbird.”

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