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Saturday Letters

Stravinsky vs. Schoenberg

April 06, 2002

Now that the Philharmonic's Schoenberg Prism is completed ("Oh, So Close to Being Transfigured," by Mark Swed, March 26), I could not help but compare it to the Philharmonic's Stravinsky Festival in trying to sum up both seminal composers of the 20th century who lived here for many years.

Stravinsky in Los Angeles was more like the bright sun and bright lights of the city, and, like Hollywood, attracted a great deal of celebrity. He does have a star on the Walk of Fame at Hollywood and Wilcox.

Schoenberg, on the other hand, was more like a large-magnitude earthquake. When it strikes, it seizes everyone's attention, it wreaks havoc with the existing order and its repercussions are felt for a long time afterward.

MATTHEW HETZ

Los Angeles

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