As I was reading Charles Rosen’s The Romantic Generation this weekend in preparation for starting a new chapter on the theological repercussions of romantic music, I was struck by how similar his writing is to that of theologians writing about music. OK, so there were many (interesting) musical examples and analyses that are often lacking in theological discussions, but the principle of the discussion was the same.
It is a search for meaning in the music. This applies to both theologians and musicologists. When they write their books, they are searching for meaning in the music. Not a private, personal meaning, but a sort of universal truth.
A painter paints pictures on canvas. But musicians paint their pictures on silence. – Leopold Stokowski