Today, eight years ago, Karlheinz Stockhausen died. I am interested to hear from people here their thoughts on how his music and legacy is now traveling. Despite my middle-aged status, I really developed a passion for Stockhausen's music very late - although I had listened to some, and admired it, for a long time. But it is only over the past five or six years that I have really learned how extraordinary it is, maybe not least because of the other music that had distracted me earlier and, in that distraction, helped me understand even more the magnitude and significance of Stockhausen's achievements.
I never met him and this year was my first visit to Kürten. And even though I now listen to his music daily and intently, and even though now I put every available moment of my life into studying and understanding his music more deeply, I know that I am still only scratching a surface of something that many of you here in this forum know much more intimately than I do. Hence my interest in your thoughts on where his music is at now, eight years after his passing.
My own perception is that it is faring very well, and this was echoed to me by both Suzanne Stephens and Kathinka Pasveer when I interviewed them in Kürten for my radio show. I see it myself in the enormous, even fervent, enthusiasm that his music seems to inspire in almost everyone who performs it - in their profound eagerness to understand how to perform it well, and how to honour the huge task Stockhausen seemed to set in almost everything he wrote: conveying in music the connection between the atomic and the cosmic, between the human and the spiritual. His music seems to me to be in the hands of a new, emerging generation who still want to learn from the people who lived and worked alongside Stockhausen. It seems a vibrant legacy that will continue to yield very much.
I feel that it could be useful to have a discussion-forum on the music of Stockhausen. There are so many people from all over the world, young and old, learned and eager to get into contact with this musical world: musicologists, composers, musicians, music lovers; people who plan concerts - who write books or have to give lectures and so on. So there should be much stuff, many ideas that we can share. And when we have open questions, there may be people who studied just that and could give a hint or a stimulus.
A problem might be the English language, but i feel that is the only possibility that many people who are interested can participate. And we can exercise tolerance to mistakes!