Budapest and Vienna

“Schoenbrunn Palace in Vienna,” 1936, black-and-white photo. © SZ Photo/Scherl/Bridgeman Images

Encounter III

Budapest and Vienna

One reigned for two centuries as the undisputed capital of Western music, nourishing composers from Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven to Schoenberg, Webern, and Berg. The other rose to prominence on a nationalist wave fueled by the groundbreaking work of Bartók, Kodály, and others. Despite their close proximity and cultural kinship, Vienna and Budapest and their musical histories offer a tale of two cities, separated by tradition and aesthetic. Scholar John R. Hale makes his Music@Menlo debut, leading the season’s final Encounter—an engrossing exploration of these two enchanting Central European capitals.