29. March 2017 · Comments Off on And Now For Something Totally Different · Categories: Harry Potter

When our daughter Kelsey was in high school she was really into the group “Harry and the Potters”. No, they never became a huge popular group, but they are fun and this is rather appropriate for our upcoming movie, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

29. March 2017 · Comments Off on Fantasy on Themes from Harry Potter · Categories: Harry Potter

Michael Sheppard, Pianist

(You just might hear another movie in there too.)

From the YouTube Page:

I began writing my Harry Potter fantasy back in 2004 or maybe even 2003. It isn’t because of writer’s block that it took so long to finish; it’s just that I would put it on the back burner for weeks, months, and at one point even years at a time to focus on being a pianist! But whenever I would bring it out again, it would immediately transport me back into the magical world of Hogwarts and all of those friends’ adventures.

This, I think, is largely due to John Williams’s irresistible main theme that is woven throughout the scores to all the movies, even the later sequels whose scores he didn’t write himself. It’s called “Hedwig’s Theme” (named for the owl that is Harry’s constant companion throughout), and is, for my money, one of JW’s more successful tunes in a career of hugely successful tunes. This theme is the basis for my fantasy.

It started out as almost — and I say “almost” very pointedly, because there are also a few fun quotes from other, not unrelated, music — a theme and variations, but then, at a certain point, I discovered that it wanted to go somewhere else; after a few variations, it seems to come to a kind of resting-place, where it wonders about the main material for a few measures, and then takes off in a flurry of other themes, some of which have been hinted at before. It builds to a huge climax using the “Family Portrait” material, which then abates a little and then builds up again into, yes: a fugue. (I had to.) The fugue uses all of the Harry-Potter-related material we’ve heard so far. Then this builds to an even bigger climax , where a surprise (and, again, not unrelated) theme gets aired for a few measures, but then it keeps going until it seems as if the very fabric of the universe gets ripped in half. Out of that mist creeps Hedwig’s Theme in a haze of disorientation; after considering all that has come before, it comes down and touches ground again. Where it touches down is, of course, anyone’s guess!

I hope you have as much fun listening to my “Fantasy on Themes from Harry Potter” as I’ve had writing it. And, though it took nearly seven years to write, it only takes about eleven minutes to hear. Life is funny that way.

29. March 2017 · Comments Off on Do You Have Your Tickets Yet? · Categories: Harry Potter, Movies

Here’s a clever fugue of Hedwig’s theme by Christian Perrotta:

This is the week of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. I’m playing English horn and third oboe as the movie plays on a big screen behind the full orchestra. You know you want to be there!

Yamaha Oboe in good condition, with hard case, three reeds (of unknown quality), cleaning swab and cork grease. Plastic body with silver plated keys. Pads and cork in good shape. The number 004864 is embossed on the body. Was given to my son by a relative, but he never really played it.

No. No. No.

Just NO.

I saw the images. Um … used reeds? I think not! Oboe without the left F and low B-flat. Why bother? Well … except for a lamp stand!

27. March 2017 · Comments Off on A Day Late But … · Categories: ACappellaAnyday™, Listen, vocal

From the YouTube page:

Please share this video to help The Tallis Scholars celebrate the 500th Anniversary on Sunday 26 March 2017 of Heinrich Isaac. The music is the first part of Isaac’s majestic ceremonial motet “Virgo prudentissima”. Our aim is for as many people as possible to listen to Isaac’s music on the exact anniversary of his death. The Tallis Scholars’ album of music by Isaac can be downloaded from iTunes and streamed on Apple Music and Spotify, just search for “Heinrich Isaac”.

… and yes, this composer is new to me.

27. March 2017 · Comments Off on Let the blessed morning come … · Categories: Listen, vocal

I found this moving … and would wait until evening to post, but it does end with the request for morning, so I’m using that as my excuse to post now. (You might have to turn up the volume … I did.)

Kärt Johanson arr P. Uusberg: Õhtu ily
E STuudio Youth Choir (Estonia)
Conductor Eliisa Sakarias

This translation was provided by Jennifer Runner:

Already the sun is being hidden,
The moonlight is being stolen.
Who hides the sun from us,
Who steals the moonlight?
God hides the sun from us,
The Creator* steals the moonlight.
Let the blessed morning come,
Let the sun rise over the forest.
I sing, the table bends* down,
Behind the house the oak bends,
Beside the well the birch bends,
Above the garden the bird’s perch bends.
Joy is heard all the way to Hiiumaa,
The glow all the way to Courland*,
Pleasure across our land.
Let the blessed morning come,
The sun rise over the forest.?

26. March 2017 · Comments Off on Sunday Evening Music · Categories: Sunday Evening Music

Bob Chilcott: If Ye Love Me
The National University of Singapore Choir Varsity Voices 2015; Nelson Kwei, Conductor

26. March 2017 · Comments Off on Sunday Morning Music · Categories: Sunday Morning Music

Hallelujah, arr. by Shawn Kirchner
Missouri State Chorale

25. March 2017 · Comments Off on Telemann Tonight · Categories: Oboe · Tags: , ,

I used to play this a lot when I was younger … I just love playing Telemann: I think he sits well for oboe fingers. I confess, though, that I never memorized it.

Telemann oboe sonata in A minor, TWV 41:a3
Bernice Lee, Oboe

22. March 2017 · Comments Off on A Favorite of Mine · Categories: Listen, Videos

I love Ravel’s Le tombeau de Couperin, and playing the second oboe/English horn part is truly a delight, and a whole lot less stressful than that tricky first oboe part!

These young players sure do a fine job! Kudos especially to oboist Juan Manuel García-Cano!

From the YouTube page (you can probably do the translating thing, yes?):
Le tombeau de Couperin. Ravel. Orquesta de Cámara SONY de la Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofía de Madrid. Director/Conductor: JAIME MARTÍN. Primer oboe/First oboe: Juan Manuel García-Cano. Junio/June 2011.
Auditorio Nacional de Música de Madrid. Sála de Cámara/Chamber Music Hall.