Letter: In Brief

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Stephen Bayley (Saturday Essay, 26 September) claims that no one can hum a little music by Arthur Schnittke. I guess this is true. If, however, he is referring to the late Alfred Schnittke, then I have to correct him, as I can and frequently do hum his music.

There are plenty of examples of composers being considered "unhummable" in their time, whose melodies are deemed eloquent after a few decades. The article reflects the usual problem about predicting the future. Mysteriously, everyone always thinks their own favourites will endure.

PAUL HENDERSON

London E17

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