Robert Craft: Author

Following the more than a dozen books he has written about and--some of them--with Igor Stravinsky, Craft's revised and expanded edition of Chronicle of a Friendship is now in paperback edition from Vanderbilt University Press.

The Moment of Existence, published by Vanderbilt Press, brings to the reader glimpses, insights, and first-hand historical contexts whether the subject is Mozart, the novels of Thomas Bernhard, the Italian Renaissance frescoists, or Balanchine Ballet. Robert Craft has also published five books of conversations and commentaries together with Igor Stravinsky, translated and annotated three volumes of Stravinsky correspondence, and four books of Stravinsky photographs and documents.

Craft has published five additional volumes of essays, including his Small Craft Advisories and Stravinsky: Glimpses of a Life. A new book of his travel writings entitled Places takes Craft through Nepal, North Africa, Russia, and Southern Italy and is now available in the fall of 2000 from Thames and Hudson. In the Fall of 2002 Robert Craft released a long-awaited book entitled An Improbable Life: Memoirs.

It begins with the author's childhood in Kingston, New York, his time in the New York Military Academy prep school in Cornwall-on-Hudson, and his entry into Juilliard, cut short by Army service. Soon Craft's musical activities lead him into his relationship with Stravinsky in Hollywood, New York, and elsewhere, all richly documented by Stravinsky's letters in the "Dear Bobsky" section of the book.

His improbable life becomes a whirlwind of international activity at the cutting edge of modern music (and revival of early music) and in the company of celebrities. By letter or in person, figures like Edwin Hubble, Aldous Huxley, Stephen Spender, T. S. Eliot, W. H. Auden, Pierre Boulez, Elliott Carter, and George Balanchine make their appearances. A whole chapter recreates, through Isaiah Berlin's letters to the author, the texture of the relationship between Stravinsky and Isaiah Berlin that began in London in December 1956 and led to Sir Isaiah's transliteration of the text of Abraham and Isaac for Stravinsky.

In the section of the book entitled "Surviving the Legacy," Craft recounts, with his special flair for describing places and personalities, the adventures of the decades since the 1970s. He and his wife, Alva, continue to this day their heavy schedule of international performance and exploration.

Books by Robert Craft

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