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The The Question of the Meaning and
Purpose of Life

PETER HÜBNER: Apart from the so-called orchestra version with an integrated electronic part, there is also a purely electronic version. I called this electronic opera “Causality”, because if we assume that causality is the relationship between cause and effect, and if we assume that cause and effect are dependent on each other, then this principle of polar dependency can be found in many different ways and at many different levels in the opera “Curse or blessing: yes”.

JOURNALIST: So, “Curse or blessing: yes” and “Causality” is the orchestra version as well as the electronic version of one and the same opera?!

PETER HÜBNER: Yes, that’s right.

JOURNALIST: Your very critical musical work “Energy I”, “Belated Romanticism”***, “Song of an automobile” and “Individual I”, fall into this creative period of the musical-human evolution in “Curse or blessing: yes” and/or “Causality”

You as the composer of “Curse or blessing: yes” and/or “Causality” and the other work mentioned, are not somebody to have studied the outer craft of composing as best as you could according to a certain mould at a music college, but you are a 100% autodidact, and have always, right from the beginning, only drawn on yourself.

May we conclude from this, that this critical creative period is the development of a world-view which took place in your inner being between 1958 and 1966: did you experience and live through this work in your inner and outer life?

And the question also arises whether this philosophical-ethical development or the musical development should be given priority.

PETER HÜBNER: Without doubt, the development of an inner musical idea has a structural influence on the development of general thinking and therefore also on the development of philosophical or ethical thinking.

And if we assume that in “Curse or blessing: yes” the musical development from unity frees itself systematically from all norms and takes the direction towards diversity, finally ending in unity again, then it is only understandable if this process of musical liberation is to be found in the plot-structure of this piece of work: in the role of the main character Kchatom.

JOURNALIST: With “Curse or blessing: yes” you open step by step and increasingly purposeful those doors of free musical design for the musicians of classical orchestra, as only the musicians of free-jazz have known so far, and you do the same for the director, for the stage designer, and for all the actors who strive for freedom.

Great opera directors such as Oscar Fritz Schuh, manager and artistic director of the “Deutsches Schauspielhaus” (German theatre) in Hamburg, and Harry Buckwitz, president of the German Academy for Performing Arts Frankfurt, and artistic director of the “Staedtische Buehnen” (municipal theatre) Frankfurt, threw their weight behind this work after it had been completed in order for it to be realised.
The publishers Schott & Soehne in Mainz wanted to take care of the distribution of this work.

PETER HÜBNER: But my talks with well-known contemporary new tone conductors of the late mid 20ieth century revealed that, on the musical side, the “interpreter” was not prepared for such a complex of themes taking place in the inner being about the meaning and purpose of human existence.

In this respect, the directors advised me not to choose musically-miseducated performers for the realisation of this piece — but how should an opera have been staged without the experts from the field of music?!

JOURNALIST: Probably this was the reason why you dropped the idea of a performance for the time-being, and got down to another piece for the stage: “Song of life”.

PETER HÜBNER: In this new musical epos “Song of life”, I then build upon Kchatom’s higher world-view, and based on this new viewpoint of knowledge, give serious thought to the meaning, aim and purpose of the world as well as to the role of the builder — only that this world is no longer the exterior world — the well-known ecology, as well as that outer striving for “perfection” or better: for the destruction of this outer world —, but the inner human world of free will and creative imagination.




  Avant Garde Music                                            continued 21