A Windfall of Musicians: Hitler's Emigres and Exiles in by Dorothy Lamb Crawford

By Dorothy Lamb Crawford

This e-book is the 1st to ascertain the bright accumulating of composers, conductors, and different musicians who fled Nazi Germany and arrived within the la quarter. Musicologist Dorothy Lamb Crawford seems heavily on the lives, inventive paintings, and impression of 16 performers, fourteen composers, and one opera degree director, who joined this massive migration starting within the Thirties. a few during this staff have been recognized after they fled Europe, others could achieve acceptance within the younger musical tradition of l. a., and nonetheless others struggled to set up themselves in an atmosphere frequently immune to musical innovation. Emphasizing person voices, Crawford offers brief pix of Igor Stravinsky, Arnold Schoenberg, and the opposite musicians whereas additionally contemplating their effect as a group—in the movie undefined, in track associations in and round l. a., and as lecturers who expert the following new release. The ebook unearths a uniquely vivid period while Southern California grew to become a hub of exceptional musical expertise.

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There Schoenberg threw his considerable energy into plans to rescue Europe’s Jews, setting aside his composing. In July he rejoined the Jewish religion in Paris, thirty-five years after leaving Judaism as a twenty-fouryear-old in Vienna. In Germany in the early 1930s, Stravinsky’s works were the most often performed of all non-German composers. With his German publisher Schott’s EUROPE 15 frequent advice, Stravinsky campaigned to maintain his status in the country that provided the greatest share of his income.

In itself, this extraordinary international gathering of talent of all kinds around Hollywood became an attraction to musical émigrés settled elsewhere in the United States. Americans amongst filmdom’s celebrities of the time—notably com- PARADISE? 32 posers George Gershwin, the recently arrived George Antheil, and composeractor Lionel Barrymore—also supported and welcomed the musicians fleeing Hitler’s Europe. Barrymore and Mickey Rooney would both study composition with Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco, and each would produce a symphony.

25 Because of the universality of their creative language, the émigré musicians had an advantage over writers whose languages were foreign to Americans. This difference played a large role in the musicians’ choice to remain in their new homeland until the ends of their lives. In so doing, the European musicians helped bring Southern California’s musical culture to maturity. In turn, the émigré musicians were changed by this experience: Los Angeles became a place where Hugo Strelitzer could dream of, plan, and execute a new American approach to opera training; it was a place where Otto Klemperer, always the frustrated composer, could study composition with Schoenberg; where Schoenberg would return periodically to tonality in his desire to have his music more widely appreciated; where Stravinsky would transcend his antipathy toward Sergey Rachmaninoff and become so influenced by Schoenberg that Ingolf Dahl would find the Stravinskys’ living room filled with the sounds of Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht.

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