„A musical event in Münich has brought me a great dolt.... an evening of chamber-music by Arnold Schoenberg (Vienna).... the audience behaved loutishly, like school brats, sneezing and clearing their throats, when not tittering and scraping their chairs, so it was hard to follow the music. Can you imagine a music in which tonality (that is, the adherence to any key) is completely suspended? I was constantly reminded of Kandinsky's large composition which also permits no trace of tonality.... and also of Kandinsky's 'jumping spots' in hearing this music [of Schoenberg], which allows each tone sounded to stand on its own (a kind of white canvas between the spots of color). Schönberg proceeds from the principle that the concepts of consonance and dissonance do not exist at all. A so-called dissonance is only a mere remote consonance – an idea which now occupies me constantly while painting..“

—  Franz Marc, 1911 - 1914, In a letter to August Macke (14 January 1911); as quoted in August Macke; Franz Marc: Briefwechsel, Cologne 1965; as quoted in Boston Modern - Figurative Expressionism as Alternative Modernism, Judith Bookbinder, University Press of New England, Hanover and England, 2005, p. 35 Franz Marc visited a concert with music of the composer Arnold Schönberg on 11 Jan. 1911 with Wassily Kandinsky, Alexej von Jawlensky, Gabriele Münter and others; they played there compositions of Schönberg he wrote in 1907 and 1909: his second string quartet and the 'Three piano pieces'
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Franz Marc1
1880 - 1916
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„[ Schoenberg's ] music leads us into a realm where musical experience is a matter not of the ear but of the soul alone, and at this point the music of the future begins.“

—  Wassily Kandinsky Russian painter 1866 - 1944
1910 - 1915, Quote of Kandinsky, 1911; in Concerning the Spiritual in Art, transl. Michael T. Sadler (1914); reprint. New York: Dover, 1977), p. 17

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„Music is the tonal analogue of emotive life.“

—  Susanne K. Langer American philosopher 1895 - 1985
Feeling and Form, ch. 1, p. 27, Scribner (1953)

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„People often complain that music is too ambiguous, that what they should think when they hear it is so unclear, whereas everyone understands words. With me, it is exactly the opposite, and not only with regard to an entire speech but also with individual words. These, too, seem to me so ambiguous, so vague, so easily misunderstood in comparison to genuine music, which fills the soul with a thousand things better than words. The thoughts which are expressed to me by music that I love are not too indefinite to be put into words, but on the contrary, too definite.“

—  Felix Mendelssohn German composer, pianist and conductor 1809 - 1847
Die Leute beklagen sich gewöhnlich, die Musik sei so vieldeutig; es sei so zweifelhaft, was sie sich dabei zu denken hätten, und die Worte verstände doch ein Jeder. Mir geht es aber gerade umgekehrt. Und nicht blos mit ganzen Reden, auch mit einzelnen Worten, auch die scheinen mir so vieldeutig, so unbestimmt, so mißverständlich im Vergleich zu einer rechten Musik, die einem die Seele erfüllt mit tausend besseren Dingen als Worten. Das, was mir eine Musik ausspricht, die ich liebe, sind mir nicht zu unbestimmte Gedanken, um sie in Worte zu fassen, sondern zu bestimmte. Letter to Marc-André Souchay, October 15, 1842, cited from Briefe aus den Jahren 1830 bis 1847 (Leipzig: Hermann Mendelssohn, 1878) p. 221; translation from Felix Mendelssohn (ed. Gisella Selden-Goth) Letters (New York: Pantheon, 1945) pp. 313-14.

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„The pre-World War I works of Schoenberg, Berg, and Webern, "give a glimpse of a new universe of emancipated discourse, unfortunately quickly abandoned when Schoenberg returned to the classical musical shapes upon adopting the twelve-tone system."“

—  Elliott Carter American composer 1908 - 2012
Elliott Carter (1977). The Writings of Elliott Carter, p.186. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Cited in Albright, Daniel (2004). Modernism and Music: An Anthology of Sources. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0226012670.

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