Igor Stravinsky

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“Five things go to make a man, and Stravinsky is all of them”

~ Jean-Paul Sartre on Igor Stravinsky

“We all scream for more Smirnoff”

~ Igor Stravinsky on Ice Cream

“No Mr. Bond; I expect you to play in 7/8, then 2/4, then 3/8, then 9/16, then 1/1, then 17/4.”

A typical composition by Igor Stravinsky.

Igor Frookorpdyichnykov "Why does this 'music' even have a key signature?!" Stravinsky (pronounced Eeyore ƒŕőōŷæųþſΏΏΏ Straw-een`-sky) (June 17, 1882–April 6, 1971) was a Basque-born philosopher, American attorney, scullery maid, philanthropist, misanthropist, part-time goat charmer, and, in his septuagenarian years, a professional mercenary. He is most known for being an attorney, where he pioneered the Carte Blanche Rule and fought many cases in the Supreme Court, slaying three of his opponents in the tie-breaking sudden death round.

Igor Stravinsky as rendered by the artist C.X. Picasso.

Early years: scandal and success[edit]

Igor Fyodoro[...]vytch Stravinsky was born in Rhineophobia, Basqueland on June 17, 1882, the bastard child of opera singer Carolus Linnaeus Species and his resident landlady Casserola Gena. His uneventful childhood involved much tedious stringing along of sentences, trying vaguely to set the scene for the interesting bits, but failing. Stravinsky was not particularly good at anything, especially not music, and it was only at the behest of his then father that he began taking lessons with Rimsky-Korsakov at the St. Petersburg Music, Craoyla and Toe-Dancing Factory. His interests lay in the law profession, however, and he swiftly ended his tutelage by composing the Symphony in E-flat, surely the greatest insult Rimsky-Korsakov had ever suffered.

Aged 18, Stavinsky met and eloped with Robert Craft to Belgium, where within a year they had fathered two healthy young cigarettes, Claude and Hyman Cravinsky. Alas, the duplicitous Stravinsky soon abandoned his husband (not for the last time) and his two cigarettes to move to Paris, where, on the following day, he joined the circus and had an affair with Coco Chanel. In Paris, he pursued two unusual hobbies; hobnobbing with famous types and model-building. His breakthrough came in 1913 with a bizarre model entitled Le Sacré du printemps, which consisted entirely of shards of orchestral textures jammed into uncomfortable ostinato configurations. At its premier the model caused a huge scandal, owing primarily to pieces of the thing falling off and lancing the spectators. By a twist of logic, Stravinsky was then incoronated as the Grande Chef de Merde by the rapturous avant-garde, which position he maintained until creative cramp forced him to step down.

Stravinsky and Craft: Attorneys @ Law[edit]

Following his resignation, and his move to America (due to the alarming price hike on French Pop-tarts), Stravinsky turned to his first love, the gentler arts of soliciting, bribing and being a lawyer. During this time, he reformed his fellowship with estranged husband, Craft, and, afer a brief enforced conversion course, made him a partner in the Supreme Court inc. venture. As we all know, this venture went disastrously wrong, and Stravinsky and Craft were sued by the executive division of the Federal government for failing to pervert the course of justice. Now, at rock bottom, Stravinsky began to compose some of his most exhilirating works; Death in Venice, Aïda, Der Rosenkavalier, Il Barbiere di Siviglia, and Das Wohl-Tempierte Clavier, among others. He also procured the patronage of one Lady Countess Robert Woods Bliss Esq., of whom he was noted as having quipped "elle est sourde, mais elle paye" (lit. she's deaf, but that won't stop me). This fruitful partnership resulted in commissions for a TV series (Dagmar the Elephant, later abandoned), four semi-autobiographical novellas (My Time in Space), and an enticing range of sportswear...

Igor conducts one of his compositions for the Ballet Russe, "La bosse de la fée" (The Hump of the Fairy)

Death and Posthumous Reception[edit]

Stravinsky dissolved the Stravinsky and Craft partnership five years before his death. His reactions to this no-doubt traumatic event are forever immortalised in Craft's book Stravinsky, why won't you look at me? or How I knew Him and probably you didn't (1978), and need no further discussion here. Stravinsky's final years were taken up with composing a new range of commodious works, now known to professional music-labellers as forming his Cerealist Phase. Included herewithin are the Grosse Fuge, Daphnis et Chloë, Messe in B-Moll, Atmosphères, and the Pop Tart Canticles, a rich work of resounding originality and ubiquity. After passing away, Stravinsky was interred at Fargo, ND, where his monument can be seen.

Since his death, Stravinsky has been practically labelled out of existence by music-labellers. This is seen by some symptom-seers as a symptom of his polystylism, which encompassed three distinct phases: the Basque (Nationalist) Phase (up to 1914 or so), the Plagarist Phase (1914-1955) and the Cerealist Phase (1955-). Of course, these labels achieve nothing on their own, and are often accompanied by loud-voiced philosophical declamations, which raise their relevance ever-so-slightly above zero. The conclusion is that Stravinsky was and is just too deep for mere man-brains. No doubt in the future, hyperhumans will finally comprehend what he was going on about with his music, not care at all, and get back to conquering the universe in their shiny spaceships.

Though, there are those who do understand his music...does that make them the present hyperhumans? No.

Famous Works[edit]

  • The Rights of Spring, his most controversial work as an attorney
  • The Soldier's Tail or L'Histoire du Sold That, a case on the selling of confidential military information from a soldier with a tail.
  • The Rape's Progress, another profound work during his attorney life
  • Agony - Obvious - A Polo (Evidence is presented in this lawsuit of 3 ballets)
  • The Hire Bird, a shocking work on commercial sexual workers
  • The Night in Jail, a Chinese emperor locks a bird in jail
  • A Prosecution, A Confession, and A Verdict
  • Dumb Barton Blokes, a criminological study on barton blokes
  • Symphony in Three Moves, a pedagogical work on how to win lawsuits in three steps
  • Symphony of No Psalms, a work stressing the separation of church and attorneys
  • Fireworks, a study on pyromaniacs
  • The Firebird, a work describing Igor's childhood happiness with fire.

See also[edit]

Drunk Russian Composers
Modest Mussorgsky | Sergei Prokofiev | Sergei Rachmaninoff | Dmitri Shostakovich | Igor Stravinsky | Pyotr Tchaikovsky
Horrible Modern Composers
Igor Stravinsky | Paul Hindemith | Sergei Prokofiev | Anton Webern | Arnold Schoenberg | Béla Bartók | John Cage | Charles Ives | Philip Glass | Steve Reich