“When I played Carnegie Hall in…it must have been 1918 or 1919 or so…the result was a near riot,” Hanna said. She lit a fresh cigarette but didn’t inhale, letting the smoke wreathe her head. “My own composition–very dissonant, very futurist, full of radical tone clusters and other such nonsense. The result was a near riot.”

“They didn’t like it?” Berne asked.

“It was one thing for young turks like Ornstein and Schoenberg and Scriabin to play music like that. But a woman? There was an editorial in the Times the next day saying that I was childishly beating my piano and letting my handlers–my male handlers–transform it into something avant-garde.”

“What did you do?”

“I sent them a copy of one of my sheets with all the music there in full notation. Never did get a response, but I loved the fact that little old me could case such a sensation.”

Bern delicately cleared his throat and swatted away some encroaching smoke. “Why’d you give up performing then?”

“Two things, really,” Hanna sighed. “For one, I grew bored with futurism and dissonance. Experimenting with tonality…now that was enough to get me attacked from all sides. The futurists who’d made me their poster child weren’t happy, and the people I’d irritated in the first place weren’t either.”

“And the second thing?”

“I fell in love.”