Jaunā Gaita Nr. 62, 1967

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JG 62

FORM AND THOUGHT IN NEW MUSIC: 1950 - 1966, Gundaris Pone, p. 6:In the last sixteen years a process of unparalleled intellectual boldness accompanied by revolutionary fervor has taken place in musical composition. Important young composers (e.g. Boulez, Stockhausen) have envisaged and successfully realized new
sound ideals as well as developed new compositional dialectics to project their artistic message. The listener, whether willing or reluctant to share their exciting discoveries, is confronted with an irreversible event: serial, electronic, and aleatory composition techniques (all developed during the fifties) are by now safe topics for historians to discuss and catalogue. As for the composers themselves, in the present decade they have transcended the discoveries of the previous one and today are largely occupied with problems of total synthesis: the exploration of expanded experiential interrelationships leading to the concepts of "sound-vision", sound-movement", "sound-theatre", etc. The new dialectics of composition have caused a profound schism between the conservative audiences and performers of „official" music and the composers of new music, who collaborate closely with specially trained interpreters and address a small, select, international audience, which has made or is willing to make the effort to understand the new forms.

THE EVOLUTION OF LATVIAN INDEPENDENCE (concl.), Uldis Ģērmanis, p. 26:
The attempt to call a democratically constituted assembly to frame a Constitution in the winter of 1917 failed because of last-minute opposition by Russian-oriented Latvian Bolsheviks. Thereafter the two main groups pressing for Latvian independence were the Democratic Bloc in Riga (still under German occupation) and the LPNP (Interim Latvian Nat'l Council, composed of artists, writers, professional men). After discussing a wide range of political possibilities in relation to Russia and Germany, the LPNP, in January 1918, came to the conclusion that Latvia must become an independent republic, comprising Kurzeme, Vidzeme and Latgale, using the principle of self-determination of peoples espoused by the western democracies as a theoretical basis for their decision. Work toward the envisaged goal could then begin.

Abstract sculpture, like abstract painting, is an illogicality, for all sculpture, even if it does not resemble an object, is itself a object: substance bounded by lasting surface planes. Transparent or translucent materials, offering special effects through the use of light, kinetic sculpture, virtual form, negative values, and combinations of textures - these modern "discoveries" are techniques known to much earlier sculpture, where they were used with appropriate restraint.

This third essay of the series begins with the assumption that, despite the fact that the Baltic States still lack friends, Latvia will again be an independent state and that work towards this end is the only meaningful work for the exile community. Of primary importance presently is a coordinated gathering of information about the exile community, ascertaining its size, whereabouts, financial condition, etc. as a preliminary step to its political organization. Such action groups as Americans for Congressional Action to Free the Baltic States and Baltic Appeal to the United Nations could then function with a much wider basis of support. Second, there should be created a Latvian Academy of Letters and Sciences which could coordinate and support all creative cultural activity, analyze social and demographic changes in the community, and maintain a comprehensive library. Third, there is urgent need to create and distribute internationally informational materials about the Baltic countries, which could contribute to the gradual eradication of this last stronghold of colonialism. Thereafter, the future of an independent Latvia is inconceivable outside a federated Europe.

"The Hungarian Wave in Lyrics," (Gunars Irbe): "I am not one of those who wish to see the people of Hungary take up arms again in a rising certain to be crushed, under the eyes of the nations of the world... But I am not one of those who think that there can be a compromise, even one made with resignation, even provisional, with a regime of terror which has as much right to call itself socialist as the executioners of the Inquisition had to call themselves Christians," Albert Camus is to have said in a speech commemorating the first anniversary of the Hungarian Revolution. An excerpt from this speech serves as an introducton to a very singular anthology of poetry GLORIA VICTIS (Tollas Tibor, ed., Gloria Victis, Nemzetör, München, 1966, 422 pp.), which includes poetry by 138 poets of 44 nationalities in original and Hungarian translation, all part of the poetic lore generated spontaneously by the 1956 October-November events in Hungary.

Among the books reviewed in this issue are the first collection of short stories and novellas by a promising young satirist, Tālivaldis Ķiķauka (The Streetcar in the Desert), who is also experimenting with surrealism and symbolism; two volumes of poetry, one by the young poet Kārlis Ābele, who lives in Australia, and the other by Ojārs Vācietis, one of the most prominent poets in Soviet Latvia; Prof. Arnolds Spekke's Balts and Slavs, essays in English on the relationships between the Balts and their Eastern neighbors in the early and late Middle Ages; and a volume of essays, published in Soviet Latvia, criticising certain trends of linguistic change there.

Jaunā Gaita