Friday, November 03, 2006


That being the name of the major Michael Tippett 90th birthday festival held in 1995 (the year The Rose Lake was premiered - one of my all-time musical memories: 19 February, Barbican Arts Centre). Anyway, it came to mind when I was trying to think of an appropriate quotation to mark the fourth birthday of this - now rather occasional - eclectic music weblog. And here it is (below), from Tippett's collection of essays Moving Into Aquarius. I'd take it as a decent job description for a poet, a theologian, a philosopher and an artist, too. But a musician has the advantage of working with the only truly asbstract language, when you think about it...

"I know that my true function within a society which embraces all of us, is to continue an age-old tradition, fundamental to our civilization, which goes back to pre-history and will go forward into the unknown future. This tradition is to create images from the depths of the imagination and to give them form whether visual, intellectual or musical. For it is only through images that the inner world communicates at all. Images of the past, shapes of the future. Images of vigour for a decadent period, images of calm for one too violent. Images of reconciliation for worlds torn by division. And in an age of mediocrity and shattered dreams, images of abounding, generous, exuberant beauty.”

[Image, 'Tippett in the Countryside', with acknowledgements to (c) Schott Music]

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