Is it possible to think about music without a system - without a system that is foreign to it, that is? This question runs through the whole of this volume, which brings together a wide range of writings on music: essays, lectures, articles, contributions to symposia, program notes, musicological fictions and testimonies.
"Music begins where words cease to produce meaning. As the language of passions, it reveals intimate dramaturgy and inner landscapes. So how can we account for it without reducing it to a marvellous formal system, superior in this respect to many mathematical, logical or physical constructions?
My reflections are manifold, but often revolve around the same binary oppositions: pure/impure, written/improvised, scholarly/popular, dramaturgy/cinematism, modernity/tradition. Since my early days, I've never ceased to approach these antagonisms in order to synthesize them in a renewed musical language. One of my constant themes remains the sometimes ferocious, often inventive opposition between musica speculativa and musica practica," writes the author.