From Turgenev's works and letters it is quite easy to see who were the composers closest to his heart: Mozart, Beethoven, and Schubert (whose music also makes an appearance in Fathers and Children). But still, one cannot help asking how Turgenev, who didn't play a single instrument and was hardly competent enough to read a musical score, acquired so fine a knowledge of the treasures of Western European music that allowed him to give such inspired descriptions of music in his novels and stories? Of course, given the subject we are dealing with, it is impossible not to mention Pauline Viardot and her fateful influence on Turgenev...
Stay! As I now see you – stay forever like that in my memory!
The last inspired sound has escaped your lips – your eyes are not shining nor sparkling – they have faded, weighed down by happiness, by the blissful consciousness of that beauty to which you were able to give expression, of that beauty in whose name you now hold out your triumphant, exhausted hands! [...]
Stay! And let me partake of your immortality, let fall into my soul a reflection of your immortality!