The most recommended books about Igor Stravinsky

Who picked these books? Meet our 9 experts.

9 authors created a book list connected to Igor Stravinsky, and here are their favorite Igor Stravinsky books.
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Stravinsky's Lunch

By Drusilla Modjeska,

Book cover of Stravinsky's Lunch

Fiona Sampson Author Of Two-Way Mirror: The Life of Elizabeth Barrett Browning

From the list on literary biographies.

Who am I?

Fiona Sampson is a leading British poet and writer, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, awarded an MBE for services to literature. Published in thirty-seven languages, she’s the recipient of numerous national and international awards. Her twenty-eight books include the critically acclaimed In Search of Mary Shelley, and Two-Way Mirror: The life of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, and she’s Emeritus Professor of Poetry, University of Roehampton.

Fiona's book list on literary biographies

Why did Fiona love this book?

Drusilla Modjeska’s Stravinsky’s Lunch is an absolutely original study of art and life. Its starting and finishing points are the contrasting lives of two major Australian artists, Stella Bowen and Grace Cossington, born twelve months apart in the 1890s. Don’t be put off if you’ve never heard of them (though their work is wonderful). This brilliant book involves its author – and even the reader – in an untricksy but radical look at the self who makes.

By Drusilla Modjeska,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Stravinsky's Lunch as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A moving, deeply insightful study of two artists-both twentieth-century Australian women-who lived and worked in divergent realms

Drusilla Modjeska's title derives from an anecdote about the composer who, while creating a piece of music, ordered his family to remain silent while taking a meal with him-so Stravinsky could preserve his concentration on his work. Modjeska's book investigates the life patterns of women artists, most of whom have been unable to manage such a neat compartmentalization of daily life and creativity.

Stravinsky's Lunch tells the stories of two extraordinary women, both born close to the turn of the century in Australia…

The Dead Ladies Project

By Jessa Crispin,

Book cover of The Dead Ladies Project: Exiles, Expats, and Ex-Countries

Hillary S. Webb Author Of The Friendliest Place in the Universe: Love, Laughter, and Stand-Up Comedy in Berlin

From the list on deliciously out-of-the-box memoirs by women.

Who am I?

I’m a cultural anthropologist with a passion for exploring how we humans make meaning of the wonderful, terrible, startling, often-absurd existence in which we find ourselves. My research has taken me from NYC’s underground occult scene to the conflict-resolution strategies of Central Peru; from circus performers in Portland, Maine, grappling with their physical potential, to a comedy club in Berlin where I set out to discover the secret sauce for evoking “collective joy” amongst strangers. I am drawn to artistic works that mix genres and defy categorization… and thus have a penchant for alienating editors, librarians, and bookstore owners who struggle to identify on which shelf my books belong. 

Hillary's book list on deliciously out-of-the-box memoirs by women

Why did Hillary love this book?

The Dead Ladies Project follows Crispin’s inner and outer journey across Europe following her suicide attempt. As a way of trying to make sense of her own fragile condition, Crispin researches the lives of other artists who also fled abroad in order to find themselves. 

I first read The Dead Ladies Project while researching my own hybrid memoir. It was a revelation and an inspiration, this elegant weaving of Crispin’s personal story with the stories of those she imagines traveled a similar path as herself, both geographically and emotionally. 

At this time of overly curated, highly sanitized social media depictions of our lives, Crispin’s unflinching humanity is not just brave, but like water poured on arid soil.

By Jessa Crispin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Dead Ladies Project as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When Jessa Crispin was thirty, she burned her settled Chicago life to the ground and took off for Berlin with a pair of suitcases and no plan beyond leaving. Half a decade later, she's still on the road, in search not so much of a home as of understanding, a way of being in the world that demands neither constant struggle nor complete surrender. The Dead Ladies Project is an account of that journey-but it's also much, much more. Fascinated by exile, Crispin travels an itinerary of key locations in its literary map, of places that have drawn writers who…

Creating Minds

By Howard E. Gardner,

Book cover of Creating Minds: An Anatomy of Creativity Seen Through the Lives of Freud, Einstein, Picasso, Stravinsky, Eliot, Graham, and Ghandi

Stephen P. Ramocki Author Of Teaching Creativity in Marketing and Business Education: A Concise Compilation of Concepts and Methodologies that Will Increase Students' Creativity

From the list on creativity in marketing and business education.

Who am I?

 I have studied creativity for 40 years and, along with the textbook I wrote, I am continually teaching my marketing students how to become more creative.  I have unequivocally demonstrated that everyone who wants to become more creative can do so with the appropriate tutelage.  This is why I get so much satisfaction from teaching creativity and it is why I wrote my book that I am highlighting here.

Stephen's book list on creativity in marketing and business education

Why did Stephen love this book?

This book fascinated me because it looks at creative accomplishments through the eyes and behaviors of many of the truly creative people who have graced our planet. The book discusses what made Albert Einstein so creative and how Sigmund Freud became the father of modern psychology. I came to realize that artists like Pablo Picasso, dancers like Martha Graham, and musicians like Igor Stravinsky broke the molds as they ventured forth into novel domains and areas where others had not yet dared to tread. I also learned that personalities are very relevant to many of these creative accomplishments and that many of these personalities do not fit kindly into what societies expect. It’s not that we should attempt to emulate these personalities but that we should feel comfortable leading with our most creative thoughts and actions.

By Howard E. Gardner,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Creating Minds as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Since it was first published in 1993, Creating Minds has served as a peerless guide to the creative self. Now available as a paperback reissue with a new introduction by the author, the book uses portraits of seven extraordinary individuals to reveal the patterns that drive the creative process,and to demonstrate how circumstance also plays an indispensable role in creative success.

Daily Rituals

By Mason Currey (editor),

Book cover of Daily Rituals: How Artists Work

Fumio Sasaki Author Of Hello, Habits: A Minimalist's Guide to a Better Life

From the list on harnessing the power of habits.

Who am I?

When I became a minimalist, I found that having less made my household chores so much easier. Before then, I thought I was a loser who lets dirty dishes and laundry pile up. But when my environment changed, what I had believed was my personality also shifted. Once my apartment was tidy, it became a habit to do the dishes right away and vacuum the floor before going out, and my life became consistently enjoyable. But other habits were harder nuts to crack, like quitting drinking or exercising regularly. In Hello, Habits I write about my journey of acquiring these habits through a process of trial and error.

Fumio's book list on harnessing the power of habits

Why did Fumio love this book?

This book summarizes the habits of 161 famous geniuses—authors, musicians, philosophers, and more. When we think of someone who’s a genius, we tend to imagine someone living a very eccentric life. But according to this book, many geniuses actually spend their days in a very regular, disciplined manner: they wake up early, get their work done in the morning, take a nap, and go for a walk. (Of course, some of them do live an eccentric life, like Marcel Proust.) As it turns out, people become geniuses not by waiting for inspiration to randomly strike, but by developing good working habits and devoting time to their work every day.

By Mason Currey (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Daily Rituals as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

More than 150 inspired—and inspiring—novelists, poets, playwrights, painters, philosophers, scientists, and mathematicians on how they subtly maneuver the many (self-inflicted) obstacles and (self-imposed) daily rituals to get done the work they love to do.

Franz Kafka, frustrated with his living quarters and day job, wrote in a letter to Felice Bauer in 1912, “time is short, my strength is limited, the office is a horror, the apartment is noisy, and if a pleasant, straightforward life is not possible then one must try to wriggle through by subtle maneuvers.”
Kafka is one of 161 minds who describe their daily rituals to…

Beloved Dog

By Maira Kalman,

Book cover of Beloved Dog

Rona Maynard Author Of Starter Dog: My Path to Joy, Belonging and Loving This World

From the list on the power of loving a dog.

Who am I?

For most of my life no one guessed I could fall for a dog, much less write a book about one. I associated dogs with drool on the floor and fur all over everything. One of those “just a dog” people, I thought the marriage bed should be strictly for humans. It crossed my mind that an eager dog would keep me from working into the night at the office where I ran Chatelaine, Canada’s premier magazine for women, but I chose a treadmill at the Y over rambles with a dog. At 65 I discovered my inner dog person. A ragged-eared mutt is now my joy and my muse.

Rona's book list on the power of loving a dog

Why did Rona love this book?

Pete the Irish Wheaten was supposed to comfort the children as their father lay dying of cancer. But it was their mother, author/illustrator Maira Kalman, who became his inseparable companion, following the pup into a whole new world of humor, heart, and inspiration.

Through Pete, she discovered the dogs of Franz Kafka, Gertrude Stein, and E.B. White—all captured in these pages with her customary wit and radiance. You’re never too old for a picture book, and if you have a soft spot for dogs, this one deserves a permanent spot on your nightstand.

Beloved Dog shows that “the most tender, uncomplicated, most generous part of our being blossoms, without any effort, when it comes to the love of a dog.”

By Maira Kalman,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Beloved Dog as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Maira Kalman, with wit and great sensitivity, reveals why dogs bring out the best in us

Maira Kalman + Dogs = Bliss

Dogs have lessons for us all. In Beloved Dog, renowned artist and author Maira Kalman illuminates our cherished companions as only she can. From the dogs lovingly illustrated in her acclaimed children's books to the real-life pets who inspire her still, Kalman's Beloved Dog is joyful, beautifully illustrated, and, as always, deeply philosophical.

Here is Max Stravinsky, the dog poet of Oh-La-La (Max in Love)-fame, and her own Irish Wheaton Pete (almost named Einstein, until he revealed himself…

The Master Executioner

By Loren D. Estleman,

Book cover of The Master Executioner

Tom Grace Author Of The Secret Cardinal

From the list on thrillers to keep you awake at night.

Who am I?

I am an avid reader and devour books of all types, but for pure entertainment I love a good thriller. These are the kind of books I read on planes and at the beach, and these are the kinds of books I shared with my late father. I contributed a piece on Rudyard Kipling’s Kim to the collection Thrillers: 100 Must Reads and am a member of the International Thriller Writers. While I write thrillers professionally, I remain a passionate reader of the genre and love to share the brilliant stories that kept me reading late into the night.

Tom's book list on thrillers to keep you awake at night

Why did Tom love this book?

While not technically a fast-paced thriller, The Master Executioner is the compelling story of a young Civil War veteran who evolves into a methodical, professional hangman in the old West. After completing a carpentry apprenticeship, Oscar Stone goes west to seek his fortunes in the frontier. Finding construction work scarce, he accepts a commission to build the gallows for a hanging and his career plans find a new trajectory. Stone is as exacting as a hangman as he was a carpentry, from the quality of the rope to the length of the drop he strives to provide the condemned a quick and painless death. Estleman’s prose is exceptional, his dialog crisp, and his storytelling lean and well-paced. The pages of The Master Executioner fly.

By Loren D. Estleman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Master Executioner as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Ordinary people do not understand Oscar Stone. Everything he does, he does impeccably. He is a profound student of his art, completely versed in its traditions over the centuries. He is a student of ropes and their properties, a master of the latest scientific knowledge about the human neck, a careful calculator of weights and drops, and an exacting observer of results. Far more than a quarter of a century he has worked to create a reputation as a man peerless in his craft: the master executioner. Yet he is utterly alone: His devotion to his work costs him his…

Themes and Conclusions

By Igor Stravinsky,

Book cover of Themes and Conclusions

Mike X Cohen Author Of Linear Algebra: Theory, Intuition, Code

From the list on for people who can’t read five books on the same topic.

Who am I?

I am an associate professor of neuroscience at the Donders Institute in the Netherlands. My research lab focuses on discovering how the brain uses electrical signaling to compute information, and transfer information across different regions of the brain. I also have a few decades of experience teaching scientific coding, data analysis, statistics, and related topics, and have authored several online courses and textbooks. I have a suspiciously dry sense of humor and insufficient patience to read five books on the same topic.

Mike's book list on for people who can’t read five books on the same topic

Why did Mike love this book?

Igor Stravinsky was one of the most influential and innovative music composers of the 20th century. He was also remarkably intelligent, humorous, and insightful. This book is a collection of interviews, letters, and notes made by and about Stravinsky. Some of these writings would interest only classical music enthusiasts, but much of the book comprises witty observations of human nature, art, and what it really means to praise or critique someone.

By Igor Stravinsky,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Themes and Conclusions as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'The conversations between Igor Stravinsky and Robert Craft are unique in musical history.' Sunday Times

Dialogues is the final volume in the legendary series of Stravinsky's conversations with Robert Craft.
In his Foreword, dated March 1971 shortly before his death, Stravinsky wrote of his 'final work of words': 'They are hardly the last words about myself or my music that I would like to have written, and in fact they say almost nothing about the latter, except tangentially, in comments on Beethoven. It is almost five years now since I have completed an original composition, a time during which I…