Posts Tagged “Humor”

Kyle Gann reports that more than twice as many students have signed up for his 12-tone Analysis seminar than for his Beethoven class, and then in the comments he expresses concern that some of those students may think the course is a 12-Step program.

Coincidentally, our crack musicological research team has recently uncovered the following from Serious Composers Anonymous:

A Method Of Ensuring the Supremacy of German Music for the Next Hundred Years Using Twelve Steps Related Only To Each Other

1. We admitted we were powerless over free atonality, and that our compositions had become unmanageable.

2. Came to believe that a Method greater than our own intuition could restore us to sanity.

3. Made a decision to turn our will and our music over to the care of The Twelve Tone Method as we understand it.

4. Made a searching and fearless inventory of the ways in which our music does not live up to the Great German Tradition.

5. Admitted to our professors, to ourselves, and to another Serious Composer the exact nature of our compositional failings.

6. Were entirely ready to have The Method remove all these defects of aesthetic.

7. Humbly asked The Method to remove our shortcomings.

8. Made a list of all twelve pitches in the octave, and became willing to treat them all as equals.

9. Made direct amends to dissonant intervals which we had heretofore enslaved with outdated rules of resolution to consonance.

10. Continued to strive to write music that is technically complex and antithetical to popularity, and when we discovered that we had written something pretty promptly admitted it.

11. Sought through practice and analysis to improve our appreciation of and facility with The Method as we understand it, praying only for knowledge of combinatoriality and the power to employ it effectively.

12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to those useless composers who have not yet come to feel the necessity of the dodecaphonic language, and to practice these principles in all our musical affairs whether the audience likes it or not.

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