Arno Schmidt

Halt’s Maul und mach was

Arno Schmidt was not exactly a fan of new music. He dismissed a cello composition by Penderecki, for example, by stating that it was »like something written by a technician out of his wits for technicians out of their wits.« He nevertheless conceded that he »understood little« about music. This did not keep composers, however, from being inspired time and again by Schmidt’s texts, whether by setting passages from his works or by developing forms and structures in which they saw parallels to Schmidt’s prose constructions. What is it about Arno Schmidt that appeals to musicians? His fine feeling for sentence rhythms and vocal tone colors will surely play a role here; those who once heard Schmidt read or have read aloud a text by him on their own will have noticed the musicality of his language. In 2007 the Arno Schmidt Foundation issued a compositional commission: some composers were given a number of sharply pointed statements by Schmidt from which each selected three quotations to set to music. An adventure for the ears!

Andrea L. Scartazzini (*1971)
Nachttief und Mond 4’18

Michael Reudenbach (*1956)
… Zitate, Berührungen… 7’54

Robert HP Platz (* 1951)
Boutaden 1 -5 13’28

Horst Lohse (* 1943)
A Schmidts Monde, Métaphores lunaires 15’04

Matthias Kaul (*1949)
Resonanzen für A.S. 3 ’55

Thomas Desi (*1967)
Drei Butaden 3’08

Eric Verbugt (*1966)
Bilder (aus dem Novecento) 12’07

Eckart Beinke (*1956)
Trois Boutades 8’00

Denis Lakey, Countertenor
oh ton-ensemble
Benjamin Lang, Dirigat


Photo © by Arno Schmidt Stiftung, Bargfeld

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