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January 23, 1929

Arthur Honegger, French composer-pianist and the leader of the avant-garde Le Groupe des Six, gave a recital of his own compositions. Assisting M. Honegger were his wife, the French pianist Andreé Vaurabourg and American coloratura soprano Cobina Wright. “There is little question” wrote “H.J.” in a review in The Miscellany News, “that Mr. Honegger is inspired by ideas new and very unique. The first piece, a Toccato and Variations, showed a faint suggestion of the jazz rhythms that wend their way into a great deal of modern music. There being no melody of a tuneful sort to give the listener a straw to grasp in a melee of unfamiliar harmonic progressions and combinations, the unity of the piece was hard to understand. The devices used to produce a feeling of continuity were either too subtle for perception at the first hearing, or else the material was too thin, for the piece seemed to lack the balance of well-rounded composition, although sections of it were very invigorating and fresh. Andreé Vaurabourg played it excellently.”

M. Honegger’s colleague in Le Groupe Des Six, Darius Milhaud, gave a lecture-recital of his music at Vassar in January 1923.

The Years