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Brian Ferneyhough QUOTES / QUOTATIONS
Actually, most things I say in public lead more or less directly to my own compositional practice, so I should be careful about generalizing lest they come back to haunt me.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
As a necessary prerequisite to the creation of new forms of expression one might, I suppose, argue that current sensibilities respond uniquely to the notion of exhaustion as exhaustion, although that does de facto seem rather limiting.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
By reason of weird translation, many such sets of instructions read like poems anyhow.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
Certainly being in California has encouraged a sustained commitment to rethinking the nature, purposes, and relevance of the contemporary arts, specifically music, for a society which by and large seems to manage quite well without them.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
Composers dialogue - and obsessively, bitterly argue - with other composers, often over the span of several centuries.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
From a previous generation, Zimmermann comes to mind as someone who took a lot of conscious risks upon himself in battling the Angel of History.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
Hence my obstinate emphasis on stylistic continuity from work to work rather than specific sibling relationships between the individual work and other members of its stylistic 'family' in the world outside.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I am certainly not arguing for the de facto autonomy of the individual work, even though there is much to be said for making the attempt to see it in that light as one facet of the reception process.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I assume that relative ratios between different-length measures are to some significant degree appreciable in and of themselves.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I do agree, though, that the issue of 'active interpretation' is very much alive and needs to be explored further.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I don't see 'lines of force' as being destructive, except to the extent that they are exclusively traceable through observance of the path of distorted material left in their wake.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I don't want to seen to be preaching: of course, any artist is free to approach previous materials in any way that seems interesting.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I frequently compose out the entire metric structure of a piece in modified cyclic form, where each cyclic revolution undergoes some form of 'variation' much as if measure lengths were concrete musical 'material.'
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I have myself been stimulated by the confrontation of mutually incompatible realms of discourse in the field of literature.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I suppose that the scope and implications of such forces have rendered my personal accounting ritual pretty much obsolete. That's how things sometimes go.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I would not say that I was, these days, a 'student' of philosophy, although in my youth I was quite deeply involved with certain aspects of the British pragmatists.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
I'm perplexed, though, by your application of the term 'negative' to my figural imagery.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
If nothing is at risk, nothing is established.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
If the work of art is to continue pursuing the vision of both being in and of the world but nevertheless in some fashion being more than just one more object to the mounting clutter, this is the specific point, I think, where this must be assured.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
In any case, the fewer boundaries that exist hindering free movement between all forms of articulate human cognition, the better.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
In my model, important interference phenomena arise when individual strata come into contact. These chaotic fluctuations are, I suppose, what my music is really 'about.'
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
In my own recent String Trio I attempt to superimpose two quite different sets of formal strategies, both of which, ultimately, refer back to historical precedent.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
It is still true that it is easier to compose a poem in the form of a manual for adjusting a VCR than it is to write a piece using just tuning as a symphony.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
More, perhaps, than in any other art form, music feeds off contemporary perceptions (and creative misunderstandings) of its own tradition.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
My own position is, that it is largely up to the work itself to suggest the nature of these referential points without dimensions in and through the processes by which the distance between them is maintained.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
Naturally enough, I couldn't have foreseen the vast sea change which has come upon that scene as a result of German reunification and associated events.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
Other composers have taken this particular technique much further than I in the meantime, with the result that the Law of Diminishing Returns has begun to apply.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
Questioning the nature and implications of liminal instances necessarily involves failure, if only in the specifically technical sense of entering spaces where prevailing criteria of success scarcely apply.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
So: we're all tired. Now what? Manuscripts written in Club Med?
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
Sometimes one can be so closely involved with things that the larger context is lost to view.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
The idea of 'machine assemblage' is, especially, very alien to my sensibility, since it suggests a relative indifference of the strata to one another during the process of construction.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
The past nine years in San Diego have represented such a period of questioning.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
The recent appearance of my Collected Writings has of course tended to mark a psychological milestone of sorts in my relation to things theoretical.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
The Western musical canon came about not merely by accumulation, but by opposition and subversion, both to the ruling powers on whom composers depended for their livelihoods and to other musics.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
There would seem to be a limit, even for an art preoccupied with boundaries and transgressions, beyond which a work reaches its breaking point and becomes an actual failure, a mere experimentation.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
This was possible only by dint of extended periods of frequently quite painful reflection and digestion.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
What effect these nine years have had or will have on my composing I really don't know - probably I'll be the last one to find out.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
What makes a specific quality or quantity of innovation retain its intense newness over the years?
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
When I left Europe in 1987 I did so with the thought that my relevance as a composition teacher would benefit from a certain cool distance to certain tendencies I had been observing for several years with increasing disquiet.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
When I speak of "cycles," I am referring to lengthy intervals of relative homogeneity, if not in the resolving of problems, than at least with respect to the consistency of their capacity to productively irritate.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
Why, in such a case, should the performer essay any sort of considered approach at all?
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough
With respect to the respective French and German traditions you are no doubt correct, although I am reluctant to see individual achievement reduced to archetypes.
Quotation of Brian Ferneyhough