Igor Stravinsky
Overview
 
Igor Fyodorovich Stravinsky (Russian: Игорь Фёдорович Стравинский, transliterated: Igorʹ Fëdorovič Stravinskij; ˌiɡərʲ ˌfʲjodɐrɐvʲɪtɕ strɐˈvʲinskʲɪj); 6 April 1971) was a Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

n, later naturalized French, and then naturalized American composer, pianist, and conductor.

He is widely acknowledged as one of the most important and influential composers of 20th century music.
Quotations

"The phenomenon of music is given to us with the sole purpose of establishing an order in things, including, and particularly, the co-ordination between man [sic] and time."

Quoted in DeLone et. al. (Eds.) (1975). Aspects of Twentieth-Century Music. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall. ISBN 0130493465, Ch. 3. from Igor Stravinsky' Autobiography (1962). New York: W.W. Norton & Co., Inc., p. 54.

Music's exclusive function is to structure the flow of time and keep order in it.

Quoted by Géza Szamosi, The Twin Dimensions: Inventing Time and Space (New York, 1986), p. 232

"One has a nose. The nose scents and it chooses. An artist is simply a kind of pig snouting truffles."

1962, quoted in Andriessen and Schoenberger, The Apollonian Clockwork (1989). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

"My music is best understood by children and animals."

Igor Stravinsky. The Observer, Oct 8, 1961

"It is the transcendent (or 'abstract' or 'self-contained') nature of music that the new so called concretism--Pop Art, eighteen-hour slices-of-reality films, musique concrete--opposes. But instead of bringing art and reality closer together, the new movement merely thins out the distinction."

Igor Stravinsky and Robert Craft (1982). Themes and Conclusions, p.188. Berkley: University of California Press.

"What I cannot follow are the manic-depressive fluctuations from total control to no control, from the serialization of all elements to chance."

Igor Stravinsky and Robert Craft (1982). Themes and Conclusions, p.33. Berkley: University of California Press.

"Much of the music is a Merzbild, put together from whatever came to hand. I mean, for example...the Alberti-bass horn solo accompanying the Messenger. I also mean the fusion of such widely divergent types of music as the Folies Bergeres tune at No. 40 ('The girls enter, kicking') and the Wagnerian 7th-chords at Nos. 58 and 74."

Igor Stravinsky and Robert Craft (1982). Dialogues, p.27.

"Composers combine notes, that's all."

Igor Stravinsky and Robert Craft (1982). Dialogues, p.52.

Encyclopedia
Igor Fyodorovich Stravinsky (Russian: Игорь Фёдорович Стравинский, transliterated: Igorʹ Fëdorovič Stravinskij; ˌiɡərʲ ˌfʲjodɐrɐvʲɪtɕ strɐˈvʲinskʲɪj); 6 April 1971) was a Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

n, later naturalized French, and then naturalized American composer, pianist, and conductor.

He is widely acknowledged as one of the most important and influential composers of 20th century music. He was named by Time magazine
Time (magazine)
Time is an American news magazine. A European edition is published from London. Time Europe covers the Middle East, Africa and, since 2003, Latin America. An Asian edition is based in Hong Kong...

 as one of the 100 most influential people of the century. He became a naturalized French citizen in 1934 and a naturalized US citizen
United States nationality law
Article I, section 8, clause 4 of the United States Constitution expressly gives the United States Congress the power to establish a uniform rule of naturalization. The Immigration and Naturalization Act sets forth the legal requirements for the acquisition of, and divestiture from, citizenship of...

 in 1945. In addition to the recognition he received for his compositions, he achieved fame as a pianist and a conductor, often at the premieres of his works.

Stravinsky's compositional career was notable for its stylistic diversity. He first achieved international fame with three ballets commissioned by the impresario
Impresario
An impresario is a person who organizes and often finances concerts, plays or operas; analogous to a film producer in filmmaking, television production and an angel investor in business...

 Sergei Diaghilev
Sergei Diaghilev
Sergei Pavlovich Diaghilev , usually referred to outside of Russia as Serge, was a Russian art critic, patron, ballet impresario and founder of the Ballets Russes, from which many famous dancers and choreographers would arise.-Early life and career:...

 and performed by Diaghilev's Ballets Russes
Ballets Russes
The Ballets Russes was an itinerant ballet company from Russia which performed between 1909 and 1929 in many countries. Directed by Sergei Diaghilev, it is regarded as the greatest ballet company of the 20th century. Many of its dancers originated from the Imperial Ballet of Saint Petersburg...

 (Russian Ballets): The Firebird
The Firebird
The Firebird is a 1910 ballet created by the composer Igor Stravinsky and choreographer Michel Fokine. The ballet is based on Russian folk tales of the magical glowing bird of the same name that is both a blessing and a curse to its captor....

(1910), Petrushka (1911/1947), and The Rite of Spring
The Rite of Spring
The Rite of Spring, original French title Le sacre du printemps , is a ballet with music by Igor Stravinsky; choreography by Vaslav Nijinsky; and concept, set design and costumes by Nicholas Roerich...

(1913). The Rite, whose premiere provoked a riot, transformed the way in which subsequent composers thought about rhythmic structure, and was largely responsible for Stravinsky's enduring reputation as a musical revolutionary, pushing the boundaries of musical design.

After this first Russian phase, Stravinsky turned to neoclassicism
Neoclassicism (music)
Neoclassicism in music was a twentieth-century trend, particularly current in the period between the two World Wars, in which composers sought to return to aesthetic precepts associated with the broadly defined concept of "classicism", namely order, balance, clarity, economy, and emotional restraint...

 in the 1920s. The works from this period tended to make use of traditional musical forms (concerto grosso
Concerto grosso
The concerto grosso is a form of baroque music in which the musical material is passed between a small group of soloists and full orchestra...

, fugue
Fugue
In music, a fugue is a compositional technique in two or more voices, built on a subject that is introduced at the beginning in imitation and recurs frequently in the course of the composition....

, symphony
Symphony
A symphony is an extended musical composition in Western classical music, scored almost always for orchestra. A symphony usually contains at least one movement or episode composed according to the sonata principle...

), frequently concealed a vein of intense emotion beneath a surface appearance of detachment or austerity, and often paid tribute to the music of earlier masters, for example J.S. Bach
Johann Sebastian Bach
Johann Sebastian Bach was a German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, and violinist whose sacred and secular works for choir, orchestra, and solo instruments drew together the strands of the Baroque period and brought it to its ultimate maturity...

 and Tchaikovsky
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (Russian: Пётр Ильи́ч Чайко́вский ; often "Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky" in English. His names are also transliterated "Piotr" or "Petr"; "Ilitsch", "Il'ich" or "Illyich"; and "Tschaikowski", "Tschaikowsky", "Chajkovskij"...

.

In the 1950s he adopted serial
Serialism
In music, serialism is a method or technique of composition that uses a series of values to manipulate different musical elements. Serialism began primarily with Arnold Schoenberg's twelve-tone technique, though his contemporaries were also working to establish serialism as one example of...

 procedures, using the new techniques over his last twenty years. Stravinsky's compositions of this period share traits with examples of his earlier output: rhythmic energy, the construction of extended melodic ideas out of a few two- or three-note cells, and clarity of form, of instrumentation, and of utterance.

He published a number of books throughout his career, almost always with the aid of a collaborator, sometimes uncredited. In his 1936 autobiography, Chronicles of My Life, written with the help of Walter Nouvel
Walter Nouvel
Walter Feodorovich Nouvel was a Russian émigré art-lover and writer. He co-wrote with Arnold Haskell a biography of Sergei Pavlovitch Diaghilev Walter Feodorovich Nouvel (1871–1949) was a Russian émigré art-lover and writer. He co-wrote with Arnold Haskell a biography of Sergei Pavlovitch...

, Stravinsky included his well-known statement that "music is, by its very nature, essentially powerless to express anything at all." With Alexis Roland-Manuel
Alexis Roland-Manuel
Alexis Roland-Manuel was a French composer and critic, though he is remembered mainly for his work in the latter area.-Biography:...

 and Pierre Souvtchinsky
Pyotr Suvchinsky
Pyotr Petrovich Suvchinsky, later known as Pierre Souvtchinsky , was a Ukrainian artistic patron and writer on music. The heir to a sugar fortune, he took piano lessons from Felix Blumenthal and initially hoped to become an operatic tenor. He was the patron and co-publisher of the Saint Petersburg...

 he wrote his 1939–40 Harvard University
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

 Charles Eliot Norton Lectures
Charles Eliot Norton Lectures
The Charles Eliot Norton Professorship of Poetry at Harvard University was established in 1925 as an annual lectureship in "poetry in the broadest sense" and named for the university's former professor of fine arts. Distinguished creative figures and scholars in the arts, including painting,...

, which were delivered in French and later collected under the title in 1942 (translated in 1947 as Poetics of Music). Several interviews in which the composer spoke to Robert Craft
Robert Craft
Robert Lawson Craft is an American conductor and writer. He is best known for his intimate working friendship with Igor Stravinsky, a relationship which resulted in a number of recordings and books.-Life:...

 were published as Conversations with Igor Stravinsky. They collaborated on five further volumes over the following decade.

Russia

Stravinsky was born in Oranienbaum
Lomonosov, Russia
Lomonosov is a municipal town in Petrodvortsovy District of the federal city of St. Petersburg, Russia, situated on the southern coast of the Gulf of Finland, west of St. Petersburg proper. Population:...

 (renamed Lomonosov in 1948), Russia
Russian Empire
The Russian Empire was a state that existed from 1721 until the Russian Revolution of 1917. It was the successor to the Tsardom of Russia and the predecessor of the Soviet Union...

 and brought up in Saint Petersburg
Saint Petersburg
Saint Petersburg is a city and a federal subject of Russia located on the Neva River at the head of the Gulf of Finland on the Baltic Sea...

. His childhood, he recalled in his autobiography, was troubled: "I never came across anyone who had any real affection for me." His parents were Anna Kholodovsky and Fyodor Stravinsky
Fyodor Stravinsky
Fyodor Ignatievich Stravinsky ) was a Russian bass opera singer and actor. He was the father of Igor Stravinsky and the grandfather of Soulima Stravinsky....

, a bass singer
Bass (voice type)
A bass is a type of male singing voice and possesses the lowest vocal range of all voice types. According to The New Grove Dictionary of Opera, a bass is typically classified as having a range extending from around the second E below middle C to the E above middle C...

 at the Mariinsky Theatre
Mariinsky Theatre
The Mariinsky Theatre is a historic theatre of opera and ballet in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Opened in 1860, it became the preeminent music theatre of late 19th century Russia, where many of the stage masterpieces of Tchaikovsky, Mussorgsky, and Rimsky-Korsakov received their premieres. The...

 in Saint Petersburg, and the young Stravinsky began piano lessons and later studied music theory and attempted some composition. In 1890, Stravinsky saw a performance of Tchaikovsky
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (Russian: Пётр Ильи́ч Чайко́вский ; often "Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky" in English. His names are also transliterated "Piotr" or "Petr"; "Ilitsch", "Il'ich" or "Illyich"; and "Tschaikowski", "Tschaikowsky", "Chajkovskij"...

's ballet The Sleeping Beauty at the Mariinsky Theater; the performance, his first exposure to an orchestra, mesmerized him. At fourteen, he had mastered Mendelssohn
Felix Mendelssohn
Jakob Ludwig Felix Mendelssohn Barthóldy , use the form 'Mendelssohn' and not 'Mendelssohn Bartholdy'. The Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians gives ' Felix Mendelssohn' as the entry, with 'Mendelssohn' used in the body text...

's Piano Concerto in G minor
Piano Concerto No. 1 (Mendelssohn)
Mendelssohn's Piano Concerto No. 1 in G minor was written in 1830–1, around the same time as his fourth symphony , and premiered in Munich in October 1831. He had already written a piano concerto in A minor with string accompaniment and two concertos with two pianos...

, and the next year, he finished a piano reduction of one of Glazunov's
Alexander Glazunov
Alexander Konstantinovich Glazunov was a Russian composer of the late Russian Romantic period, music teacher and conductor...

 string quartets.

Despite his enthusiasm for music, his parents expected him to become a lawyer. Stravinsky enrolled to study law at the University of Saint Petersburg in 1901, but was ill-suited for it, attending fewer than 50 class sessions in four years. By the death of his father in 1902, he had already begun spending more time on his musical studies. Because of the closure of the university in the spring of 1905, in the aftermath of Bloody Sunday
Bloody Sunday (1905)
Bloody Sunday was a massacre on in St. Petersburg, Russia, where unarmed, peaceful demonstrators marching to present a petition to Tsar Nicholas II were gunned down by the Imperial Guard while approaching the city center and the Winter Palace from several gathering points. The shooting did not...

, Stravinsky was prevented from taking his law finals, and received only a half-course diploma, in April 1906. Thereafter, he concentrated on music. On the advice of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Nikolai Andreyevich Rimsky-Korsakov was a Russian composer, and a member of the group of composers known as The Five.The Five, also known as The Mighty Handful or The Mighty Coterie, refers to a circle of composers who met in Saint Petersburg, Russia, in the years 1856–1870: Mily Balakirev , César...

, probably the leading Russian composer of the time, he decided not to enter the Saint Petersburg Conservatoire, in large part because of his age; instead, in 1905, he began to take twice-weekly private lessons from Rimsky-Korsakov, who became like a second father to him. These lessons continued until 1908.

In 1905 he was betrothed to his cousin Katerina Nossenko, whom he had known since early childhood. In spite of the Orthodox Church's opposition to marriage between first cousins, they managed to marry on 23 January 1906. Their first two children, Fyodor and Ludmilla, were born in 1907 and 1908 respectively.

In 1909, his (Fireworks), was performed in Saint Petersburg, where it was heard by Sergei Diaghilev
Sergei Diaghilev
Sergei Pavlovich Diaghilev , usually referred to outside of Russia as Serge, was a Russian art critic, patron, ballet impresario and founder of the Ballets Russes, from which many famous dancers and choreographers would arise.-Early life and career:...

, the director of the Ballets Russes
Ballets Russes
The Ballets Russes was an itinerant ballet company from Russia which performed between 1909 and 1929 in many countries. Directed by Sergei Diaghilev, it is regarded as the greatest ballet company of the 20th century. Many of its dancers originated from the Imperial Ballet of Saint Petersburg...

 in Paris. Diaghilev was sufficiently impressed to commission Stravinsky to carry out some orchestrations, and then to compose a full-length ballet score, The Firebird
The Firebird
The Firebird is a 1910 ballet created by the composer Igor Stravinsky and choreographer Michel Fokine. The ballet is based on Russian folk tales of the magical glowing bird of the same name that is both a blessing and a curse to its captor....

.

Switzerland

Stravinsky travelled to Paris in 1910 to attend the premiere of The Firebird. His family soon joined him, and decided to remain in the West for a time. He moved to Switzerland, where he lived until 1920 in Clarens
Clarens, Switzerland
Clarens is a small village in the municipality of Montreux, in the canton of Vaud, in Switzerland.Whilst in Clarens, the Russian composer Igor Stravinsky wrote his ballets The Rite of Spring and Pulcinella and in March 1878, Tchaikovsky wrote his Violin Concerto.Paul Kruger, hero of South African...

 and Lausanne
Lausanne
Lausanne is a city in Romandy, the French-speaking part of Switzerland, and is the capital of the canton of Vaud. The seat of the district of Lausanne, the city is situated on the shores of Lake Geneva . It faces the French town of Évian-les-Bains, with the Jura mountains to its north-west...

. During this time he composed three further works for the Ballets Russes—Petrushka (1911), written in Lausanne, and The Rite of Spring
The Rite of Spring
The Rite of Spring, original French title Le sacre du printemps , is a ballet with music by Igor Stravinsky; choreography by Vaslav Nijinsky; and concept, set design and costumes by Nicholas Roerich...

(1913) and Pulcinella
Pulcinella (ballet)
Pulcinella is a ballet by Igor Stravinsky based on an 18th-century play — Pulcinella is a character originating from Commedia dell'arte. The ballet premiered at the Paris Opera on 15 May 1920 under the baton of Ernest Ansermet. The dancer Léonide Massine created both the libretto and choreography,...

, both written in Clarens.

While the Stravinskys were in Switzerland, their second son, Soulima
Soulima Stravinsky
Sviatoslav Soulima Stravinsky was a Swiss-American pianist, composer and musicologist of Russian and Ukrainian descent...

 (who later became a minor composer), was born in 1910; and their second daughter, Maria Milena, was born in 1913. During this last pregnancy, Katerina was found to have tuberculosis
Tuberculosis
Tuberculosis, MTB, or TB is a common, and in many cases lethal, infectious disease caused by various strains of mycobacteria, usually Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Tuberculosis usually attacks the lungs but can also affect other parts of the body...

, and she was placed in a Swiss sanatorium located in Leysin
Leysin
Leysin is a municipality of the canton of Vaud in Switzerland, located in the district of Aigle.-History:Leysin is first mentioned around 1231-32 as Leissins. In 1352 it was mentioned as Leisins.-Geography:...

 for her confinement. After a brief return to Russia in July 1914 to collect research materials for Les noces
Les Noces
Les noces by Igor Stravinsky, is a dance cantata, or ballet with vocalists.-History:The ballet was premiered on June 13, 1923 at the Théâtre de la Gaîté, by the Ballets Russes with choreography by Bronislava Nijinska...

, Stravinsky left his homeland and returned to Switzerland just before the outbreak of World War I brought about the closure of the borders. He was not to return to Russia for nearly fifty years. Stravinsky was one of the few Eastern Orthodox or Russian Orthodox community representatives living in Switzerland at that time and is still remembered as such in Switzerland to date.

The Stravinskys had significant financial difficulties at this period. The fact that Russia (and, subsequently, the USSR) did not adhere to the Berne convention created problems for him in collecting royalties for performances of his works. Stravinsky himself also blamed Diaghilev for, in his view, failing at this time to live up to the terms of a contract they had signed. Stravinsky approached the Swiss philanthropist Werner Reinhart
Werner Reinhart
Werner Reinhart was a Swiss industrialist, philanthropist, amateur clarinetist, and patron of composers and writers, particularly Igor Stravinsky and Rainer Maria Rilke...

 for financial assistance when he was writing Histoire du soldat
Histoire du soldat
Histoire du soldat , composed by Igor Stravinsky, is a 1918 theatrical work "to be read, played, and danced" . The libretto, which is based on a Russian folk tale, was written in French by the Swiss universalist writer C.F. Ramuz...

(The Soldier's Tale). The first performance was conducted by Ernest Ansermet
Ernest Ansermet
Ernest Alexandre Ansermet was a Swiss conductor.- Biography :Ansermet was born in Vevey, Switzerland. Although he was a contemporary of Wilhelm Furtwängler and Otto Klemperer, Ansermet represents in most ways a very different tradition and approach from those two musicians. Originally he was a...

 on 28 September 1918, at the Theatre Municipal de Lausanne
Lausanne
Lausanne is a city in Romandy, the French-speaking part of Switzerland, and is the capital of the canton of Vaud. The seat of the district of Lausanne, the city is situated on the shores of Lake Geneva . It faces the French town of Évian-les-Bains, with the Jura mountains to its north-west...

. Werner Reinhart sponsored and to a large degree underwrote this performance. In gratitude, Stravinsky dedicated the work to Reinhart, |url=http://www.ragtime-ensemble.com/english/Presentation.php |title=Ragtime Ensemble presents The Soldier's Tale |publisher=Ragtime-ensemble.com |accessdate=9 March 2010}} and even gave him the original manuscript.
Reinhart continued his support of Stravinsky's work in 1919 by funding a series of concerts of his recent chamber music. These included a suite of five numbers from The Soldier's Tale, arranged for clarinet, violin, and piano, which was a nod to Reinhart, who was an excellent amateur clarinettist. The suite was first performed on 8 November 1919, in Lausanne, long before the better-known suite for the seven original performers became widely known. In gratitude for Reinhart's ongoing support, Stravinsky dedicated his Three Pieces for Clarinet (composed October–November 1918) to Reinhart. Reinhart later founded a music library of Stravinskiana at his home in Winterthur
Winterthur
Winterthur is a city in the canton of Zurich in northern Switzerland. It has the country's sixth largest population with an estimate of more than 100,000 people. In the local dialect and by its inhabitants, it is usually abbreviated to Winti...

.

France

Stravinsky moved to France in 1920, where he formed a business and musical relationship with the French piano manufacturer Pleyel. Pleyel essentially acted as his agent in collecting mechanical royalties for his works, and in return provided him with a monthly income and a studio space in which to work and to entertain friends and business acquaintances.

Stravinsky arranged (and to some extent re-composed) many of his early works for the Pleyela, Pleyel's brand of player piano
Player piano
A player piano is a self-playing piano, containing a pneumatic or electro-mechanical mechanism that operates the piano action via pre-programmed music perforated paper, or in rare instances, metallic rolls. The rise of the player piano grew with the rise of the mass-produced piano for the home in...

. Stravinsky did so in a way that made full use of the piano's 88 notes, without regard for the number or span of human fingers and hands. These were not recorded rolls, but were instead marked up from a combination of manuscript fragments and handwritten notes by the French musician, Jacques Larmanjat (musical director of Pleyel's roll department). While many of these works are now part of the standard repertoire, at the time many orchestras found his music beyond their capabilities and unfathomable. Major compositions issued on Pleyela piano roll
Piano roll
A piano roll is a music storage medium used to operate a player piano, piano player or reproducing piano. A piano roll is a continuous roll of paper with perforations punched into it. The peforations represent note control data...

s include The Rite of Spring, Petrushka, Firebird, and Song of the Nightingale. During the 1920s he recorded Duo-Art rolls for the Aeolian Company
Aeolian Company
The Æolian Company was a manufacturer of player organs and pianos.- History :It was founded by New York City piano maker William B. Tremaine as the Æolian Organ & Music Co. to make automatic organs, and, after 1895, as the Æolian Co. automatic pianos as well. The Æolian Company was a...

 in both London and New York, not all of which survive.

After a short stay near Paris, Stravinsky moved with his family to the south of France. He returned to Paris in 1934, to live at the rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré
Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré
The rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré is a street in Paris, France. Although relatively narrow and nondescript , it is cited as being one of the most fashionable streets in the world, thanks to the presence of virtually every major global fashion house...

. Stravinsky later remembered this as his last and unhappiest European address; his wife's tuberculosis infected his eldest daughter Ludmila, and Stravinsky himself. Ludmila died in 1938, Katerina in the following year. Stravinsky spent five months in hospital, during which time his mother also died.

Although his marriage to Katerina endured for 33 years, Vera de Bosset
Vera de Bosset
Vera de Bosset Stravinsky was a Russian born American dancer and artist. She is better known as the mistress and, ultimately, second wife of the Russian composer Igor Stravinsky who married her in 1940.-Life:...

 (1888–1982), the true love of his life and later his partner until his death, became his second wife. When Stravinsky met Vera in Paris in February 1921, she was married to the painter and stage designer Serge Sudeikin
Serge Sudeikin
Sergey Yurievich Sudeikin, also known as Serge Soudeikine , was a Russian artist and set-designer associated with the Ballets Russes and the Metropolitan Opera...

; however, they soon began an affair which led to her leaving her husband. From then until Katerina's death in 1939, Stravinsky led a double life, spending some of his time with his first family and the rest with Vera. Katerina soon learned of the relationship and accepted it as inevitable and permanent. He became a French citizen in 1934.

During his later years in Paris, Stravinsky had developed professional relationships with key people in the United States; he was already working on the Symphony in C
Symphony in C (Stravinsky)
The Symphony in C is a work by Russian expatriate composer Igor Stravinsky.The Symphony was written between 1938 and 1940 on a commission from American philanthropist Mrs. Robert Woods Bliss. It was a turbulent period of the composer's life, marked by illness and deaths in his immediate family...

 for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Chicago Symphony Orchestra
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra is an American orchestra based in Chicago, Illinois. It is one of the five American orchestras commonly referred to as the "Big Five". Founded in 1891, the Symphony makes its home at Orchestra Hall in Chicago and plays a summer season at the Ravinia Festival...

, and had agreed to lecture at Harvard during the academic year of 1939–40. When World War II broke out in September 1939, Stravinsky moved to the United States. Vera followed him early in the next year and they were married in Bedford, Massachusetts
Bedford, Massachusetts
Bedford is a town in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States. It is within the Greater Boston area, north-west of the city of Boston. The population of Bedford was 13,320 at the 2010 census.- History :...

, on 9 March 1940.

America

Stravinsky settled down in the Los Angeles area (1260 North Wetherly Drive, West Hollywood) where, in the end, he spent more time as a resident than any other city during his lifetime. He became a naturalized US citizen
United States nationality law
Article I, section 8, clause 4 of the United States Constitution expressly gives the United States Congress the power to establish a uniform rule of naturalization. The Immigration and Naturalization Act sets forth the legal requirements for the acquisition of, and divestiture from, citizenship of...

 in 1945. Stravinsky had adapted to life in France, but moving to America at the age of 58 was a very different prospect. For a time, he preserved a ring of emigré
Émigré
Émigré is a French term that literally refers to a person who has "migrated out", but often carries a connotation of politico-social self-exile....

 Russian friends and contacts, but eventually found that this did not sustain his intellectual and professional life. He was drawn to the growing cultural life of Los Angeles, especially during World War II, when so many writers, musicians, composers, and conductors settled in the area; these included Otto Klemperer
Otto Klemperer
Otto Klemperer was a German conductor and composer. He is widely regarded as one of the leading conductors of the 20th century.-Biography:Otto Klemperer was born in Breslau, Silesia Province, then in Germany...

, Thomas Mann
Thomas Mann
Thomas Mann was a German novelist, short story writer, social critic, philanthropist, essayist, and 1929 Nobel Prize laureate, known for his series of highly symbolic and ironic epic novels and novellas, noted for their insight into the psychology of the artist and the intellectual...

, Franz Werfel
Franz Werfel
Franz Werfel was an Austrian-Bohemian novelist, playwright, and poet.- Biography :Born in Prague , Werfel was the first of three children of a wealthy manufacturer of gloves and leather goods. His mother, Albine Kussi, was the daughter of a mill owner...

, George Balanchine
George Balanchine
George Balanchine , born Giorgi Balanchivadze in Saint Petersburg, Russia, to a Georgian father and a Russian mother, was one of the 20th century's most famous choreographers, a developer of ballet in the United States, co-founder and balletmaster of New York City Ballet...

 and Arthur Rubinstein
Arthur Rubinstein
Arthur Rubinstein KBE was a Polish-American pianist. He received international acclaim for his performances of the music of a variety of composers...

. He lived fairly near to Arnold Schoenberg
Arnold Schoenberg
Arnold Schoenberg was an Austrian composer, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School...

, though he did not have a close relationship with him. Bernard Holland
Bernard Holland
Bernard Holland is an internationally recognized American music critic. He served on the staff of The New York Times from 1981 until 2008 and held the post of chief music critic from 1995, contributing 4,575 articles to the newspaper....

 notes that he was especially fond of British writers who often visited him in Beverly Hills, "like W. H. Auden
W. H. Auden
Wystan Hugh Auden , who published as W. H. Auden, was an Anglo-American poet,The first definition of "Anglo-American" in the OED is: "Of, belonging to, or involving both England and America." See also the definition "English in origin or birth, American by settlement or citizenship" in See also...

, Christopher Isherwood
Christopher Isherwood
Christopher William Bradshaw Isherwood was an English-American novelist.-Early life and work:Born at Wyberslegh Hall, High Lane, Cheshire in North West England, Isherwood spent his childhood in various towns where his father, a Lieutenant-Colonel in the British Army, was stationed...

, Dylan Thomas
Dylan Thomas
Dylan Marlais Thomas was a Welsh poet and writer, Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 11 January 2008. who wrote exclusively in English. In addition to poetry, he wrote short stories and scripts for film and radio, which he often performed himself...

 (who shared the composer's taste for hard spirits) and, especially, Aldous Huxley
Aldous Huxley
Aldous Leonard Huxley was an English writer and one of the most prominent members of the famous Huxley family. Best known for his novels including Brave New World and a wide-ranging output of essays, Huxley also edited the magazine Oxford Poetry, and published short stories, poetry, travel...

, with whom Stravinsky spoke in French." He settled into life in Los Angeles and sometimes conducted concerts with the Los Angeles Philharmonic
Los Angeles Philharmonic
The Los Angeles Philharmonic is an American orchestra based in Los Angeles, California, United States. It has a regular season of concerts from October through June at the Walt Disney Concert Hall, and a summer season at the Hollywood Bowl from July through September...

, at the famous Hollywood Bowl
Hollywood Bowl
The Hollywood Bowl is a modern amphitheater in the Hollywood area of Los Angeles, California, United States that is used primarily for music performances...

, and other orchestras throughout the U.S. His plans to write an opera with W. H. Auden coincided with his meeting the conductor and musicologist Robert Craft
Robert Craft
Robert Lawson Craft is an American conductor and writer. He is best known for his intimate working friendship with Igor Stravinsky, a relationship which resulted in a number of recordings and books.-Life:...

. Craft lived with Stravinsky until the composer's death, acting as interpreter, chronicler, assistant conductor, and factotum for countless musical and social tasks.

Stravinsky's unconventional major seventh chord in his arrangement of "The Star-Spangled Banner
The Star-Spangled Banner
"The Star-Spangled Banner" is the national anthem of the United States of America. The lyrics come from "Defence of Fort McHenry", a poem written in 1814 by the 35-year-old lawyer and amateur poet, Francis Scott Key, after witnessing the bombardment of Fort McHenry by the British Royal Navy ships...

" led to an incident with the Boston police on 15 January 1944, but he was only warned that Massachusetts could impose a $100 fine upon any "rearrangement of the national anthem in whole or in part." The incident soon established itself as a myth in which Stravinsky was supposedly arrested for playing the music.

Stravinsky was on the lot of Paramount Pictures
Paramount Pictures
Paramount Pictures Corporation is an American film production and distribution company, located at 5555 Melrose Avenue in Hollywood. Founded in 1912 and currently owned by media conglomerate Viacom, it is America's oldest existing film studio; it is also the last major film studio still...

 when the musical score to the 1956 film The Court Jester
The Court Jester
The Court Jester is a 1956 musical-comedy film starring Danny Kaye, Glynis Johns, Basil Rathbone, and Angela Lansbury. The movie was co-written, co-directed, and co-produced by Melvin Frank and Norman Panama...

(starring Danny Kaye
Danny Kaye
Danny Kaye was a celebrated American actor, singer, dancer, and comedian...

) was being recorded. The red "recording in progress" light was illuminated to ensure no interruptions, Vic Schoen
Vic Schoen
Victor "Vic" Schoen was an American bandleader, arranger, and composer whose career spanned from the 1930s until his death in 2000...

, the composer of the score, started to conduct a cue but noticed that the entire orchestra had turned to look at Stravinsky, who had just walked into the studio. Schoen
Vic Schoen
Victor "Vic" Schoen was an American bandleader, arranger, and composer whose career spanned from the 1930s until his death in 2000...

 said, "The entire room was astonished to see this short little man with a big chest walk in and listen to our session. I later talked with him after we were done recording. We went and got a cup of coffee together. After listening to my music Stravinsky had told me 'You have broken all the rules'. At the time I didn't understand his comment because I had been self-taught. It took me years to figure out what he had meant."

In 1959, Stravinsky was awarded the Sonning Award, Denmark's highest musical honour. In 1962, he accepted an invitation to return to Leningrad
Leningrad
Leningrad is the former name of Saint Petersburg, Russia.Leningrad may also refer to:- Places :* Leningrad Oblast, a federal subject of Russia, around Saint Petersburg* Leningrad, Tajikistan, capital of Muminobod district in Khatlon Province...

 (today known as Saint Petersburg) for a series of concerts. He also visited Moscow. Stravinsky met several leading Soviet composers, including Dmitri Shostakovich
Dmitri Shostakovich
Dmitri Dmitriyevich Shostakovich was a Soviet Russian composer and one of the most celebrated composers of the 20th century....

 and Aram Khachaturian
Aram Khachaturian
Aram Ilyich Khachaturian was a prominent Soviet composer. Khachaturian's works were often influenced by classical Russian music and Armenian folk music...

.

In 1969, he moved to New York where he lived his last years at the Essex House
Jumeirah Essex House
The Jumeirah Essex House, commonly known as the Essex House, is a luxury hotel located on 160 Central Park South in Manhattan. Built in 1931 as the Park Tower Hotel, it is situated across the street from the southern border of Central Park and is convenient to both the stylish shops on Fifth Avenue...

. Two years later, he died at the age of 88 in New York City and was buried in Venice
Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

 on the cemetery island of San Michele
Isola di San Michele
San Michele is an island in the Venetian Lagoon, northern Italy.Originally a prison island, Napoleon's occupying forces decreed that Venetians could not bury their deceased on any of the main Venetians islands, but only on San Michele...

. His grave is close to the tomb of his long-time collaborator Sergei Diaghilev
Sergei Diaghilev
Sergei Pavlovich Diaghilev , usually referred to outside of Russia as Serge, was a Russian art critic, patron, ballet impresario and founder of the Ballets Russes, from which many famous dancers and choreographers would arise.-Early life and career:...

. Stravinsky's professional life had encompassed most of the 20th century, including many of its modern classical music styles, and he influenced composers both during and after his lifetime. He has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
Hollywood Walk of Fame
The Hollywood Walk of Fame consists of more than 2,400 five-pointed terrazzo and brass stars embedded in the sidewalks along fifteen blocks of Hollywood Boulevard and three blocks of Vine Street in Hollywood, California...

 at 6340 Hollywood Boulevard and posthumously received the Grammy Award
Grammy Award
A Grammy Award — or Grammy — is an accolade by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States to recognize outstanding achievement in the music industry...

 for Lifetime Achievement
Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award
The Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award is awarded by the Recording Academy to "performers who, during their lifetimes, have made creative contributions of outstanding artistic significance to the field of recording."...

 in 1987. Stravinsky was inducted into the National Museum of Dance C.V. Whitney Hall of Fame
National Museum of Dance and Hall of Fame
The National Museum of Dance and Hall of Fame, in the Saratoga Spa State Park, Saratoga, New York, was established in 1986 and is the only museum in the nation dedicated entirely to dance. It contains photographs, videos, artifacts, costumes and biographies. The museum is located in the former and...

 in 2004.

Personality

Stravinsky displayed an inexhaustible desire to explore and learn about art, literature, and life. This desire manifested itself in several of his Paris collaborations. Not only was he the principal composer for Sergei Diaghilev
Sergei Diaghilev
Sergei Pavlovich Diaghilev , usually referred to outside of Russia as Serge, was a Russian art critic, patron, ballet impresario and founder of the Ballets Russes, from which many famous dancers and choreographers would arise.-Early life and career:...

's Ballets Russes, but he also collaborated with Pablo Picasso
Pablo Picasso
Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso known as Pablo Ruiz Picasso was a Spanish expatriate painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer, one of the greatest and most influential artists of the...

 (Pulcinella
Pulcinella (ballet)
Pulcinella is a ballet by Igor Stravinsky based on an 18th-century play — Pulcinella is a character originating from Commedia dell'arte. The ballet premiered at the Paris Opera on 15 May 1920 under the baton of Ernest Ansermet. The dancer Léonide Massine created both the libretto and choreography,...

, 1920), Jean Cocteau
Jean Cocteau
Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, playwright, artist and filmmaker. His circle of associates, friends and lovers included Kenneth Anger, Pablo Picasso, Jean Hugo, Jean Marais, Henri Bernstein, Marlene Dietrich, Coco Chanel, Erik Satie, María...

  and George Balanchine
George Balanchine
George Balanchine , born Giorgi Balanchivadze in Saint Petersburg, Russia, to a Georgian father and a Russian mother, was one of the 20th century's most famous choreographers, a developer of ballet in the United States, co-founder and balletmaster of New York City Ballet...

 . His taste in literature was wide, and reflected his constant desire for new discoveries. The texts and literary sources for his work began with a period of interest in Russian folklore
Folklore
Folklore consists of legends, music, oral history, proverbs, jokes, popular beliefs, fairy tales and customs that are the traditions of a culture, subculture, or group. It is also the set of practices through which those expressive genres are shared. The study of folklore is sometimes called...

, progressed to classical authors and the Latin liturgy
Roman Rite
The Roman Rite is the liturgical rite used in the Diocese of Rome in the Catholic Church. It is by far the most widespread of the Latin liturgical rites used within the Western or Latin autonomous particular Church, the particular Church that itself is also called the Latin Rite, and that is one of...

, and moved on to contemporary France (André Gide
André Gide
André Paul Guillaume Gide was a French author and winner of the Nobel Prize in literature in 1947. Gide's career ranged from its beginnings in the symbolist movement, to the advent of anticolonialism between the two World Wars.Known for his fiction as well as his autobiographical works, Gide...

, in Persephone) and eventually English literature, including Auden, T. S. Eliot
T. S. Eliot
Thomas Stearns "T. S." Eliot OM was a playwright, literary critic, and arguably the most important English-language poet of the 20th century. Although he was born an American he moved to the United Kingdom in 1914 and was naturalised as a British subject in 1927 at age 39.The poem that made his...

 and medieval English verse.

According to Craft, Stravinsky remained a confirmed Monarchist throughout his life and loathed the Bolshevik
Bolshevik
The Bolsheviks, originally also Bolshevists , derived from bol'shinstvo, "majority") were a faction of the Marxist Russian Social Democratic Labour Party which split apart from the Menshevik faction at the Second Party Congress in 1903....

s from the very beginning. In 1930, he remarked "I don't believe that anyone venerates Mussolini
Benito Mussolini
Benito Amilcare Andrea Mussolini was an Italian politician who led the National Fascist Party and is credited with being one of the key figures in the creation of Fascism....

 more than I... I know many exalted personages, and my artist's mind does not shrink from political and social issues. Well, after having seen so many events and so many more or less representative men, I have an overpowering urge to render homage to your Duce. He is the saviour of Italy and – let us hope – Europe." Later, after a private audience with Mussolini, he added: "Unless my ears deceive me, the voice of Rome is the voice of Il Duce. I told him that I felt like a fascist myself.... In spite of being extremely busy, Mussolini did me the great honour of conversing with me for three-quarters of an hour. We talked about music, art and politics." When the Nazis placed Stravinsky's works on the list of "Entartete Musik", he lodged a formal appeal to establish his Russian genealogy and declared "I loathe all communism, Marxism, the execrable Soviet monster, and also all liberalism, democratism, atheism, etc." Towards the end of his life, at Craft's behest, he made a return visit to his native country in the 1960s, and composed a cantata in Hebrew and traveled to Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 for its performance.

Patronage was never far away. In the early 1920s, Leopold Stokowski
Leopold Stokowski
Leopold Anthony Stokowski was a British-born, naturalised American orchestral conductor, well known for his free-hand performing style that spurned the traditional baton and for obtaining a characteristically sumptuous sound from many of the great orchestras he conducted.In America, Stokowski...

 gave Stravinsky regular support through a pseudonymous "benefactor". The composer was also able to attract commissions: most of his work from The Firebird onwards was written for specific occasions and was paid for generously.

Stravinsky proved adept at playing the part of "man of the world", acquiring a keen instinct for business matters and appearing relaxed and comfortable in many of the world's major cities. Paris, Venice, Berlin, London, Amsterdam
Amsterdam
Amsterdam is the largest city and the capital of the Netherlands. The current position of Amsterdam as capital city of the Kingdom of the Netherlands is governed by the constitution of August 24, 1815 and its successors. Amsterdam has a population of 783,364 within city limits, an urban population...

 and New York City all hosted successful appearances as pianist and conductor. Most people who knew him through dealings connected with performances spoke of him as polite, courteous and helpful.

Stravinsky was reputed to have been a philanderer, rumored to have had affairs with high-profile partners such as Coco Chanel
Coco Chanel
Gabrielle Bonheur "Coco" Chanel was a pioneering French fashion designer whose modernist thought, menswear-inspired fashions, and pursuit of expensive simplicity made her an important figure in 20th-century fashion. She was the founder of one of the most famous fashion brands, Chanel...

. Stravinsky never referred to such an affair himself, but Chanel spoke about it at length to her biographer Paul Morand
Paul Morand
Paul Morand was a French diplomat, novelist, playwright and poet, considered an early Modernist.He was a graduate of the Paris Institute of Political Studies...

 in 1946, and the conversation was published 30 years later. The accuracy of Chanel's claims have been disputed by Stravinsky's widow Vera and his amanuensis Robert Craft, beginning two years after the publication of Morand's biography, even while conceding the existence of the affair itself. The Chanel fashion house states that the affair between Coco and Igor should be viewed as fiction as there was no proof. A fictionalization of such an affair forms the basis of the 2002 novel Coco and Igor, later made into a movie
Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky
Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky is a 2009 French film directed by Jan Kounen. It was chosen as the Closing Film of the 2009 Cannes Film Festival, and was shown on 24 May 2009....

 in 2009. Despite these supposed liaisons, Stravinsky was a family man who devoted considerable amounts of his time and money to his sons and daughters.

Stravinsky was a devout member of the Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
The Russian Orthodox Church or, alternatively, the Moscow Patriarchate The ROC is often said to be the largest of the Eastern Orthodox churches in the world; including all the autocephalous churches under its umbrella, its adherents number over 150 million worldwide—about half of the 300 million...

 during most of his life, remarking at one time, "Music praises God. Music is well or better able to praise him than the building of the church and all its decoration; it is the Church's greatest ornament."

Faith

Although Stravinsky was not outspoken about his faith, he was a deeply religious man throughout some periods of his life. As a child, he was brought up by his parents in the Russian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Church
The Russian Orthodox Church or, alternatively, the Moscow Patriarchate The ROC is often said to be the largest of the Eastern Orthodox churches in the world; including all the autocephalous churches under its umbrella, its adherents number over 150 million worldwide—about half of the 300 million...

. Baptized at birth, he later rebelled against the Church and abandoned it by the time he was fourteen or fifteen. Throughout the rise of his career, he was estranged from Christianity and was not until his early forties that he experienced a spiritual crisis. After befriending a Russian priest, Father Nicolas, after his move to Nice
Nice
Nice is the fifth most populous city in France, after Paris, Marseille, Lyon and Toulouse, with a population of 348,721 within its administrative limits on a land area of . The urban area of Nice extends beyond the administrative city limits with a population of more than 955,000 on an area of...

 in 1924, he reconnected with his faith and rejoined the Russian Orthodox Church. For the majority of his remaining life, he remained a committed Christian. Robert Craft
Robert Craft
Robert Lawson Craft is an American conductor and writer. He is best known for his intimate working friendship with Igor Stravinsky, a relationship which resulted in a number of recordings and books.-Life:...

 noted that Stravinsky prayed daily, prayed before and after composing, and prayed when facing difficulty. Towards the end of his life, Stravinsky no longer attended services although he remained Russian Orthodox.

Theology

In Stravinsky's own words in his late seventies:

I cannot now evaluate the events that, at the end of those thirty years, made me discover the necessity of religious belief. I was not reasoned into my disposition. Though I admire the structured thought of theology (Anselm's proof in the Fides Quaerens Intellectum, for instance) it is to religion no more than counterpoint exercises are to music. I do not believe in bridges of reason or, indeed, in any form of extrapolation in religious matters. ... I can say, however, that for some years before my actual "conversion," a mood of acceptance had been cultivated in me by a reading of the Gospels and by other religious literature. ...

Music

Stravinsky's career may be divided roughly into three stylistic periods.

Russian Period (circa 1908–1919)

The first period (excluding some early minor works) began with Feu d'artifice
Feu d'artifice
Feu d'artifice, Op. 4 is an early composition by Igor Stravinsky, written in 1908. The work is an orchestral fantasy, and usually takes about five minutes to perform....

(Fireworks) and achieved prominence with the three ballets
Ballet (music)
Ballet as a music form progressed from simply a complement to dance, to a concrete compositional form that often had as much value as the dance that went along with it. The dance form, originating in France during the 17th century, began as a theatrical dance. It was not until the 19th century that...

 composed for Diaghilev. These three works have several characteristics in common: they are scored for an extremely large orchestra; they use Russian folk
Ethnic Russian music
Ethnic Russian music specifically deals with the folk music traditions of the ethnic Russian people. It does not include the various forms of art music, which in Russia often contains folk melodies and folk elements or music of aother ethnic groups living in Russia.-History:The roots of Russian...

 themes and motifs; and they are influenced by Rimsky-Korsakov's imaginative scoring and instrumentation. They also exhibit considerable stylistic development: from The Firebird
The Firebird
The Firebird is a 1910 ballet created by the composer Igor Stravinsky and choreographer Michel Fokine. The ballet is based on Russian folk tales of the magical glowing bird of the same name that is both a blessing and a curse to its captor....

, which emphasizes certain tendencies in Rimsky-Korsakov and features pandiatonicism conspicuously in the third movement, to the use of polytonality
Polytonality
The musical use of more than one key simultaneously is polytonality . Bitonality is the use of only two different keys at the same time...

 in Petrushka, and the intentionally brutal polyrhythm
Polyrhythm
Polyrhythm is the simultaneous sounding of two or more independent rhythms.Polyrhythm in general is a nonspecific term for the simultaneous occurrence of two or more conflicting rhythms, of which cross-rhythm is a specific and definable subset.—Novotney Polyrhythms can be distinguished from...

s and dissonances
Consonance and dissonance
In music, a consonance is a harmony, chord, or interval considered stable, as opposed to a dissonance , which is considered to be unstable...

 of The Rite of Spring
The Rite of Spring
The Rite of Spring, original French title Le sacre du printemps , is a ballet with music by Igor Stravinsky; choreography by Vaslav Nijinsky; and concept, set design and costumes by Nicholas Roerich...

.

The first of the ballets, The Firebird, is noted for its imaginative orchestration
Orchestration
Orchestration is the study or practice of writing music for an orchestra or of adapting for orchestra music composed for another medium...

, evident at the outset from the introduction in 12/8 meter, which exploits the low register of the double bass. Petrushka, the first of Stravinsky's ballets to draw on folk mythology
Mythology
The term mythology can refer either to the study of myths, or to a body or collection of myths. As examples, comparative mythology is the study of connections between myths from different cultures, whereas Greek mythology is the body of myths from ancient Greece...

, is also distinctively scored. In the third ballet, The Rite of Spring, the composer attempted to depict musically the brutality of pagan Russia, which inspired the violent motifs that recur throughout the work.

If Stravinsky's stated intention was "to send them all to hell", then he may have rated the 1913 premiere of The Rite of Spring as a success: it is among the most famous classical music riot
Classical music riot
A classical music riot is violent, disorderly behavior that occurs upon the premiere of a controversial piece of classical music.Examples include:* 1830 - Daniel Auber - La Muette de Portici...

s, and Stravinsky referred to it frequently as a "scandale" in his autobiography. There were reports of fistfights among the audience, and the need for a police presence during the second act. The real extent of the tumult, however, is open to debate, and these reports may be apocryphal.

Other pieces from this period include: (The Nightingale); Renard (1916); (1918); and (The Wedding) (1923).

Neoclassical Period (circa 1920–1954)

The next phase of Stravinsky's compositional style extended from Mavra (1921–22), regarded as the start of Stravinsky's neo-classicism, until 1952, when he turned to serialism
Serialism
In music, serialism is a method or technique of composition that uses a series of values to manipulate different musical elements. Serialism began primarily with Arnold Schoenberg's twelve-tone technique, though his contemporaries were also working to establish serialism as one example of...

. Pulcinella
Pulcinella (ballet)
Pulcinella is a ballet by Igor Stravinsky based on an 18th-century play — Pulcinella is a character originating from Commedia dell'arte. The ballet premiered at the Paris Opera on 15 May 1920 under the baton of Ernest Ansermet. The dancer Léonide Massine created both the libretto and choreography,...

(1920) and the Octet
Octet (Stravinsky)
The Octet for wind instruments is a chamber-music composition by Igor Stravinsky, completed in 1923.Stravinsky’s Octet is scored for an unusual combination of woodwind and brass instruments: flute, clarinet in B and A, two bassoons, trumpet in C, trumpet in A, tenor trombone, and bass trombone...

 (for wind instruments, 1923) are Stravinsky's first compositions to feature his re-examination of the classical music of Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart , baptismal name Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart , was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical era. He composed over 600 works, many acknowledged as pinnacles of symphonic, concertante, chamber, piano, operatic, and choral music...

 and Bach
Johann Sebastian Bach
Johann Sebastian Bach was a German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, and violinist whose sacred and secular works for choir, orchestra, and solo instruments drew together the strands of the Baroque period and brought it to its ultimate maturity...

 and their contemporaries.

Other works such as (1927), (1928, for the Russian Ballet) and the Dumbarton Oaks
Concerto in E-flat (Dumbarton Oaks)
Concerto in E-flat , subtitled “Dumbarton Oaks 8-v-1938,” is a chamber concerto by Igor Stravinsky, named for the Dumbarton Oaks estate of Robert Woods Bliss and Mildred Barnes Bliss in Washington, DC, who commissioned it for their thirtieth wedding anniversary...

Concerto (1937–38) continued this re-thinking of eighteenth-century musical styles.

Works from this period include the three symphonies: the Symphonie des Psaumes (Symphony of Psalms
Symphony of Psalms
The Symphony of Psalms by Igor Stravinsky was written in 1930 and was commissioned by Serge Koussevitzky to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. This piece is a three-movement choral symphony and was composed during Stravinsky's neoclassical period. The symphony derives...

, 1930), Symphony in C
Symphony in C (Stravinsky)
The Symphony in C is a work by Russian expatriate composer Igor Stravinsky.The Symphony was written between 1938 and 1940 on a commission from American philanthropist Mrs. Robert Woods Bliss. It was a turbulent period of the composer's life, marked by illness and deaths in his immediate family...

 (1940) and Symphony in Three Movements
Symphony in Three Movements (Stravinsky)
The Symphony in Three Movements is a work by Russian expatriate composer Igor Stravinsky. Stravinsky wrote the symphony from 1942–45 on commission by the Philharmonic Symphony Society of New York...

 (1945). Apollon, Persephone (1933) and Orpheus (1947) exemplify not only Stravinsky's return to music of the Classical period, but also his exploration of themes from the ancient Classical world such as Greek mythology
Greek mythology
Greek mythology is the body of myths and legends belonging to the ancient Greeks, concerning their gods and heroes, the nature of the world, and the origins and significance of their own cult and ritual practices. They were a part of religion in ancient Greece...

.

Stravinsky completed his last neo-classical work, the opera The Rake's Progress
The Rake's Progress
The Rake's Progress is an opera in three acts and an epilogue by Igor Stravinsky. The libretto, written by W. H. Auden and Chester Kallman, is based loosely on the eight paintings and engravings A Rake's Progress of William Hogarth, which Stravinsky had seen on May 2, 1947, in a Chicago...

, in 1951, to a libretto by W. H. Auden
W. H. Auden
Wystan Hugh Auden , who published as W. H. Auden, was an Anglo-American poet,The first definition of "Anglo-American" in the OED is: "Of, belonging to, or involving both England and America." See also the definition "English in origin or birth, American by settlement or citizenship" in See also...

 based on the etchings of Hogarth
William Hogarth
William Hogarth was an English painter, printmaker, pictorial satirist, social critic and editorial cartoonist who has been credited with pioneering western sequential art. His work ranged from realistic portraiture to comic strip-like series of pictures called "modern moral subjects"...

. It was premiered in Venice in 1951, and given further production in Vienna, Geneva, Strasbourg, and several locations in Germany the next year, before being staged in Paris and New York (at the Metropolitan Opera
Metropolitan Opera
The Metropolitan Opera is an opera company, located in New York City. Originally founded in 1880, the company gave its first performance on October 22, 1883. The company is operated by the non-profit Metropolitan Opera Association, with Peter Gelb as general manager...

) in 1953. It was presented by the Santa Fe Opera
Santa Fe Opera
The Santa Fe Opera is an American opera company, located north of Santa Fe in the U.S. state of New Mexico, headquartered on a former guest ranch of .-General history:...

 in its first season in 1957 with Stravinsky in attendance, marking the beginning of his long association with the company, including a 1962 Stravinsky Festival the Opera House staged in honor of the composer's 80th birthday. The music is direct but quirky; it borrows from classic tonal harmony but also interjects surprising dissonances; it features Stravinsky's trademark off-rhythms; and it harks back to the operas and themes of Monteverdi
Claudio Monteverdi
Claudio Giovanni Antonio Monteverdi – 29 November 1643) was an Italian composer, gambist, and singer.Monteverdi's work, often regarded as revolutionary, marked the transition from the Renaissance style of music to that of the Baroque period. He developed two individual styles of composition – the...

, Gluck
Christoph Willibald Gluck
Christoph Willibald Ritter von Gluck was an opera composer of the early classical period. After many years at the Habsburg court at Vienna, Gluck brought about the practical reform of opera's dramaturgical practices that many intellectuals had been campaigning for over the years...

 and Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart , baptismal name Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart , was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical era. He composed over 600 works, many acknowledged as pinnacles of symphonic, concertante, chamber, piano, operatic, and choral music...

. The opera was revived by the Metropolitan Opera in 1997.

Serial Period (1954–1968)

Stravinsky began using serial
Serialism
In music, serialism is a method or technique of composition that uses a series of values to manipulate different musical elements. Serialism began primarily with Arnold Schoenberg's twelve-tone technique, though his contemporaries were also working to establish serialism as one example of...

 compositional techniques, including dodecaphony, the twelve-tone technique originally devised by Arnold Schoenberg
Arnold Schoenberg
Arnold Schoenberg was an Austrian composer, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School...

, in the early 1950s (after Schoenberg's death). Robert Craft
Robert Craft
Robert Lawson Craft is an American conductor and writer. He is best known for his intimate working friendship with Igor Stravinsky, a relationship which resulted in a number of recordings and books.-Life:...

 encouraged this undertaking.

He first experimented with non-twelve-tone serial technique in small-scale vocal and chamber works such as the Cantata
Cantata (Stravinsky)
The Cantata by Igor Stravinsky is a work for soprano, tenor, female choir, and instrumental ensemble , and was composed from April 1951 to August 1952. The premiere performance on 11 November 1952 was by the Los Angeles Symphony Society , conducted by Stravinsky himself...

(1952), Septet (1953), and Three Songs from Shakespeare (1953), and his first composition to be fully based on these twelve-tone serial techniques is In Memoriam Dylan Thomas (1954). Agon (1954–57) is his first work to include a twelve-tone series, and (1955) is his first piece to contain a movement entirely based on a tone row
Tone row
In music, a tone row or note row , also series and set, refers to a non-repetitive ordering of a set of pitch-classes, typically of the twelve notes in musical set theory of the chromatic scale, though both larger and smaller sets are sometimes found.-History and usage:Tone rows are the basis of...

 ("Surge, aquilo"). Stravinsky later expanded his use of dodecaphony in works including Threni
Threni (Stravinsky)
Threni: id est Lamentationes Jeremiae Prophetae, usually referred to simply as Threni, is a setting by Igor Stravinsky of verses from the Book of Lamentations in the Latin of the Vulgate, for solo singers, chorus and orchestra. It is important in Stravinsky's output as his first and longest...

(1958), A Sermon, a Narrative, and a Prayer (1961), and The Flood
The Flood (Stravinsky)
The Flood: A musical play is a short biblical drama by Igor Stravinsky on the allegory of Noah, originally written as an opera for television. CBS Television executive Alan Wagner commissioned the work...

(1962), which are based on biblical texts.

Agon, written from 1954 to 1957, is a ballet choreographed for twelve dancers. It is an important transitional composition between Stravinsky's neo-classical period and his serial style. Some numbers of Agon are reminiscent of the "white-note" tonality of his neo-classic period, while others (for example Bransle Gay) display his re-interpretation of serial methods.

Innovation and influence

Stravinsky is known as "one of music's truly epochal innovators". The most important aspect of Stravinsky's work aside from his technical innovations, including in rhythm and harmony, is the "changing face" of his compositional style while always "retaining a distinctive, essential identity". He himself was inspired by different cultures, languages and literatures. As a consequence, his influence on composers both during his lifetime and after his death was, and remains, considerable.

Composition

Stravinsky's use of motivic development
Motif (music)
In music, a motif or motive is a short musical idea, a salient recurring figure, musical fragment or succession of notes that has some special importance in or is characteristic of a composition....

 (the use of musical figures that are repeated in different guises throughout a composition or section of a composition) included additive motivic development. This is where notes are subtracted or added to a motif without regard to the consequent changes in meter. A similar technique may be found as early as the sixteenth century, for example in the music of Cipriano de Rore
Cipriano de Rore
Cipriano de Rore was a Franco-Flemish composer of the Renaissance, active in Italy...

, Orlandus Lassus
Orlande de Lassus
Orlande de Lassus was a Franco-Flemish composer of the late Renaissance...

, Carlo Gesualdo
Carlo Gesualdo
Carlo Gesualdo, known as Gesualdo di Venosa or Gesualdo da Venosa , Prince of Venosa and Count of Conza, was an Italian nobleman, lutenist, composer, and murderer....

, and Giovanni de Macque
Giovanni de Macque
Giovanni de Macque was a Franco-Flemish composer of the late Renaissance and early Baroque, who spent almost his entire life in Italy...

, music with which Stravinsky exhibited considerable familiarity.

The Rite of Spring is notable for its relentless use of ostinati
Ostinato
In music, an ostinato is a motif or phrase, which is persistently repeated in the same musical voice. An ostinato is always a succession of equal sounds, wherein each note always has the same weight or stress. The repeating idea may be a rhythmic pattern, part of a tune, or a complete melody in...

; for example, in the eighth note ostinato on strings accented by eight horns
Horn (instrument)
The horn is a brass instrument consisting of about of tubing wrapped into a coil with a flared bell. A musician who plays the horn is called a horn player ....

 in the section Augurs of Spring (Dances of the Young Girls). The work also contains passages where several ostinati clash against one another.

Rhythm

Stravinsky was noted for his distinctive use of rhythm, especially in The Rite of Spring. According to Philip Glass
Philip Glass
Philip Glass is an American composer. He is considered to be one of the most influential composers of the late 20th century and is widely acknowledged as a composer who has brought art music to the public .His music is often described as minimalist, along with...

:

the idea of pushing the rhythms across the bar lines [...] led the way [...]. The rhythmic structure of music became much more fluid and in a certain way spontaneous


Elsewhere, Glass mentions Stravinsky's "primitive, offbeat rhythmic drive". According to Andrew J. Browne, "Stravinsky is perhaps the only composer who has raised rhythm in itself to the dignity of art."
Stravinsky's rhythm and vitality greatly influenced composer Aaron Copland
Aaron Copland
Aaron Copland was an American composer, composition teacher, writer, and later in his career a conductor of his own and other American music. He was instrumental in forging a distinctly American style of composition, and is often referred to as "the Dean of American Composers"...

.

Neoclassicism

Stravinsky's first neo-classical works were the ballet Pulcinella of 1920, and the stripped-down and delicately scored Octet for Wind Instruments of 1923. Stravinsky may have been preceded in his use of neoclassical devices by composers such as Sergei Prokofiev
Sergei Prokofiev
Sergei Sergeyevich Prokofiev was a Russian composer, pianist and conductor who mastered numerous musical genres and is regarded as one of the major composers of the 20th century...

 and Erik Satie
Erik Satie
Éric Alfred Leslie Satie was a French composer and pianist. Satie was a colourful figure in the early 20th century Parisian avant-garde...

. By the late 1920s and 1930s, the use by composers of neoclassicism had become widespread.

Quotation

Stravinsky continued a long tradition, stretching back at least to the fifteenth century in the form of the quodlibet
Quodlibet
A quodlibet is a piece of music combining several different melodies, usually popular tunes, in counterpoint and often a light-hearted, humorous manner...

 and parody mass
Parody mass
A parody mass is a musical setting of the mass, typically from the 16th century, that uses multiple voices of another pre-existing piece of music, such as a fragment of a motet or a secular chanson, as part of its melodic material. It is distinguished from the two other most prominent types of...

, by composing pieces which elaborate on individual works by earlier composers. An early example of this is his Pulcinella
Pulcinella (ballet)
Pulcinella is a ballet by Igor Stravinsky based on an 18th-century play — Pulcinella is a character originating from Commedia dell'arte. The ballet premiered at the Paris Opera on 15 May 1920 under the baton of Ernest Ansermet. The dancer Léonide Massine created both the libretto and choreography,...

of 1920, in which he used music which at the time was attributed to Giovanni Pergolesi
Giovanni Battista Pergolesi
Giovanni Battista Pergolesi was an Italian composer, violinist and organist.-Biography:Born at Iesi, Pergolesi studied music there under a local musician, Francesco Santini, before going to Naples in 1725, where he studied under Gaetano Greco and Francesco Feo among others...

  as source material, at times quoting it
Musical quotation
Musical quotation is the practice of directly quoting another work in a new composition. The quotation may be from the same composer's work , or from a different composer's work ....

 directly and at other times reinventing it. He developed the technique further in the ballet The Fairy's Kiss of 1928, based on the music—mostly piano pieces—of Tchaikovsky
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (Russian: Пётр Ильи́ч Чайко́вский ; often "Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky" in English. His names are also transliterated "Piotr" or "Petr"; "Ilitsch", "Il'ich" or "Illyich"; and "Tschaikowski", "Tschaikowsky", "Chajkovskij"...

. Later examples of comparable musical transformations include Stravinsky's use of Schubert
Franz Schubert
Franz Peter Schubert was an Austrian composer.Although he died at an early age, Schubert was tremendously prolific. He wrote some 600 Lieder, nine symphonies , liturgical music, operas, some incidental music, and a large body of chamber and solo piano music...

's Marche Militaire No. 1 in Circus Polka
Circus Polka
Circus Polka: For a Young Elephant was written by Igor Stravinsky in 1942. He composed it for a ballet production the choreographer George Balanchine did for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. The ballet was performed by fifty elephants and fifty ballerinas...

(1942) and "Happy Birthday to You
Happy Birthday to You
"Happy Birthday to You", also known more simply as "Happy Birthday", is a song that is traditionally sung to celebrate the anniversary of a person's birth...

" in Greeting Prelude (1955).

Folk material

In The Rite of Spring Stravinsky stripped folk themes to their most basic melodic outlines, and often contorted them beyond recognition with added notes, and other techniques including inversion
Inversion (music)
In music theory, the word inversion has several meanings. There are inverted chords, inverted melodies, inverted intervals, and inverted voices...

 and diminution
Diminution
In Western music and music theory, diminution has four distinct meanings. Diminution may be a form of embellishment in which a long note is divided into a series of shorter, usually melodic, values...

.

Orchestra

Like many of the late romantic composers
Romantic music
Romantic music or music in the Romantic Period is a musicological and artistic term referring to a particular period, theory, compositional practice, and canon in Western music history, from 1810 to 1900....

, Stravinsky often called for huge orchestral forces, especially in the early ballets. His first breakthrough The Firebird
The Firebird
The Firebird is a 1910 ballet created by the composer Igor Stravinsky and choreographer Michel Fokine. The ballet is based on Russian folk tales of the magical glowing bird of the same name that is both a blessing and a curse to its captor....

proved him the equal of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Nikolai Andreyevich Rimsky-Korsakov was a Russian composer, and a member of the group of composers known as The Five.The Five, also known as The Mighty Handful or The Mighty Coterie, refers to a circle of composers who met in Saint Petersburg, Russia, in the years 1856–1870: Mily Balakirev , César...

 and lit the "fuse under the instrumental make-up of the 19th century orchestra". In The Firebird he took the orchestra apart and analyzed it. The Rite of Spring on the other hand has been characterized by Aaron Copland
Aaron Copland
Aaron Copland was an American composer, composition teacher, writer, and later in his career a conductor of his own and other American music. He was instrumental in forging a distinctly American style of composition, and is often referred to as "the Dean of American Composers"...

 as the foremost orchestral achievement of the 20th century.

Stravinsky also wrote for unique combinations of instruments in smaller ensembles, chosen for their precise tone colours. For example, Histoire du soldat
Histoire du soldat
Histoire du soldat , composed by Igor Stravinsky, is a 1918 theatrical work "to be read, played, and danced" . The libretto, which is based on a Russian folk tale, was written in French by the Swiss universalist writer C.F. Ramuz...

(The Soldier's Tale) is scored for clarinet
Clarinet
The clarinet is a musical instrument of woodwind type. The name derives from adding the suffix -et to the Italian word clarino , as the first clarinets had a strident tone similar to that of a trumpet. The instrument has an approximately cylindrical bore, and uses a single reed...

, bassoon
Bassoon
The bassoon is a woodwind instrument in the double reed family that typically plays music written in the bass and tenor registers, and occasionally higher. Appearing in its modern form in the 19th century, the bassoon figures prominently in orchestral, concert band and chamber music literature...

, cornet
Cornet
The cornet is a brass instrument very similar to the trumpet, distinguished by its conical bore, compact shape, and mellower tone quality. The most common cornet is a transposing instrument in B. It is not related to the renaissance and early baroque cornett or cornetto.-History:The cornet was...

, trombone
Trombone
The trombone is a musical instrument in the brass family. Like all brass instruments, sound is produced when the player’s vibrating lips cause the air column inside the instrument to vibrate...

, violin, double bass
Double bass
The double bass, also called the string bass, upright bass, standup bass or contrabass, is the largest and lowest-pitched bowed string instrument in the modern symphony orchestra, with strings usually tuned to E1, A1, D2 and G2...

 and percussion, a strikingly unusual combination for 1918.

Stravinsky occasionally exploited the extreme ranges of instruments, most famously at the opening of The Rite of Spring where Stravinsky uses the extreme upper reaches of the bassoon to simulate the symbolic "awakening" of a spring morning.

Reception

Erik Satie
Erik Satie
Éric Alfred Leslie Satie was a French composer and pianist. Satie was a colourful figure in the early 20th century Parisian avant-garde...

 wrote an article about Igor Stravinsky that was published in Vanity Fair
Vanity Fair (magazine)
Vanity Fair is a magazine of pop culture, fashion, and current affairs published by Condé Nast. The present Vanity Fair has been published since 1983 and there have been editions for four European countries as well as the U.S. edition. This revived the title which had ceased publication in 1935...

. Satie had met Stravinsky for the first time in 1910. Satie's attitude towards the Russian composer is marked by deference, as can be seen from the letters he wrote him in 1922, preparing for the Vanity Fair article. With a touch of irony, he concluded one of these letters "I admire you: are you not the Great Stravinsky? I am but little Erik Satie." In the published article, Satie argued that measuring the "greatness" of an artist by comparing him to other artists, as if speaking about some "truth", is illusory: every piece of music should be judged on its own merits, not by comparing it to the standards of other composers. That was exactly what Jean Cocteau
Jean Cocteau
Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau was a French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, playwright, artist and filmmaker. His circle of associates, friends and lovers included Kenneth Anger, Pablo Picasso, Jean Hugo, Jean Marais, Henri Bernstein, Marlene Dietrich, Coco Chanel, Erik Satie, María...

 had done, when commenting deprecatingly on Stravinsky in his 1918 book .

According to the Musical Times in 1923:
All the signs indicate a strong reaction against the nightmare of noise and eccentricity that was one of the legacies of the war.... What has become of the works that made up the program of the Stravinsky concert which created such a stir a few years ago? Practically the whole lot are already on the shelf, and they will remain there until a few jaded neurotics once more feel a desire to eat ashes and fill their belly with the east wind.


In 1935, American composer Marc Blitzstein
Marc Blitzstein
Marcus Samuel Blitzstein, better known as Marc Blitzstein , was an American composer. He won national attention in 1937 when his pro-union musical The Cradle Will Rock, directed by Orson Welles, was shut down by the Works Progress Administration...

 compared Stravinsky to Jacopo Peri
Jacopo Peri
Jacopo Peri was an Italian composer and singer of the transitional period between the Renaissance and Baroque styles, and is often called the inventor of opera...

 and C.P.E. Bach
Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach
right|250pxCarl Philipp Emanuel Bach was a German Classical period musician and composer, the fifth child and second son of Johann Sebastian Bach and Maria Barbara Bach...

, conceding that "There is no denying the greatness of Stravinsky. It is just that he is not great enough". Blitzstein's Marxist
Marxism
Marxism is an economic and sociopolitical worldview and method of socioeconomic inquiry that centers upon a materialist interpretation of history, a dialectical view of social change, and an analysis and critique of the development of capitalism. Marxism was pioneered in the early to mid 19th...

 position is that Stravinsky's wish was to "divorce music from other streams of life," which is "symptomatic of an escape from reality", resulting in a "loss of stamina his new works show", naming specifically Apollo, the Capriccio, and Le Baiser de la fée.

Composer Constant Lambert
Constant Lambert
Leonard Constant Lambert was a British composer and conductor.-Early life:Lambert, the son of Russian-born Australian painter George Lambert, was educated at Christ's Hospital and the Royal College of Music...

 described pieces such as (The Soldier's Tale) as containing "essentially cold-blooded abstraction". Lambert continued, "melodic fragments in are completely meaningless themselves. They are merely successions of notes that can conveniently be divided into groups of three, five, and seven and set against other mathematical groups", and he described the cadenza for solo drums as "musical purity...achieved by a species of musical castration". He compared Stravinsky's choice of "the drabbest and least significant phrases" to Gertrude Stein
Gertrude Stein
Gertrude Stein was an American writer, poet and art collector who spent most of her life in France.-Early life:...

's: "Everyday they were gay there, they were regularly gay there everyday" ("Helen Furr and Georgine Skeene", 1922), "whose effect would be equally appreciated by someone with no knowledge of English whatsoever".

In his book Philosophy of Modern Music (1949), Theodor W. Adorno
Theodor W. Adorno
Theodor W. Adorno was a German sociologist, philosopher, and musicologist known for his critical theory of society....

 called Stravinsky an acrobat and spoke of hebephrenic
Disorganized schizophrenia
Disorganized schizophrenia, also known as hebephrenia is a subtype of schizophrenia as defined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, DSM-IV code 295.10....

 and psychotic traits in several of Stravinsky's works. Contrary to a common misconception, however, Adorno didn't think that the hebephrenic and psychotic imitations Stravinsky's music was supposed to contain were its main fault, as he clearly pointed out in a postscriptum added later to his "Philosophy": Adorno's criticism of Stravinsky is more concerned with the "transition to 'positivity'" Adorno found in Stravinsky's neoclassical works. Part of the composer's error, in Adorno's view, was his neo-classicism, but more important was his music's "pseudomorphism of painting," playing off (time-space) rather than (time-duration) of Henri Bergson
Henri Bergson
Henri-Louis Bergson was a major French philosopher, influential especially in the first half of the 20th century. Bergson convinced many thinkers that immediate experience and intuition are more significant than rationalism and science for understanding reality.He was awarded the 1927 Nobel Prize...

. "One trick characterizes all of Stravinsky's formal endeavors: the effort of his music to portray time as in a circus tableau and to present time complexes as though they were spatial. This trick, however, soon exhausts itself." His "rhythmic procedures closely resemble the schema of catatonic conditions. In certain schizophrenics, the process by which the motor apparatus becomes independent leads to infinite repetition of gestures or words, following the decay of the ego."

Stravinsky's reception in Russia and the USSR went back and forth. Performances of his music stopped from around 1933 until 1962, when Nikita Khrushchev
Nikita Khrushchev
Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev led the Soviet Union during part of the Cold War. He served as First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1964, and as Chairman of the Council of Ministers, or Premier, from 1958 to 1964...

 invited Stravinsky for an official state visit. In 1972 an official proclamation by the Soviet Minister of Culture, Ekaterina Furtseva, ordered Soviet musicians to "study and admire" Stravinsky's music, and made hostility toward it a potential offense.

According to Gabriel Josipovici
Gabriel Josipovici
Gabriel David Josipovici FBA, FRSL is a British novelist, short story writer, critic, literary theorist, and playwright.-Biography:...

, The Rake's Progress is perhaps the only one of Stravinsy's works that "gives a justification in terms of human psychology, and of the realities of our world, for that obsessional need to repeat and return".

While Stravinsky's music has been criticized for its range of styles, scholars had "gradually begun to perceive unifying elements in Stravinsky's music" by the 1980s. Earlier writers, such as Aaron Copland, Elliott Carter, Boris de Schloezer, and Virgil Thomson, writing in Modern Music (a quarterly review published between 1925 and 1946), could find only a common "'seriousness' of 'tone' or of 'purpose', 'the exact correlation between the goal and the means', or a dry 'ant-like neatness'".

However, from the mid-1960s onward Stravinsky's influence is encountered in many musicians' work, including Steve Reich
Steve Reich
Stephen Michael "Steve" Reich is an American composer who together with La Monte Young, Terry Riley, and Philip Glass is a pioneering composer of minimal music...

, Philip Glass
Philip Glass
Philip Glass is an American composer. He is considered to be one of the most influential composers of the late 20th century and is widely acknowledged as a composer who has brought art music to the public .His music is often described as minimalist, along with...

 and others.

He was honored in 1982 by the United States Postal Service
United States Postal Service
The United States Postal Service is an independent agency of the United States government responsible for providing postal service in the United States...

 with a 2¢ Great Americans series
Great Americans series
The Great Americans series is a set of definitive stamps issued by the United States Postal Service, starting on December 27, 1980 with the 19¢ stamp depicting Sequoyah, and continuing through 2002, the final stamp being the 78¢ Alice Paul self-adhesive stamp. The series, noted for its simplicity...

 postage stamp.

Recordings

Igor Stravinsky found recordings a practical and useful tool in preserving his own thoughts on the interpretation of his music. As a conductor of his own music, he recorded primarily for Columbia Records
Columbia Records
Columbia Records is an American record label, owned by Japan's Sony Music Entertainment, operating under the Columbia Music Group with Aware Records. It was founded in 1888, evolving from an earlier enterprise, the American Graphophone Company — successor to the Volta Graphophone Company...

, beginning in 1928 with a performance of the original suite from The Firebird and concluding in 1967 with the 1945 suite from the same ballet. In the late 1940s, he made several recordings for RCA Victor at the Republic Studios in Los Angeles. Although most of his recordings were made with studio musicians, he also worked with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Chicago Symphony Orchestra
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra is an American orchestra based in Chicago, Illinois. It is one of the five American orchestras commonly referred to as the "Big Five". Founded in 1891, the Symphony makes its home at Orchestra Hall in Chicago and plays a summer season at the Ravinia Festival...

, the Cleveland Orchestra
Cleveland Orchestra
The Cleveland Orchestra is an American orchestra based in Cleveland, Ohio. It is one of the five American orchestras informally referred to as the "Big Five". Founded in 1918, the orchestra plays most of its concerts at Severance Hall...

, the CBC Symphony Orchestra
CBC Symphony Orchestra
The CBC Symphony Orchestra was a Canadian orchestra based in Toronto, Ontario that was operated by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation during the 1950s and 1960s. Founded in 1952, conductor Geoffrey Waddington served as the orchestra'a only music director; although other conductors, such as...

, the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra is a British orchestra based in London. It tours widely, and is sometimes referred to as "Britain's national orchestra"...

, and the Bavarian Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra.

During his lifetime, Stravinsky appeared on several telecasts, including the 1962 world premiere of The Flood
The Flood (Stravinsky)
The Flood: A musical play is a short biblical drama by Igor Stravinsky on the allegory of Noah, originally written as an opera for television. CBS Television executive Alan Wagner commissioned the work...

on CBS
CBS
CBS Broadcasting Inc. is a major US commercial broadcasting television network, which started as a radio network. The name is derived from the initials of the network's former name, Columbia Broadcasting System. The network is sometimes referred to as the "Eye Network" in reference to the shape of...

 television; although Stravinsky appeared on the telecast, the actual performance was conducted by Robert Craft
Robert Craft
Robert Lawson Craft is an American conductor and writer. He is best known for his intimate working friendship with Igor Stravinsky, a relationship which resulted in a number of recordings and books.-Life:...

. Numerous films and videos of the composer have been preserved.

Further reading

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External links



Recordings
  • Piano works performed by Alberto Cobo:
  • Four Russian Peasant Songs (Подблюдные), Cantilena, Roman Moiseyev
    Roman Moiseyev
    Roman Yurevich Moiseyev is a Russian conductor.Roman Moiseyev was born in Moscow, Russia. He received a solid musical education at the Academic College of Music with the Moscow State Conservatory, and later at the Russian Gnesin Academy of Music and Moscow State Conservatory with Gennady...

    , conductor:
    • 1. On Saints' Days in Chigisakh (У Спаса в Чигисах)
    • 2. Ovsen (Овсень)
    • 3. The Pike (Щука)
    • 4. Master Portly (Пузище)
  • Three Pieces for Solo Clarinet, performed by Ted Gurch, clarinet: No. 1, No. 2, No. 3
  • Les Noces performed on pianola by Rex Lawson: The Virtuoso Pianolist
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