“Every great inspiration is but an experiment.”

Charles Ives

Unconscious bursts of creativity that engender significant artistic endeavors are not necessarily inspired by passionate romantic love alone. Greek mythology believed that this kind of stimulus came from nine muses, the inspirational goddesses of literature, science, and the arts. Muses were long considered the source of knowledge embodied in poetry, lyric songs and ancient myths. Throughout the history of Western art, artists, writers and musicians have prayed to the muses, or alternately, drawn inspiration from personified muses that conceptually reside beyond the borders of earthly love. True to life, however, composer inspiration has emerged from the entire spectrums of existence and being. Nature has always played a decidedly important role in the inspiration of various classical composers, as did exotic cities, landscapes or rituals. Composer inspiration is also found in poetry, the visual arts, and mythological stories and tales. Artistic, historical or cultural expressions of the past are just as inspirational as is the everyday: the third Punic War or the contrapuntal mastery of Bach is inspirationally just as relevant as are the virulent bat and camel. Composer inspiration is delightfully drawn from heroes and villains, scientific advances, a pet, or something as mundane as a hangover. Discover what fires the imagination of people who never stop asking questions.

835 Posts
  • Tracing the Influences: Schubert to García Lorca to Crumb Tracing the Influences: Schubert to García Lorca to Crumb
    George Crumb: Madrigals, Book II and Songs, Drones and Refrains of Death Franz Schubert’s hair-raising setting of Goethe’s poem about a father with an ailing child in his arms, racing towards help but being thwarted by the illusions of the
  • Maurice Ravel and His Circle of Friends Maurice Ravel and His Circle of Friends
    How private was Maurice Ravel’s private life? Well, to this day nobody has uncovered conclusive evidence that he ever had a sexual relationship. While his music is passionate and distinctive, Ravel’s personality remains mysterious. His friend and biographer Alexis Roland-Manuel
  • Spiders Music Spiders Music
    We hate them and we love them – they can make us jump up in fright just as much as we can admire their filigree webs. Composers have spiders in their music and we end up with a marvelous variety
  • Domestic Animal of the Year 2022: Donkey Domestic Animal of the Year 2022: Donkey
    The German group Bündnis Mensch & Tier (Alliance for Humans and Animals) has chosen its Pet of the Year: The Donkey. The group points out all the benefits of the alliance between donkeys and humans and closes with the thought:
  • Frog Music Frog Music
    Of all the water animals, the frog appears most often in music. Most of the time it’s for its repetitive and rhythmic sound, but sometimes, particularly in vocal music, as a representative of various human characteristics, most often envy of