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