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經濟學人:古典音樂—音樂的魔術

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Books and Arts;Book Review;Classical music;Conjurors;

文藝;書評;古典音樂;音樂的魔術;

Music as Alchemy: Journeys with Great Conductors and Their Orchestras.

音樂就像點石成金——一段與偉大的指揮家和樂團的奇妙旅程。

IN “FANTASIA”, Walt Disney's 1940 film of musically inspired animations, each piece begins and ends in the same way, with the silhouetted figure of Leopold Stokowski, a British conductor who died in 1977. He stands alone against a dark red background while the mysterious movements of his hands conjure the music in and out of being. “Fantasia” was hugely popular, and made a notable contribution to cultivating a wider appreciation of classical music. But it also unwittingly peddled the still pervasive myth that conductors are, in effect, magicians—sorcerers who single-handedly extract waves of finely variegated sound out of thin air.

1940年沃特·迪士尼拍攝了音樂動畫“幻想曲”,每一段的開始和結束都是利奧波德·斯托科夫斯基的剪影。而這位英國指揮家于1977年去世。他獨站在深紅色背景前,手上的動作充滿了神秘色彩,音樂便隨著動作此起彼伏。“幻想曲”獲得了巨大的成功,并且它對古典音樂新詮釋所做出的貢獻也非同一般。但它也無意中增加了指揮家的神秘色彩,時至今日人們仍然覺得不可思議,好像他們就是魔術師——獨自一人就憑空變出變幻莫測的美妙聲音。

Tom Service, a British radio presenter and writer on classical music, has taken the mysterious business of what conductors actually do as the subject of his first book, “Music as Alchemy”. Conductors, including the ones studied in this book, have been scrutinised before, often in considerable detail. What sets Mr Service's book apart, in addition to its breezy tone and infectious, easily worn enthusiasm, is his focus on the relationship between the conductor and his or her orchestral musicians. Many hours have been spent not just in concerts given by the six conductor-orchestra pairs taken as his subject, but in observing them in the rehearsals beforehand and quizzing members of the orchestra about their side of the experience.

湯姆·瑟維斯是英國一位與古典音樂相關的電臺主持人和作家,他的第一本書《點石成金的音樂》主題就是揭開指揮家的神秘面紗。包括書中提到的每一位指揮家,都曾被詳細介紹過,而且可謂到了事無巨細的地步。但瑟維斯先生的書的特別之處不僅在于他活潑的文筆和極具感染力的熱情,還在于書中對指揮家與他們樂隊關系的解讀。作者花了大量時間,不僅探索了作為書中主人公的六位指揮家和他們樂隊的音樂會,還深入了解了他們前期的排練,“拷問”樂隊成員,從他們的角度尋找答案。

This is not a method that would pass muster in scientific inquiry—few orchestral players would be rude in print about their chief conductor—but it yields some insightful results. The reader learns, for example, that most players in the Budapest Festival Orchestra do not really mind when Ivan Fischer lays down the law, but that the players of the robustly democratic Concertgebouw Orchestra most certainly do. Mr Service finds that the London Symphony Orchestra see the benefit of Valery Gergiev's high-octane, “everything will be all right on the night” attitude, but that the Berlin Philharmonic rely on a slightly more thorough approach from Sir Simon Rattle.

這種方法并不是科學調查方法——幾乎沒有樂隊成員會在書中對他們的指揮發牢騷——但同樣也能獲得一些極富洞察力的結果。譬如,讀者通過本書會了解到,有些布達佩斯節日樂團的成員就不介意他們的指揮伊萬·費舍爾發號施令。但相反,皇家樂團的成員就強烈要求民主,不會接受個人號令。瑟維斯先生發現倫敦交響樂團得益于瓦列里·格吉耶夫的高強度風格,堅信“晚上開場前一切都能就緒”,但柏林愛樂樂團就更加青睞西蒙·拉特爾那種略微周密的做事方法。

The interviews with the conductors themselves, awkwardly woven into the narrative as full transcripts, are not particularly rewarding. The book's strength is in its mix of stories and perspectives, which ably convey the murky process by which orchestras and conductors build a bond of mutual trust.

指揮家的專訪只是編成文字記錄一般的敘述,了無趣味,所以沒什么特別的價值。本書的長處在于書中不乏故事和觀點,巧妙地敘述了樂隊成員和指揮如何建立起相互信任的神秘過程。

The most illuminating chapter is perhaps the final one, about the relationship between Claudio Abbado and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra. Famously reticent, Mr Abbado gives little away himself, but his players say it all for him—a fine confirmation of his gifts as a conductor. He is special, the musicians explain, not merely because of his clarity of vision, authoritative analysis or the mysterious energy of his gestures, but rather because of the way he listens. He appears to live the music, inviting them to live it with him.

書中最出彩的一章大概就屬最后一章了,描寫了克勞迪奧·阿巴多與琉森節慶管弦樂團。阿巴多先生沉默少語是出了名的,所以他自己并沒有多說什么,但他的樂團成員完全代勞——成為他指揮天賦的最佳證明。成員都說他不一般,不僅是因為他有敏銳的洞察力、權威的闡釋和充滿神秘力量的手勢,而是因為他聆聽音樂的獨到之法。他能喚醒音樂,并邀請音樂伴他左右。

Players need to believe conductors understand what they are doing, and that their individual efforts make a difference. Conductors, in turn, need to trust their orchestras to do everything possible to make the music happen in the moment. The currency of this trust is listening, and one of the most interesting pictures to emerge from the book is that of the conductor as a kind of chief listener. Hand gestures, whether the baton-traced polygons of the textbooks or the mysterious finger-flickerings of Mr Gergiev and Mr Abbado, are construed less as specific directions than as signs of a kind of ultra-responsive listening, a listening which feeds back into how the players hear each other.

演奏者要相信他們的指揮知曉他們的一舉一動,也明白他們每個人的努力都舉足輕重。同樣,指揮家也要相信他的演奏者一定會讓演奏毫無差錯。信任源自傾聽,而指揮更像是首席聽眾,這是書中傳達出的最有趣的一點。不論是課本里用指揮棒劃出的多邊形,還是格吉耶夫先生和阿巴多先生指尖迸出的不可思議的弧度,指揮家的手勢都不僅僅是特殊的提示,而是一種無需回應的聆聽,只需演奏者相互聆聽就夠了。

As the book's title suggests, it may indeed be most appropriate to think of this listening process as a kind of magic. But if so, it is a magic that comes through dedication, not sorcery.

就像書名一樣,我們的確應該把這種聆聽過程視為魔術。就真是魔術,也是表演者們盡心奉獻變成的魔法,不會有什么法術。

重點單詞   查看全部解釋    
tone [təun]

想一想再看

n. 音調,語氣,品質,調子,色調
vt. 使

 
inspired [in'spaiəd]

想一想再看

adj. 有創見的,有靈感的

聯想記憶
contribution [.kɔntri'bju:ʃən]

想一想再看

n. 貢獻,捐款(贈)

 
extract ['ekstrækt,iks'trækt]

想一想再看

n. 榨出物,精華,摘錄
vt. 拔出,榨出,

聯想記憶
muster ['mʌstə]

想一想再看

v. 集合,收集,鼓起,激起
n. 集合,檢閱

 
presenter [pri'zentə]

想一想再看

n. 主持人,提出者,呈獻者,

 
clarity ['klæriti]

想一想再看

n. 清楚,透明

 
bond [bɔnd]

想一想再看

n. 債券,結合,粘結劑,粘合劑
vt. 使結

 
thorough ['θʌrə]

想一想再看

adj. 徹底的,完全的,詳盡的,精心的

 
pervasive [pə:'veisiv]

想一想再看

adj. 普遍的,蔓延的,滲透的

聯想記憶
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