excerpt from 'Memories and Commentaries' pp. 137 (192 words)

excerpt from 'Memories and Commentaries' pp. 137 (192 words)

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Memories and Commentaries

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The suggestion that was to lead to Pulcinella came from Diaghilev in September 1919, while we were walking together in the Place de la Concorde: ‘Don’t protest at what I am about to say. I know you are much taken by your Alpine colleagues’ – said with withering contempt – ‘but I have an idea that I think will amuse you more than anything they can propose. I want you to look at some delightful eighteenth-century music with the idea of orchestrating it for a ballet.’ When he revealed that the composer was Pergolesi, I thought he must be deranged. I knew Pergolesi only by the Stabat Mater and La serva padrona, and though I had just seen a production of the latter in Barcelona, Diaghilev knew I wasn’t in the least excited by it. But I promised to look at the music and to give him my opinion. / I did look, and I fell in love. My ultimate selection of pieces derived only partly from Diaghilev’s examples, though I played through the whole of them, and the other part from published editions.

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excerpt from 'Memories and Commentaries' pp. 137 (192 words)


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