Musical Borrowing
An Annotated Bibliography

Individual record

[+] Busoni, Ferruccio. The Essence of Music. Translated by Rosamond Ley. London: Rockliff, 1957.

Busoni's "young classicism" views music as a simultaneous mixture of old and new styles, "the mastery, the sifting and the turning to account of all the gains of previous experiments and their inclusion in strong and beautiful forms." He believed (pp. 85-95, 150-51) that Liszt's operatic fantasies are different from the "plebeian pot-pourri" and that the transcription is a legitimate art form, because (1) Bach, Beethoven, Liszt, and Brahms wrote quality transcriptions, (2) notation itself is the transcription of an abstract idea, (3) performances are all transcriptions, (4) some great compositions sound like transcriptions, and (5) transcriptions are like variations, which also change original music.

Works: Liszt: Don Juan Fantasy (89-95), transcription of Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique (151).

Index Classifications: 1800s

Contributed by: Daniel Bertram

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