On the day of Hitler’s suicide, a squad of American soldiers found themselves face to face with the eighty-year-old composer and conductor Richard Strauss. Alex Ross reflects on the story of the encounter: http://nyr.kr/UqKUES
“Why do I find these tales mesmerizing? Perhaps it has to do with the awkward relationship that any child of the postwar American empire has with the old European colossus of classical music. No matter how deeply we bow before it, we feel like intruders, pulling into the driveways of the great composers and threatening them with eviction.”
Photograph by AP.