Igor Stravinsky and Robert Craft,
from Memories and Commentaries,
Doubleday & Company, Inc., Garden City, NY, p115-116

Robert Craft: Is any musical element still susceptible to radical exploitation and development?
Igor Stravinsky: Yes: pitch. I even risk a prediction that pitch will comprise the main difference between the "music of the future" and our music, and I consider that the most important aspect of electronic music is the fact that it can manufacture pitch. Our mid-twentieth-century situation, in regard to pitch, might perhaps be compared to that of the mid-sixteenth century, when, after Willaert and others had proved the necessity of equal temperament, the great pitch experiments began--Zarlino's quarter-tone instrument, Vincentino's thirty-nine-tones-to-the-octave archicembalo, and others. These instruments failed, of course, and the well-tempered clavier was established (though at least three hundred years before Bach), but our ears are more ready for such experiments now--mine are, at any rate. I had been watching the Kuramatengu play in Osaka one afternoon recently and had become accustomed to the Noh flute. Later, in a restaurant, I suddenly heard an ordinary flute, playing ordinary (well-tempered) music. I was shocked, music apart--I think I could keep the music apart anyway--by the expressive poverty of the tuning.

DX7, DX7II with Grey Matter Response E!

Elements of Noh-Kyogen (Source of sound example above.)

Noh music on

Lyrichord Reference Center Noh Music

Noh Music

The International Shakuhachi Society


December 4, 2003