20th Century Opera: a series

I’ve spoken before about how difficult it is for me to explore and begin to enjoy opera the way I listen to most other music. For me, as for most people, it’s an auditory experience, and I’ll listen to music while I’m … Continue reading 20th Century Opera: a series

Schoenberg: Drei Klavierstücke, op. 11

This article has been marked as in need of a revisit. That’s where I feel like I didn’t do the piece justice or have more to say (usually because I didn’t know it nearly well enough or didn’t have the right perspective). I’ll keep the original article for posterity, but publish a new version that will eventually be linked here for my new take on it. performed by Maurizio Pollini That looks intimidating, those three links, but honestly, these pieces aren’t terribly overwhelming. In total, they come to about 13 or 14 minutes of music. Very delicious, important music. While … Continue reading Schoenberg: Drei Klavierstücke, op. 11

Aaron Copland: Clarinet Concerto

performed by Martin Frost and the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra So here we are in our final installment of a brief but surprisingly enjoyable miniseries on the clarinet.  What’s left? Well, we haven’t had a concerto yet, and this week’s piece brings us solidly into the modern era, with a piece written within the lifetimes of some people still around today.  Copland’s clarinet concerto was written shortly after his third symphony. I feel like this shouldn’t be the piece we use to first represent Copland on the blog, as he has lots of other stuff worth talking about, but in the … Continue reading Aaron Copland: Clarinet Concerto

Centenniel Music Post: Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3 in Dm, op. 30

performed by the Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin under Riccardo Chailly; Martha Argerich, piano //player.vimeo.com/video/63725542 This is intimidating. I guess everything about this piece is except for listening to it, and sometimes even that. There’s so. much. to. say. about this piece that I almost don’t want to try. There are so many theses, recordings, liner notes, program notes, concert talks and everything else about this piece that it would be ludicrous for me to think I have anything else to add but my own opinion and feelings of the piece, so that’s pretty much all I’m going to share, aside from some basics. For the technical bits … Continue reading Centenniel Music Post: Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3 in Dm, op. 30

Olivier Messiaen: Turangalîla-Symphonie

This piece has been revisited, and an updated article has been written. Please read it here.  I’ll keep the original article (below) for posterity, but I would suggest reading the new article instead. performed by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra under Riccardo Chailly Piano- Jean-Yves Thibaudet Ondes Martenot- Takashi Harada recorded at the Grotezaal, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam in 1992 This “symphony” (referred to by Wikipedia as a “large-scale piece of orchestral music”), was written from 1946-1948, and, like the other not-actually-a-symphony 20th century work I listened to recently, this piece is ALSO a commission from Serge Koussevitsky (thru an organization). Koussevitsky commissioned Turangalîla … Continue reading Olivier Messiaen: Turangalîla-Symphonie