Tuesday, June 24, 2014
composersillustrated:

John Adams by Joe Ciardiello

Watch

composersillustrated:

John Adams by Joe Ciardiello

Watch

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Bruch - Violin Concerto No. 1 - I. Prelude: Allegro moderato

Performed by Jascha Heifetz with the New Symphony Orchestra of London with Sir Malcolm Sargent conducting

Sunday, June 8, 2014
barcarole:

Berg and Schönberg with a string quartet, by Dalbin.

barcarole:

Berg and Schönberg with a string quartet, by Dalbin.

Thursday, May 29, 2014
barcarole:

Wassily Kandinsky And His Cat, Vaske.


So cute

barcarole:

Wassily Kandinsky And His Cat, Vaske.

So cute

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Bach - Cello Suite in C Major No. 3 - I. Prelude

The Prelude of this suite consists of an A–B–A–C form, with A being a scale-based movement that eventually dissolves into an energetic arpeggio part; and B, where the cellist is introduced to thumb position, which is needed to reach the demanding chords. It then returns to the scale theme, and ends with a powerful and surprising chord movement.

Performed by Mstislav Rostropovich

 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Chopin - Ballade No. 3, Op. 47 (1841)

This ballade is dedicated to Pauline de Noailles. The inspiration for this Ballade is usually claimed to be Adam Mickiewicz’s poem Undine, but sometimes reported to be Mickiewicz’s Świtezianka; There are structural similarities with the “Raindrop Prelude” which was inspired by the weather in Majorca during Chopin’s disastrous vacation with George Sand. These include a repetitive A-flat which modulates into a repetitive G-sharp during the C-sharp minor section.

Performed by Van Cliburn

Thursday, April 17, 2014
I shall never be converted, and I shall remain true to my old religion of the classics until my life’s end. Richard Strauss

Bach - The Art of the Fugue - Contrapunctus V

Performed by the Emerson String Quartet

The early manuscript of The Art of Fugue, as well as the first printed editions, use open scoring, where each voice is written on its own staff. This has led to the assumption that The Art of Fugue was an intellectual exercise, meant to be studied and not heard. Some musicologists today, such as Gustav Leonhardt, argue that The Art of Fugue was probably intended to be played on a keyboard instrument (and specifically the harpsichord). However, opponents of Leonhardt’s theory such as Reinhard Goebel argue that: The Art of Fugue is not completely playable on a keyboard.
The open score probably means that Bach didn’t suggest any preference and that therefore the Art of Fugue can be performed by various ensembles, to personal taste.

Monday, April 14, 2014
barcarole:

Igor Stravinsky and Claude Debussy in the latter’s apartment in the Avenue du Bois de Boulogne, Paris; photo by Erik Satie, June 1910.

barcarole:

Igor Stravinsky and Claude Debussy in the latter’s apartment in the Avenue du Bois de Boulogne, Paris; photo by Erik Satie, June 1910.

Friday, April 11, 2014
I did my work slowly, drop by drop. I tore it out of me by pieces. Maurice Ravel (March 7, 1875 – December 28, 1937)
Monday, April 7, 2014

Liszt - Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 in C sharp minor

Performed by Alfred Brendel

Sunday, April 6, 2014
William Michael Harnett - Still Life—Violin and Music (1888)

William Michael Harnett - Still Life—Violin and Music (1888)

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Brahms - “Wiegenlied: Guten Abend, gute Nacht” (“Good evening, good night”), Op. 49, No. 4

Cradle Song is the common name for a number of children’s lullabies with similar lyrics, the original of which was Johannes Brahms’s “Wiegenlied: Guten Abend, gute Nacht” (“Good evening, good night”), Op. 49, No. 4, published in 1868 and widely known as Brahms’s Lullaby.

The lyrics of the first verse are from a collection of German folk poems called Des Knaben Wunderhorn and the second stanza was written by Georg Scherer in 1849. The lullaby’s melody is one of the most famous and recognizable in the world, used by countless parents to sing their babies to sleep. The Lullaby was dedicated to Brahms’s friend, Bertha Faber, on the occasion of the birth of her second son. Brahms had been in love with her in her youth and constructed the melody of the Wiegenlied to suggest, as a hidden counter-melody, a song she used to sing to him. The lullaby was first performed in public on 22 December 1869 in Vienna by Louise Dustmann (singer) and Clara Schumann (piano).

Performed by Maureen Forrester, contralto and John Newmark, piano.

Schumann - Dichterliebe Op. 48, No. 1 - Im wunderschönen Monat Mai

German:

Im wunderschönen Monat Mai,
als alle Knospen sprangen,
da ist in meinem Herzen
die Liebe aufgegangen.

Im wunderschönen Monat Mai,
als alle Vögel sangen,
da hab’ ich ihr gestanden
mein Sehnen und Verlangen.

English Translation:

In the wonderfully fair month of May,
as all the flower-buds burst,
then in my heart
love arose.

In the wonderfully fair month of May,
as all the birds were singing,
then I confessed to her
my yearning and longing.

Performed by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, baritone and Alfred Brendel, piano. Recorded in July 1985.

And what classical music does best and must always do more, is to show this kind of transformation of moods, to show a very wide psychological voyage. And I think that’s something that we as classical musicians have underestimated. Michael Tilson Thomas