Robert Craft progressed with remarkable speed from being Stravinsky’s assistant to serving as his adviser, collaborator, and defender.
While Craft has been castigated for suppressing or misstating information, his actions must be viewed in the context of his complicated relationship with the composer, which has no clear parallel in music history. Craft was ethically bound both to interpret Stravinsky to the outside world and to ensure his status as a 20th-century hero.
This according to “Boswellizing an icon: Stravinsky, Craft, and the historian’s dilemma” by Charles M. Joseph, an essay included in Stravinsky inside out (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2001, pp. 233–265).
Today is Craft’s 90th birthday! Below, he recalls Stravinsky’s California years.