Der Economist mal wieder in Hochform, wie eigentlich immer bei den Obituaries. Dieses Mal leider zu Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau:

„He was shy and unforthcoming to strangers, slipping away after performances to eat his favourite semolina in his hotel room alone. He often felt uncertain about roles. What he never doubted was that music was meant to be his life, ever since he had listened, curled up under the piano like a small burrowing animal, to the eerie vibrations of his father striking the keys. His four marriages and three sons meant much to him, he conceded; but music meant more. It was his love and his life, the gift he had been given, the rock he clung to and the compulsion he laboured under, as his beloved Schubert had done. His book-length study of the Lieder concluded that the world was a mere shadow to the composer. It was the same to him.

In later life he took up painting, mostly of woods around his Munich house. This gave him the chance, he said, to prove he could create from scratch as well as recreate. But interpretation possessed him even after he retired. To bring songs alive for new ears; to break the ice, and find fresh water; to revive again and again the joy of spring, the gleam of green and even the figure of Schubert’s hurdy-gurdy man, playing his heartbreaking tune for someone, anyone, in the snowy waste to hear.”

Auch Stephen Fry ruft nach und schlägt dabei einen großen Bogen, unter anderem zu klassischer Musik an sich und überhaupt:

„Classical music isn’t to be danced to, it doesn’t necessarily remind you of your first snog or your first bust up – those inestimable, moving and essential services are certainly part of popular music’s draw and connective power. Classical music, since that is what we must call it, is something else. It must be payed attention to. It is not wallpaper or “the soundtrack to one’s life” as much other music in my life (happily) is. It is Art. There, I said it and I can’t and won’t apologise for making that distinction. I’d go the gallows for it. (…) Classical music is, functionally at least, beyond fashion and outside time, (though of course it can be studied in quite the reverse way). To engage you need know nothing, only to be able to sit and listen. To make the journey and visit the places the music takes you.

You will find yourself inside the most astonishing aural architecture that has ever been constructed. Frightening, awe-inspiring, forbidding at first. But when you realise that these pieces were written by people like you who believe first in foremost in love and hope, bliss, justice and connection, and that they want to take you by the hand and cause your heart to burst in your breast for joy and wonder and pity, the fear melts away. Not something one is always ready for, any more than one could eat haute cuisine every day. But when you need it, oh the difference …“

(Links via @TheEconomist und @therealstief)