Somehow this marking found its way into Stravinsky’s Concerto for Two Pianos, making a mockery of Stravinsky’s carefully worked-out musical theories.

Dear Dr. Boli: I just ran across this quotation from Igor Stravinsky: “I consider that music is, by its very nature, essentially powerless to express anything at all, whether a feeling, an attitude of mind, or psychological mood, a phenomenon of nature, etc.” What did he mean by that? —Sincerely, Manfred Honeck.

Dear sir: He meant that music is by nature incapable of being played in a manner that could be described as accarezzevole, affannato, affetuoso, amabile, con amore, appassionato, doloroso, drammatico, espressivo, feroce, con fuoco, furioso, gaudioso, giocoso, impetuoso, lacrimoso, lusingando, melancolico, misterioso, rilassato, scherzando, serioso, sospirando, or tranquillo. When Stravinsky saw any of those markings in a score, he became molto agitato.