Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Classical Music - My Struggle

Classical musc was always something I was going to 'get around to listening to' - until a few years ago I decided I'd better make a bit of effort. Maybe I was having a mid-life crisis and I couldn't afford a Harley Davidson. Anyway, here come some things that have helped me.

Various folk blethering on Desert Island Discs, eg:

  • John Copley talking about opera in general (I am pretty sure he also wrote a good article undermining the unpleasant elitism of some opera-goers but I can't find it online);
  • Frank Skinner on Mozart's Queen Of The Night  (how can a human voice do that?);
  • Debbie Harry on the 4th Movement of Mahler's 5th symphony (as used in "Death In Venice" which I still haven't seen);
  • Mark Gatiss on Vaughan Williams Fantasia On A Theme By Thomas Tallis (I had already tried to engage with this in a distracted sort of way but re-hearing it in this context was a helpful kick in the pants);

Buying a Best Of Puccini CD to see what it was like - and listening to it more than once;

Buying a Philip Glass Violin Concerto CD to see what it was like - and listening to it more than once;

Walking back into Fopp Records on Byres Rd., Glasgow (having just walked out) in order to ask what the piano music was that they had been playing. It was Ludovico Einaudi's Night Book album. Now when I drive around listening to it I feel like I'm in a film;

Classical Music For Dummies;

Film music - especially Ennio Morricone;

Classic FM's Hall Of Fame;

Building A Library on BBC Radio 3;

Various Scottish Opera productions (Carmen, Rigoletto, Tosca);

Asking Twitter for recommendations;

Perseverance in general.

The first opera I attended was La Bohème by the independent company Opera Bohemia, staged in a church in Glasgow with all music provided by a piano. This aria could be my favourite piece of classical music. I think....

And so on.

I can't leave without a plug for this (hey, it's my blog):



*shouts of "bravo!"*

No comments:

Post a Comment