Lot 185
  • 185

Schnittke, Alfred

4,000 - 6,000 GBP
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  • Schnittke, Alfred
  • Autograph graphic score of the "Cantus perpetuus", signed by the composer on the title, ("A. Schnittke")
  • paper
notated in black ink on the inner two leaves of a bifolium, the theme notated on a single stave at the upper right-hand side of the manuscript, the body of the manuscript consisting of a geometric arrangement of twelve 35-note segments on two-stave systems, enclosed by, and containing at the centre of the notation, geometric patterns in five colours (brown, red, green, blue and yellow), the bar lines contained within the pattern written in pencil, with an autograph title, signed and dated by the composer ("A. Schnittke Cantus perpetuus 1973/75"), some erased notes in the lowest segment covered by a tiny strip of manuscript paper with apparently hand-drawn stave lines

2 pages plus autograph title, 4to (31.1 x 24.4cm), 18-stave paper, no place, 1973-1975, light creasing to corners and along hinge, splitting very slightly at hinge, tiny tear to upper margin of second leaf of bifolium


Alfred Schnittke (Hamburg: Sikorski Musikverlage, 2004), p.53

Catalogue Note

The work exists only in this striking graphic score form, and is open to various interpretations by the performers. Schnittke himself viewed the interpretation by Mark Pekarsky and his ensemble at the Moscow world premiere (14 December 1975) as the definitive version, but this cannot be fully reconstructed. The inner four lines are numbered variously, for each segment, from '1' to '12', a code for the red, green, blue and yellow lines provided by the composer, in Russian, at the upper left-hand side of the manuscript (respectively: "Polifonya", "Melodiya", "Ritm" and "Garmonia").