25. March 2008 · Comments Off on Happy Birthday · Categories: Birthdays!, Links, Listen, Videos, Watch

to Bela Bartok. Thanks for this, among other works.

And happy birthday, too, to Toscanini. My high school band director adored you. Maybe because of your fiery reputation. But also, I’m sure, because you conducted so much of what he loved. (We played a ton of opera transcriptions.) Here’s La Forza del Destino for your enjoyment.

Now what would have been fun would have been to find Toscanini conducting Bartok. Hmm. I read one little blurb that said Toscanini couldn’t stomach Bartok. Strong words.

Robert Hugill was criticized harshly for blogging. Wow. If I’d received that I would have been rather shaken, since I’m so darn wimpy and take harsh words badly. But he simply posted the hostile email for us and then responded.

But what I want to know is why the heck is that angry person bothering to read a blog if he thinks blogs are horrible? I don’t like tomatoes so I don’t eat them. I don’t care for country western music so I don’t listen to it. I don’t like horror movies so I don’t watch them.

What is it about the people who hate something immensely yet indulge in it, mock it, or otherwise treat it with hostility? Maybe that’s what Robert should have asked? 🙂

(And now I suppose I’ll get a harsh email myself. I’m bracing for it! I’ll be brave. I’ll be strong. I’ll go have some chocolate.)

25. March 2008 · Comments Off on Ah, the Wealthy · Categories: Links

… and their very expensive toys.

What can one say? I’m glad oboes aren’t that costly and don’t get hidden away. (It’s weird not to really read any quote by Zuckerman about the violin. The owner quotes him but, to me anyway, that doesn’t quite count.)

25. March 2008 · 2 comments · Categories: Links

Must music have a point? And what does it mean to have a point, anyway? I’m really just not sure … I’m not trying to be annoying (even though I am usually annoying).

Vaughan Williams’ composition [The Lark Ascending] is Classic FM listeners’ favourite piece of classical music. Like the station, it’s blameless but pointless

Read here.


Here’s another article on the people’s choice. (McCartney? Really? Guess I’ll have to listen to that piece sometime; I hadn’t heard much good about it, but I shouldn’t judge it without hearing it … um … or should I?)

It appears that Maestro Beecham didn’t care much for Vaughan Williams. Read about it here.

25. March 2008 · Comments Off on Last Night · Categories: Ramble

We had our first rehearsal for the Symphony Silicon Valley Brahms/Beethoven set. I arrived slightly after the orchestra began rehearsing Schicksalslied. What wonderful music! Then we worked on the fourth movement of the Beethoven.

Sometimes it’s just an honor to be a musician. Playing the Beethoven certainly made me feel that way.

What a great program!

25. March 2008 · Comments Off on MQOD · Categories: Quotes

Everything will pass, and the world will perish but the Ninth Symphony will remain.

-Michael Bakunin, quoted in Edmund Wilson, To the Finland Station (1940)