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5 December 1985
... as his nerves die down and the nerves take over. That hand is alive and my feet are alive, feeling the pinch of expensive new shoes, and I am moved by being moved as the coffin crawls to the fire. Hans, there is still more of this, more of undertakers locking the hearse and seeing the plastic safety bolts slide, like suppositories, slowly away, as we re-enter the sunshine alive with eyes to see by ...
5 August 1982
... From the simple question of the quality of reportage through the central problem of footballing professionalism to the downright philosophical challenges which peaks of human endeavour (any peak, any endeavour) inevitably present, the latest World Cup proved both the most informative and the most insight-provoking ever – ever since, that is, television has enabled football-loving humanity to watch ...

Music and Beyond

Hans Keller

21 October 1982
Hanns Eisler: Political Musician 
by Albrecht Betz, translated by Bill Hopkins.
Cambridge, 326 pp., £25, June 1982, 0 521 24022 0
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Music and Political: Collected Writings 1953-81 
by Hans​ Werner Henze, translated by Peter Labanyi.
Faber, 286 pp., £15, July 1982, 0 571 11719 8
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Vindications: Essays on Romantic Music 
by Deryck Cooke and Bryan Magee.
Faber, 226 pp., £12.50, July 1982, 0 571 11795 3
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... what he thought was a difference: ‘To avoid ... misunderstanding, I must stress that the conception of the latter themes of a work being evolved from the initial one is my own; the orthodox view of HansKeller, the creator of the special technique of Functional Analysis, and his disciples, is that the latter themes are related to the initial one, which is thus not given precedence over the other ...
3 September 1987
... I only need to hear a few bars from Mozart’s G minor Symphony (K. 550) and in a flash Hans is as vivid a presence as he was when he was alive. Not any old bars, mind you: to be precise, bars 125 to 136 of the finale, where in a remarkable unison passage which propels us into the ...

Words about Music

Hans Keller

30 December 1982
Stravinsky: Selected Correspondence, Vol. I 
edited by Robert Craft.
Faber, 471 pp., £25, September 1982, 0 571 11724 4
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Igor Stravinsky: The Rake’s Progress 
by Paul Griffiths, Igor Stravinsky, Robert Craft and Gabriel Josipovici.
Cambridge, 109 pp., £9.95, September 1982, 0 521 23746 7
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... the coincidence, within one and the same mind, of supernormal art and moral subnormality. I only met Stravinsky once – and had never met such a small-minded great mind before. From the words ‘Mr Keller!’, exclaimed with hypocritical enthusiasm, I was being flattered out of existence, in that our subject of conversation, my analyses, had to submit, paradoxically, to a sales talk without an ounce ...

Aghast

Philip Booth

30 December 1982
Stravinsky Seen and Heard 
by Hans Keller and Milein Cosman.
Toccata Press, 127 pp., £5.95, March 1982, 0 907689 01 9
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Nadia Boulanger: A Life in Music 
by Léonie Rosenstiel.
Norton, 427 pp., £16.95, October 1982, 0 393 01495 9
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... The husband-and-wife team of HansKeller and Milein Cosman looks at Stravinsky in his later years from two very different points of view: on the one hand, that of the rational music critic and analyst; on the other, that of the subjective ...

Untruthful Sex

Hans Keller

6 August 1981
Sex: Facts, Frauds and Follies 
by Thomas Szasz.
Blackwell, 194 pp., £8.95, July 1981, 0 631 12736 4
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... Otherwise identical with last year’s American edition, the English version has abandoned the original title, Sex by Prescription – in order, it appears, to gratify the author’s veritable passion for alliteration. He isn’t aware how lucky he is that his latest book has appeared at this particular stage in the history of our culture’s reflections on medicine – or rather, by now he is: I happen ...

Football and Music

Hans Keller

4 February 1982
The Tongs and the Bones: The Memoirs of Lord Harewood 
Weidenfeld, 334 pp., £9.95, October 1981, 0 297 77960 5Show More
Putting the Record Straight: The Autobiography of John Culshaw 
Secker, 362 pp., £8.50, November 1981, 0 436 11802 5Show More
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Mastersinger: A Documented Study 
by Kenneth Whitton.
Oswald Wolff, 342 pp., £15, December 1981, 0 85496 405 3
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... Why this reviewer for Harewood’s autobiography? Despite extreme dissimilarities, the two of us share utterly unrelated, central preoccupations – music and football, with football, too, being drawn into our professional lives. The difference is that whereas I – a born musician with an infantile passion for football – insist on the lack of relation to the extent of avoiding musical metaphors ...

Two Cup Finals

Hans Keller

4 June 1981
... It was playing for pride; now it’s money, money, money. The game belongs to the people; money doesn’t come into it with me.’ Thus Bill Shankly, ultra-professional and ultra-amateur rolled into an apparent eccentric who, in reality, is the living proof of the profound unreality of our ideas, mutually exclusive, of professionalism and amateurism. Nor need we think that he is simply hitting out ...

Truth

Hans Keller

21 February 1980
Testimony: The Memoirs of Dmitri Shostakovich 
edited by Solomon Volkov, translated by Antonina Bouis.
Hamish Hamilton, 238 pp., £7.95, October 1980, 0 241 10321 5
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... I don’t trust Mr Solomon Volkov an inch, and as for Miss Antonina Bouis, the question of trust hardly arises: Shostakovich is supposed to have said that ‘Hamlet was screwing her’ (i.e. Ophelia) in Nikolai Pavlovich Akimov’s (1901–1968) production of Hamlet which, at the time (1932), ‘was highly regarded in the American literary press’ – or so Mr Volkov informs us. On every page, the ...

Keller’s Causes

Robin Holloway

3 August 1995
Essays on Music 
by Hans Keller, edited by Christopher Wintle, Bayan Northcott and Irene Samuel.
Cambridge, 269 pp., £30, October 1994, 0 521 46216 9
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... In his heyday, from the late Forties to around the start of William Glock’s regime at the Third Programme (afterwards Radio Three), HansKeller’s vehement presence was a force for the good in English musical life. He represented at a high level old-style modern values – not exactly cosmopolitan (an important reservation to which I shall ...
5 June 1980
Fin-de-Siècle Vienna: Politics and Culture 
by Carl Schorske.
Weidenfeld, 378 pp., £15, May 1980, 0 297 77772 6
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A Nervous Splendour: Vienna 1888/1889 
by Frederic Morton.
Weidenfeld, 340 pp., £8.95, May 1980, 0 297 77769 6
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... The well-nigh drug-like fascination which Vienna has exerted upon the Western world at all emotional and intellectual levels – Johann Strauss’s as well as Arnold Schoenberg’s, the Schnitzel’s as well as Arthur Schnitzler’s and Sigmund Freud’s – was bound to result in an attempt to explain it all, or most of it, or that part of it that has a hypnotic effect on the investigator himself ...
15 October 1981
The Proms and Natural Justice: A Plan for Renewal 
by Robert Simpson.
Toccata Press, 66 pp., £1.95, July 1981, 0 907689 00 0
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The Proms and the Men Who Made Them 
by Barrie Hall.
Allen and Unwin, 192 pp., £8.95, June 1981, 0 04 780024 0
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The Nine Symphonies of Beethoven 
by Antony Hopkins.
Heinemann, 290 pp., £12.50, April 1981, 0 435 81427 3
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... Its last chapter apart – an irrelevant ‘After-thought’ whose autobiographical explosion inextricably interweaves deep historical insights with a strong composer’s inevitable prejudices – Robert Simpson’s impersonal challenge is spotlessly objective, sternly factual and, at the same time, unashamedly ethical. His scrupulous analysis of the Proms’ past yields a practical proposal as well ...

Hitler and History

Hans Keller

5 February 1981
Hitler 
by Norman Stone.
Hodder, 195 pp., £6.95, August 1980, 0 340 24980 3
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Hitler’s ‘Mein Kampf’ in Britain and America: A Publishing History 1930-39 
by James Barnes and Patience Barnes.
Cambridge, 158 pp., £8.50, September 1980, 0 521 22691 0
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The Berlin Secession: Modernism and Its Enemies in Imperial Germany 
by Peter Paret.
Harvard, 262 pp., £10.50, December 1980, 0 674 06773 8
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German Romantic Painting 
by William Vaughan.
Yale, 260 pp., £19.95, October 1980, 0 300 02387 1
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... My title is intended to be quadruply functional: the four books raise four interpenetrating problems – and not one problem per book either. That Hitler himself remains an incurable problem is proved by our civilisation’s continued, compulsive preoccupation with his personality – which a George Steiner even undertook to reinvent: his The Portage to San Cristobal of A.H. has been reviewed in these ...

Vagueness

Hans Keller

1 May 1980
Michael Tippett: An Introductory Study 
by David Matthews.
Faber, 112 pp., £5.95, December 1979, 0 571 10954 3
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Tippett and his Operas 
by Eric Walter White.
Barrie and Jenkins, 142 pp., £7.97, January 1980, 0 214 20573 8
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... Whereas clarity does not always produce clarity in its recipient, confusion invariably inspires confusion. C.G. Jung, a mind of confused genius, was a hell-send for Michael Tippett, a veritable genius of confusion – who now, celebrating the 75th year of his consistently lively life, inspires sundry confusions in his commentators, and even in those who comment on his commentators: ‘Michael Tippett’s ...

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