Friedrich Nietzsche, The Wanderer and His Shadow (Der Wanderer und sein Schatten).

The Wanderer and his Shadow, the second supplement to Human, All Too Human, first published in 1880.

  

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Previous Section   156. MODERN MUSICAL EXECUTION   Next Section

Modern Musical Execution.  Great tragic or dramatic execution of music acquires its character by imitating the gesture of the great sinner, such as Christianity conceives and desires him: the slow stepping, passionately brooding man, distracted by the agonies of conscience, now flying in terror, now clutching with delight, now standing still in despair — and all the other marks of great sinfulness.  Only on the Christian assumption that all men are great sinners and do nothing but sin could we justify the application of this style of execution to all music.  So far, music would be the reflection of all the actions and impulses of man, and would continually have to express by gestures the language of the great sinner.  At such a performance, a listener who was not enough of a Christian to understand this logic might indeed cry out in horror, "For the love of Heaven, how did sin find its way into music"?  
 

Friedrich Nietzsche, "Ecce Homo" Ebook

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