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Mozart's music has enthralled listeners for centuries. In this brilliant biography, acclaimed historian Paul Johnson draws upon his expert knowledge of the era and Mozart's own private letters to conjure Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's life and times in rich detail.
Johnson charts Mozart's life from age three through to his later years - when he penned "The Marriage of Figaro and Don Giovanni." Along the way, Johnson challenges some of the popular myths that cloud Mozart's image: his allegedly tempestuous personal relationships and supposedly bitter rivalry with Salieri, as well as the notion that he was desperately impoverished when he died.
The result - a bold, invigorating portrait of one of the most popular and influential composers of all time - is a welcome addition to Johnson's extraordinary body of work and makes a perfect gift for classical music lovers and fans of biographies.
Are your kids struggling with music theory? Do you wish you could help them learn how to read music? Help Your Kids With Music is what every frustrated parent needs. This invaluable guide covers all the core subjects needed to pass up to grade 5 music exams around the world, including melody, rhythm, chords and harmony, intervals, scales, and keys, styles and genres, and the instruments of the orchestra. Its unique visual approach, which uses simple, colourful illustrations and diagrams alongside a wide range of musical examples, allows parents and children to work together to understand even the trickiest concepts of music theory. Feature boxes on composers and musicians across a variety of styles and genres help children and parents learn and discover more about music, while guides to writing your own melody and harmonizing a song melody encourage budding composers to have a go at writing their own music. This book is also packed with musical examples, which you can listen to on the accompanying free audio app. Perfect for exam preparation, homework help, or learning to read music as part of learning an instrument, Help Your Kids With Music is a clear, accessible guide that will help parents and children understand even complex music theory and put it into practice with confidence.
Chopin's Piano begins in November 1838, when George Sand, her children and Frederick Chopin took a boat to Majorca for the winter. It describes their circumstances there, and how Chopin completed one of the most revolutionary works in the history of music - his Preludes - on 'a small Mallorquin piano' which he picked up when they arrived and carted up to the monastery in the mountains where he and Sand lodged. Kildea traces the history of the Preludes, their pianists, their interpretations, and the history of the Mallorquin piano itself, to find an unexpected path through the history of romantic music - via Wanda Landowska in Berlin in 1913, Paris in 1940-41 when the Nazis seized the piano, down to the end of romantic music. It is an astonishing narrative and detective story, an unclassifiable and thrilling book, which explores in an original way the changing meaning of music through time.
Do you know a capella from zarzuela, or your major from your minor? Can you distinguish between a serenade and a symphony? If you only have 30 seconds, there is time - using this book - to understand the creative journey taken by classical music from the Middle Ages to the modern era. Our early ancestors understood pitch and rhythm, the basic tools that have been worked and ordered by composers and performers over the past 400 years into an extraordinary body of music written for soloists, chamber musicians and entire orchestras. Today, everyone has access to a prodigy of classical music which, far from being traditional or elitist, is alive and magical. From plainsong to programme music, appreciate the magnitude and majesty, the passion and the pathos of sounds that have the power to stir our emotions to great joy or infinite sadness. Here's music to your ears.
The BBC Proms is the world's biggest and longest-running classical music festival and one of the jewels in the crown for the BBC. It is one of the strongest brand names in the music world and attracts a glittering array of artists and orchestras from the UK and around the world in over 150 concerts, talks, workshops and family events around London every summer. Whether you're a first-time visitor or an experienced Prommer, watching at home or listening on radio or online, the BBC Proms Guide will help you to plan your summer of music and discover in depth what lies behind the Proms - from the composers to the performers to how the events are broadcast. The Proms Guide contains brand-new articles on featured composers and insights on performers, new music and accompanying events.
Foreword written by Alexander Armstrong. Think you know classical music? It's time to put your knowledge to the test with this collection of questions and puzzles designed to challenge, to entertain - and to educate. Blending together basic trivia, complex wordplay and a range of visual teasers, the book calls on the knowledge of the Classic FM experts to provide hours of music-themed challenges. With difficulty levels varying from pleasantly tricky to fiendishly hard, the Classic FM Puzzle Book will entertain from the first bar until the very last note.
From Mozart to Mendelssohn, this comprehensive guide to classical music history and classical music biography is the perfect latest addition to the bestselling Big Ideas series. Easy to understand and clear to follow, this history of classical music explores and explains music theory and the impact of seminal pieces, while also providing fascinating stories about the lives of crucial composers and performers. Including an insightful foreword by Katie Derham, The Classical Music Book analyses over 90 works by famous composers. From Thomas Tallis in the early period to baroque masters like Bach and Handel, to the classical genius of Beethoven and Wagner and beyond to the modern day, The Classical Music Book explores the key ideas underpinning the world's greatest classical compositions and musical traditions, and defines their importance to the musical canon, placing them into their wider social, cultural, and historical context. The unique approach to the subject makes this book the perfect classical music guide for everyone. Regardless of whether you are relatively new to the subject and want to learn or if you are a classical music aficionado, there is plenty to discover in The Classical Music Book.
Community music projects always spread harmony... don't they? When players in Stockwell Park Orchestra fear they may be getting out of touch with their local community, they invite children from two nearby schools to join them for a season. Supercilious, rich Oakdean College pupils have never mixed with the rough Sunbridge Academy kids, and when things go missing and rumours spread, the situation threatens to turn ugly. And that's before any parents - or a godfather who happens to be a famous composer - get involved. DCI Noel Osmar has to tread carefully. After all, he's off duty. Can music heal social rifts? Who has been stealing and why? And will orchestra administrator Pearl have to go to Waitrose for some Duchy Original biscuits to keep the peace? Praise for The Stockwell Park Orchestra Series: "...a witty and irreverent musical romp, full of characters I'd love to go for a pint with. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the Stockwell Park Orchestra and can't wait for the next book in the series." Claire King, author of The Night Rainbow "Sharp, witty and richly entertaining." Lev Parikian, author of Why Do Birds Suddenly Disappear? "With its retro humour bordering on farce, this novel offers an escape into the turbulent (and bonkers) world of the orchestra." Isabel Costello, author of Paris Mon Amour
An anthology of 32 well-known seasonal melodies ranging from traditional German Christmas carols to modern tunes such as 'The Little Drummer Boy'. Fun ideas for Christmas decorations, mouth-watering recipes, poems and lots of information on children's seasonal celebrations in other countries make this a treasure trove for the whole family.
The Classic FM Music Boxis the perfect introduction to the world of classical music.Featuring beautiful hand-drawn illustrations and 8 sound chip buttons that play short bursts of iconic pieces of music, this unique book brings to life some of the greatest composers while listening to their iconic works. Readers will be introduced to the genius of legendary artists such as Mozart, Bach, Beethoven, Elgar, Handel, Verdi, Vivaldi, Strauss, Schubert, and will experience their lives, inspirations and music as never before. In addition to high quality sound chips, a unique QR code allows access to a bespoke landing page on Classic FM's website allowing readers to listen to full versions all music featured in the book.
In her early fifties, Moira Bennett was widowed with a school-age son and in need of a job. With virtually no previous working experience but full of energy and determination, she found herself working at the Britten-Pears School at Snape, helping to run masterclasses for young professional musicians studying with artists such as Peter Pears, Galina Vishnevskaya, Mstislav Rostropovich, Hugues Cuenod and William Pleeth. Her gift for arts administration - understanding the needs of performers and audiences - was soon to become highly valued at Aldeburgh, as she became the Registrar at the Britten-Pears School and went on to create the post of Development Director in the early days of commercial sponsorship of the arts. She was later invited to take on a similar role at the Barbican Centre, supporting a series of international arts festivals, before going on to work with the London Symphony Orchestra. In 2012 the Bittern Press published Moira Bennett's history of the Britten-Pears School, Making Musicians, which Classical Music magazine made one its Books of the Year. Now in her early nineties, Moira Bennett has written an extraordinary autobiography, casting an astute eye over her childhood and adolescence in South Africa, the impact of the Second World War and the Apartheid years on the country, and her second, 'unexpected', life in the arts.
The first full biography of John Ogdon; a tortured genius and arguably the greatest British pianist of all time. From the beginning of his professional career as a soloist John Ogdon was hailed as a musician of rare understanding and phenomenal technical gifts. Able to play and memorize just about any score at sight, tales of his impossible exploits at the keyboard are legion. Yet Ogdon was a man of extremes and it was this very extremity, while the source of much of his gift, that also led to appalling suffering. Here was a man whose feelings were inexpressibly deep and often tormenting, and Ogdon's glory days, following his coveted Tchaikovsky prize in 1962, came to a sudden end in 1973 when he suffered a severe mental breakdown which led to his being certified insane and made patient of the Court of Protection. Over the course of several harrowing years Ogdon would spend large periods of time in and out of psychiatric wards and halfway houses. The drugs and treatments prescribed sometimes affected his coordination, and his reputation suffered as a result. Yet Ogdon's commitment to his art remained undimmed, and until the end he drew out performances of tremendous beauty and conviction from the depths of his ravaged heart. In this illuminating biography, Charles Beauclerk explores the life of a brilliantly inspired artist, for whom music was both his cross and his salvation.
(BH Large Choral). for SATB with SATB solos and organ Imogen Holst orchestrated the work for wind quintet, percussion, organ (ad lib) and strings (1952), and there is also a version for SSAA and organ arranged by Edmund Walters (1966) Text: Christopher Smart Publisher: Boosey & Hawkes Difficulty level: 3 One of Britten's most popular and performed works in this genre, Rejoice in the Lamb was written for the 50th anniversary of St. Matthew's church, Northampton in 1943. The remarkable vicar, Walter Hussey, was a great patron of the arts. His vision for St. Matthew's and later for Chichester Cathedral, where he moved to become Dean, is one of the most fascinating stories in the history of the Anglican Church in the last century.Britten called his work a Festival Cantata and it is structured with choral and solo movements. The text by the supposedly mad Christopher Smart (1722-1771) is part of a poem called Jubilate Agno which he composed in a mental asylum having been committed there by his father-in-law for apparent religious mania. He died in a debtors' prison. It was W.H. Auden who brought the poem to Britten's attention. It is easy to see why Britten was so attracted to Smart's poem. It has great colour, drama, bizarre imagery, and the central issue of the individual against the crowd, or against authority, was one to which Britten was to return repeatedly in his works. Britten had developed a deep interest in Purcell's music at this time and had made keyboard realisations of accompaniments for a number of songs which he performed with Peter Pears. Purcell's influence can easily be heard in the Hallelujah sections. The challenges in this work are many and varied though the difficulty level is not great overall. It is an ideal concert work and is popular with performers and audiences alike. Practical issues include really quiet singing while projecting the voice at the start; dealing with the rhythmic complexities of the first quick section ('Let Nimrod the mighty hunter') and getting the most out of the words and the dynamic contrasts here; the unanimity of the dotted rhythms in the Hallelujah sections; the fielding of four soloists who can put across the character of these zany movements (the cat, the mouse, flowers); the realisation of the depth of passion in the 'For I am under the same accusation as my Saviour' section; the brilliance of the final quick section with all the bizarre musical instrument rhymes; and finally realising the 'stillness and serenity' of the slow music before the final Hallelujah. There is much to consider and much devil in the detail. However, the work is emphatically worth any amount of effort to realise Britten's inspiration. Duration: 17 minutes Paul Spicer, Lichfield, 2011
Haydn, Tchaikovsky, and Brahms, oh, my! The beginner's guide to classical music Classical Music For Dummies is a friendly, funny, easy-to-understand guide to composers, instruments, orchestras, concerts, recordings, and more. Classical music is widely considered one of the pinnacles of human achievement, and this informative guide will shows you just how beautiful and rewarding it can be. You'll learn how Bach is different from Beethoven, how Mozart is different still, and why not all "classical" music is actually Classical if it's really Baroque or Romantic. You'll be introduced to the composers and their work, and discover the groundbreaking pieces that shake the world every time they're played. Begin building your classical music library with the essential recordings that define orchestral, choral, and operatic beauty as you get acquainted with the orchestras and musicians that bring the composers to life. Whether you want to play classical music or just learn more about it, Classical Music For Dummies will teach you everything you need to know to get the most out of this increasingly popular genre. * Distinguish flute from piccolo, violin from viola, and trumpet from trombone * Learn the difference between overtures, requiems, arias, and masses * Explore the composers that shaped music as we know it * Discover the recordings your music library cannot be without Classical music has begun sneaking into the mainstream if your interest has been piqued, there's never been a better time to develop an appreciation for this incredibly rich, complex, and varied body of work. Classical Music For Dummies lays the groundwork, and demonstrates just how amazing classical music can be.
Evgeny Kissin's musicality, the depth and poetic quality of his interpretations, and his extraordinary virtuosity have earned him the veneration and admiration deserved only by one of the most gifted classical pianists of his generation. He is internationally renowned and hugely admired for his interpretations of the works of the classical and Romantic repertoire of Beethoven, Schubert, Chopin, Liszt, Schumann, Brahms, Rachmaninov and Prokofiev. He is in demand the world over, and has appeared with many of the world's great conductors, as well as all the great orchestras of the world. In Memoirs and Reflections, the intensity of Kissin's thinking and of his very being shines through, which displays his astonishing memory, fondness for his family and teachers, and an exalted sense of self that is essentially Russian.
Bands including Dead, Euronymous, and Varg Vikernes--along with sociologists, police officers, theologians, and occultists--recount how the satanic Black Metal, a spin-off of the heavy metal underground, devolved into acts of church burning, murder, and suicide in Scandinavia.
Filled with the spontaneous melodic invention and rhythmic variety that characterize his orchestral works, Dvorak's most celebrated creation, Symphony No. 9, "From the New World," echoes the folk spirit of his native Czechoslovakia as well as American influences. And the delightful freshness and uninhibited emotionalism of Symphony No. 8 have contributed to its lasting success.
This book develops a comparative analysis of the relationship between western art music, nations and nationalism. It explores the influence of emergent nations and nationalism on the development of classical music in Europe and North America and examines the distinctive themes, sounds and resonances to be found in the repertory of each of the nations. Its scope is broad, extending well beyond the period 1848-1914 when national music flourished most conspicuously. The interplay of music and nation encompasses the oratorios of Handel, the open-air music of the French Revolution and the orchestral works of Beethoven and Mendelssohn and extends into the mid-twentieth century in the music of Prokofiev, Shostakovich and Copland. The book addresses the representation of the national community, the incorporation of ethnic vernacular idioms into art music, the national homeland in music, musical adaptations of national myths and legends, the music of national commemoration and the canonisation of national music. Bringing together insights from nationalism studies, musicology and cultural history, it will be essential reading not only for musicologists but for cultural historians and historians of nationalism as well. MATTHEW RILEY is Reader in Music at the University of Birmingham. The late ANTHONY D. SMITH was Professor Emeritus of Nationalism and Ethnicity at the London School of Economics.
Music in the West Country is the first regional history of music in England. Ranging over seven hundred years, from the minstrels, waits, and cathedral choristers of the fourteenth century to the Bristol Sound of the late twentieth, the book explores the region's soundscape, from its gateway cities of Bristol and Salisbury in the east to the Isles of Scilly in the west, and examines music-making in tiny villages as well as conditions in important centres such as Bath, Exeter, Plymouth, and Bournemouth. What emerges is both a study of the typical - musical practices which would apply to any English region - and a portrait of the unique - features born of the region's physical isolation and charm, among them the growth of festival culture, the mythologising of folk music, the late survival of parish psalmody and nonconformist carolling, and the unique continuance, today, of a professional resort orchestra, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. Banfield's vividly written and extremely readable history of music in the west country considers an array of subjects, firmly centred on people's stories: musical inventions and the idea of tradition, music as cultural capital, the economics of musical employment and the demographics of musicianship, musical networks, the relationship of the hinterlands to the metropolis, the influence of topography, the importance of institutions and events, and the question of how to measure value. A study in prosopography, it shows how people went about their lives with music and explores how things changed for them - or did not. STEPHEN BANFIELD is Emeritus Professor of Music at the University of Bristol.
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