‘To surrender oneself utterly to the listening experience’ – this is what Anton Webern’s music demands. ‘To recognise sounds, to experience them sensuously’ – these are the composer’s main concerns. His works are among the most important compositions of the 20th century and represent the most radical and logically consistent continuation of the 12-tone technique developed by Arnold Schönberg. ‘He could express a whole novel in a sigh’, said Schönberg of his compressed writing style. His first masterpiece, the Passacaglia for orchestra op. 1 (first performed in 1908) is a remarkable testimony to Webern’s handling of the late Romantic orchestral apparatus as well as to his clear formal organisation of its 269 bars.