„All innovators, logically speaking, have been Futurists in relation to their time. Palestrina would have thought that Bach was crazy, and Bach would have thought Beethoven the same, and Beethoven would have thought Wagner equally so.
Rossini liked to boast that he had finally understood the music of Wagner—by reading it backward; Verdi, after listening to the overture to Tannhäuser, wrote to a friend that Wagner was mad.
So we stand at the window of a glorious mental hospital, even while we unhesitatingly declare that counterpoint and the fugue, which even today are still considered the most important branches of musical instruction…“

Original text:
Tutti gli innovatori sono stati logicamente futuristi, in relazione ai loro tempi. Palestrina avrebbe giudicato pazzo Bach, e così Bach avrebbe giudicato Beethoven, e così Beethoven avrebbe giudicato Wagner.
Rossini si vantava di aver finalmente capito la musica di Wagner leggendola a rovescio! Verdi, dopo un’audizione dell’ouverture del Tannhäuser, in una lettera a un suo amico chiamava Wagner matto.
Siamo dunque alla finestra di un manicomio glorioso, mentre dichiariamo, senza esitare, che il contrappunto e la fuga, ancor oggi considerati come il ramo più importante dell’insegnamento musicale...
Source: Technical Manifesto of Futurist Music (1911), p. 80

Adopted from Wikiquote. Last update Sept. 13, 2021. History
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