The cardinal rule for the Musikverein
To work its power, myth must and will be spoken. It requires the word – which it received, in 1831, from the renowned Austrian writer Franz Grillparzer. The Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Vienna took possession of its first home, and Grillparzer joined the opening celebration with a “song of consecration”. The power of music would be demonstrated, once again as a power capable of working wonders. Grillparzer conjured up the presence of myth and summoned the appearance of the “ancient favourite of the Gods” Amphion, who knew how to play the lyre with such bewitching charm that the stones would move by themselves to participate in the building of Thebes. Grillparzer identifies the message in mythical history thus:
“Denn des Wohllauts Band umschlinget / For the melodious sound embraces
Aller Wesen tiefstes Sein, / deepest essence of all being
Was aus vollem Herzen klinget / Music coming from the heart
Trifft ein Herz in jedem Stein. / finds a heart in every stone."
He understood the distance, speaking of ancient times, and yet – as he made audiences aware – the connection was a current one and of vital significance:
“Von der Götter selgem Glücke / From the blessed grace of Gods
Geht zu Menschen noch die Brücke, / stretches bridge to humankind
und als Botin, ewig jung, / and as a herald, ever young
Wandelst du, Begeisterung! / walkest thou, inspired delight!”
In this conclusion is contained the cardinal rule for the Musikverein for all times: it is inspired delight that summons mythology into history.