It is worth pausing for a moment and asking how music speaks ideas. Shostakovich said,

For a long time, the Soviets said the music meant one thing, the Americans said it meant something else — and a few lonely souls (Igor Stravinsky among them) complained that music really should mean nothing at all.

Which Shostakovich do we believe? The early Shostakovich or the late Shostakovich?

We can trust no one. In a regime where words are watched, lies are rewarded, and silence is survival, there is no truth.

–M.T. Anderson Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege of Leningrad


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