Author Topic: Pieces that have blown you away recently  (Read 82585 times)

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Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #600 on: August 27, 2018, 10:25:04 PM »
I caught some of Suk's Asrael symphony on P.T. last week. It really struck me as something special. Looking forward to finding a recording and digging into it.
A great work - very moving and powerful. There are many fine recordings, including ones by Ancerl, Tallich, Kubelik and Mackerras.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline pjme

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #601 on: August 28, 2018, 03:14:51 AM »
<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/pyfnU5Bd5HI" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/pyfnU5Bd5HI</a>



It seems difficult to find recent information on this enigmatic composer...and I do not read/understand Russian.
Anyway, I discovered "Lord Novgorod the Great" by accident on YT and have been listening to this symphony/symphonic suite (with mixed chorus and mezzo/alto solo) over and over again. Mesmerising! The big sweeping melodies are (very) easy on the ear, but for me the composition works as an aural vortex. Would love to hear & see in a concert hall.
I love the alto soloist in part 3 - a wonderfully huge voice, sweet, hot and grating at the same time....But who is she?

Yuri Boutsko (b. 1938 - d.2015) has devoted his life and art to adapting the old Russian chant (called "znamenny rospev") to modern times, while at the same time preserving its context and religious meaning. The znamenny chant is interpreted by Butsko as "the ideal of spiritual perfection, a goal to be constantly pursued." The composer has constructed an original system determining the "method of working with znamenny chant." The underlying principle of the system is a melodic scale extracted from znamenny chant (the ancient Russian tone-row). Although the scale is limited by the compass of a human voice, Boutsko extends it in by adding tri-tones [or trichords] above and below until the initial starting pitch is restored. The system is open and contains twelve tones. Boutsko describes it as a kind of Russian dodecaphony, applying a twelve-tone row extracted from Russian material. Boutsko's religious approach determines specific qualities of his music: extended durations, a continuous elaboration of each image or motive, and an absence of sharp contrasts. The ever intense 'tone' and the need to shape an exhaustive statement generate the quality of "extended time," sometimes to the extent of meditation.
Boutsko's music has been widely performed in Russia and many other countries.

Source: https://uiowa.edu/cnm/festival-composers

I. Вьюн над водой: (Плач) ....(shout or cry)
II. Ах вы, ветры: (Причитание) .....(lament or elegy)
III. Слава: (Величальная) ......(cheering or joy, glory)

Who can translate corrrectly? + Give some information on the meaning.....
P.
« Last Edit: August 28, 2018, 04:53:03 AM by pjme »

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #602 on: August 28, 2018, 04:38:41 AM »
<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/pyfnU5Bd5HI" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/pyfnU5Bd5HI</a>



It seems difficult to find recent information on this enigmatic composer...and I do not read/understand Russian.
Anyway, I discovered "Lord Novgorod the Great" by accident on YT and have been listening to this symphony/symphonic suite (with mixed chorus and mezzo/alto solo) over and over again. Mesmerising! The big sweeping melodies are (very) easy on the ear, but for me the composition works as an aural vortex. Would love to hear & see in a concert hall.
I love the alto soloist in part 3 - a wonderfully huge voice, sweet, hot and grating at the same time....But who is she?

Yuri Boutsko (b. 1938) has devoted his life and art to adapting the old Russian chant (called "znamenny rospev") to modern times, while at the same time preserving its context and religious meaning. The znamenny chant is interpreted by Butsko as "the ideal of spiritual perfection, a goal to be constantly pursued." The composer has constructed an original system determining the "method of working with znamenny chant." The underlying principle of the system is a melodic scale extracted from znamenny chant (the ancient Russian tone-row). Although the scale is limited by the compass of a human voice, Boutsko extends it in by adding tri-tones [or trichords] above and below until the initial starting pitch is restored. The system is open and contains twelve tones. Boutsko describes it as a kind of Russian dodecaphony, applying a twelve-tone row extracted from Russian material. Boutsko's religious approach determines specific qualities of his music: extended durations, a continuous elaboration of each image or motive, and an absence of sharp contrasts. The ever intense 'tone' and the need to shape an exhaustive statement generate the quality of "extended time," sometimes to the extent of meditation.
Boutsko's music has been widely performed in Russia and many other countries.

Source: https://uiowa.edu/cnm/festival-composers
Sounds like a most interesting discovery!
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline kyjo

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #603 on: August 28, 2018, 05:35:09 AM »
Coincidentally I have been listening to this work as well Kyle. I think that the Hickox version is the best although I have three other versions ( ::)) including the premiere performance under Beecham. Yes, I'm not sure that I'd agree that it's the greatest British symphony since Elgar but it is a very fine score in every respect. In fact Alwyn is a composer whose work continues to give me great pleasure. The biggest mystery to me is why his Violin Concerto is so ignored. I think that IS one of the finest British violin concertos. The Chandos CD coupling the VC with Symphony 3 is perhaps my favourite Alwyn disc.

Yes, that Chandos CD is really fantastic and the VC contained on it was another great recent discovery for me. I agree that its neglect is baffling and I prefer it to the more well-known VCs by Elgar and Britten, for example. In general, Alwyn is a really fine composer.
"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music" - Sergei Rachmaninoff

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #604 on: August 28, 2018, 08:44:43 AM »
Yes, that Chandos CD is really fantastic and the VC contained on it was another great recent discovery for me. I agree that its neglect is baffling and I prefer it to the more well-known VCs by Elgar and Britten, for example. In general, Alwyn is a really fine composer.
I totally agree with you Kyle. I prefer the Alwyn VC to virtually any other VC I know, including the one by Sibelius. Perhaps the Sibelius is the greater work but I much prefer the Alwyn. The BBCs negative attitude to Alwyn's VC probably is largely responsible for its neglect. Perhaps the greatest of all in my view is the No.2 by Pettersson and the No.1 by Shostakovich but I find the Alwyn just as moving in a different way. Malcolm Williamson's VC is another neglected yet very worthwhile VC. I wonder if you know it?
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline SymphonicAddict

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #605 on: August 28, 2018, 11:00:07 AM »
<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/pyfnU5Bd5HI" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/pyfnU5Bd5HI</a>



It seems difficult to find recent information on this enigmatic composer...and I do not read/understand Russian.
Anyway, I discovered "Lord Novgorod the Great" by accident on YT and have been listening to this symphony/symphonic suite (with mixed chorus and mezzo/alto solo) over and over again. Mesmerising! The big sweeping melodies are (very) easy on the ear, but for me the composition works as an aural vortex. Would love to hear & see in a concert hall.
I love the alto soloist in part 3 - a wonderfully huge voice, sweet, hot and grating at the same time....But who is she?

Yuri Boutsko (b. 1938 - d.2015) has devoted his life and art to adapting the old Russian chant (called "znamenny rospev") to modern times, while at the same time preserving its context and religious meaning. The znamenny chant is interpreted by Butsko as "the ideal of spiritual perfection, a goal to be constantly pursued." The composer has constructed an original system determining the "method of working with znamenny chant." The underlying principle of the system is a melodic scale extracted from znamenny chant (the ancient Russian tone-row). Although the scale is limited by the compass of a human voice, Boutsko extends it in by adding tri-tones [or trichords] above and below until the initial starting pitch is restored. The system is open and contains twelve tones. Boutsko describes it as a kind of Russian dodecaphony, applying a twelve-tone row extracted from Russian material. Boutsko's religious approach determines specific qualities of his music: extended durations, a continuous elaboration of each image or motive, and an absence of sharp contrasts. The ever intense 'tone' and the need to shape an exhaustive statement generate the quality of "extended time," sometimes to the extent of meditation.
Boutsko's music has been widely performed in Russia and many other countries.

Source: https://uiowa.edu/cnm/festival-composers

I. Вьюн над водой: (Плач) ....(shout or cry)
II. Ах вы, ветры: (Причитание) .....(lament or elegy)
III. Слава: (Величальная) ......(cheering or joy, glory)

Who can translate corrrectly? + Give some information on the meaning.....
P.

You post really rare music, and that is quite fine for me. Many thanks for this, it sounds very intriguing and exotic.

Offline SymphonicAddict

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #606 on: August 28, 2018, 11:03:29 AM »
A work that has really struck me recently is 'The Taking of T'ung Kuan' by Jacob Avshalomov, for which I have relm1 to thank. It only lasts eight minutes but is a powerful, craggy, tonal and dramatic score which I have played many times since receiving the CD (a 1952 performance with Stokowski conducting):



I saw somewhere Avshalomov was influenced by Chinese music (in fact, the title of that work seems Chinese). It looks interesting because for your description. Another new work to play. Thanks!

Offline pjme

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #607 on: August 28, 2018, 12:11:42 PM »
You post really rare music, and that is quite fine for me. Many thanks for this, it sounds very intriguing and exotic.

You're welcome. I love archives and go treasure hunting for the odd cd or book: car boot sales, second hand shops (I love old scores), the Internet....! It helps to be retired. I admit.
P.



Offline relm1

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #608 on: August 28, 2018, 02:38:05 PM »
<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/pyfnU5Bd5HI" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/pyfnU5Bd5HI</a>



It seems difficult to find recent information on this enigmatic composer...and I do not read/understand Russian.
Anyway, I discovered "Lord Novgorod the Great" by accident on YT and have been listening to this symphony/symphonic suite (with mixed chorus and mezzo/alto solo) over and over again. Mesmerising! The big sweeping melodies are (very) easy on the ear, but for me the composition works as an aural vortex. Would love to hear & see in a concert hall.
I love the alto soloist in part 3 - a wonderfully huge voice, sweet, hot and grating at the same time....But who is she?

Yuri Boutsko (b. 1938 - d.2015) has devoted his life and art to adapting the old Russian chant (called "znamenny rospev") to modern times, while at the same time preserving its context and religious meaning. The znamenny chant is interpreted by Butsko as "the ideal of spiritual perfection, a goal to be constantly pursued." The composer has constructed an original system determining the "method of working with znamenny chant." The underlying principle of the system is a melodic scale extracted from znamenny chant (the ancient Russian tone-row). Although the scale is limited by the compass of a human voice, Boutsko extends it in by adding tri-tones [or trichords] above and below until the initial starting pitch is restored. The system is open and contains twelve tones. Boutsko describes it as a kind of Russian dodecaphony, applying a twelve-tone row extracted from Russian material. Boutsko's religious approach determines specific qualities of his music: extended durations, a continuous elaboration of each image or motive, and an absence of sharp contrasts. The ever intense 'tone' and the need to shape an exhaustive statement generate the quality of "extended time," sometimes to the extent of meditation.
Boutsko's music has been widely performed in Russia and many other countries.

Source: https://uiowa.edu/cnm/festival-composers

I. Вьюн над водой: (Плач) ....(shout or cry)
II. Ах вы, ветры: (Причитание) .....(lament or elegy)
III. Слава: (Величальная) ......(cheering or joy, glory)

Who can translate corrrectly? + Give some information on the meaning.....
P.

I found this work list:
Compositions:
Opera
"Notes of a Madman" (according to NV Gogol)
"White Nights" (after FM Dostoevsky)
"From the letters of the artist" (according to KA Korovin)
"Venediktov or the Golden Triangle" (according to AV Chayanov)

Oratorio

"The Legend of the Pugachev Riot"
"Pesnoslov" (on the verses of NA Klyuyev)
7 cantatas (including "Wedding Songs", "Evenings", "Ode to the Revolution", "Liturgical Chants") and other choral compositions

Symphonies
7 for a large symphony orchestra
3 for the chamber (string) orchestra, including "Spiritual verse" (No. 3), "Ode to the memory of the victims of the Revolution" (No. 2)
3 symphonies for mixed composition: "Old Russian Painting" (No. 1), "From Russian Antiquity" (No. 2), "Mister Veliky Novgorod" (No. 3)

Concerts
"Polyphonic Concert" - 19 counterpoints for keyboards on the themes of the famous singing
12 concerts for string and string orchestra (including 4 for violin, 2 for viola, 2 for cello and orchestra).
3 concert symphonies (or "Double concerts": violin - viola, violin - cello)
2 piano concertos

Chamber compositions
Sonatas (for piano, viola, violin)
7 quartets
3 trios
The "trio-quintet" ("Es muss sein")

Compositions for Organ
"The Great Organ Book"
"Liturgical Music" (in memory of Maria Rasputina)
...and other works

Music for theater and cinema
Music for films, including the 13-episode film "Walking by Flour", "The Mistress and the Hooligan" (by VV Mayakovsky), etc.
Theatrical music: Pugachev, Mother, What to Do, Hamlet (Taganka Theater), Tsar's Hunt, The Last Victim (Mossovet Theater), Petersburg Dreams, Anna Karenina (Vakhtangov Theater), Puchin (Small Academic Theater), and others.

Vocal cycles
"6 scenes" by AA Blok ("12") for bass and piano
"Loneliness" by VF Khodasevich for baritone and piano
« Last Edit: August 28, 2018, 02:39:59 PM by relm1 »

Offline kyjo

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #609 on: August 28, 2018, 03:29:02 PM »
I totally agree with you Kyle. I prefer the Alwyn VC to virtually any other VC I know, including the one by Sibelius. Perhaps the Sibelius is the greater work but I much prefer the Alwyn. The BBCs negative attitude to Alwyn's VC probably is largely responsible for its neglect. Perhaps the greatest of all in my view is the No.2 by Pettersson and the No.1 by Shostakovich but I find the Alwyn just as moving in a different way. Malcolm Williamson's VC is another neglected yet very worthwhile VC. I wonder if you know it?

I love the Sibelius VC, but it's quite overplayed, and there's no reason why, say, the Alwyn shouldn't be played instead sometimes. Probably because it's not "virtuosic" enough.  ::) I agree about the greatness of the Shostakovich VC 1 but don't know the Pettersson or Williamson works - must investigate. Other lesser-known VCs I've had great pleasure in discovering include those by Piston (no. 1), Wirén, Karlowicz, Goldmark, Atterberg, Röntgen (A minor), and Tariverdiev (no. 1).
"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music" - Sergei Rachmaninoff

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #610 on: August 29, 2018, 12:00:09 AM »
I saw somewhere Avshalomov was influenced by Chinese music (in fact, the title of that work seems Chinese). It looks interesting because for your description. Another new work to play. Thanks!
And here it is:
https://youtu.be/UflLGcY4ZZk
 :)
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline pjme

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #611 on: August 29, 2018, 12:07:35 AM »
I found this work list:
Compositions:
.....

Thanks for that info Relm.
On YT one can find several performances of works by Butsko. At least two symphonies, the Wedding cantata (an early work - Stravinsky's Svadebka was surely an inspiration), the Canon to the Guardian Angel, the Old Russian paintings suite and « Artist’s Life » a capriccio for piano, Strings and percussion (2004).
I haven't listened to it all. Butsko seems to have a voice, a style / grammar that I like.
P.

Offline pjme

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #612 on: August 29, 2018, 12:15:35 AM »
Thanks Vandermolen!


And here it is:
https://youtu.be/UflLGcY4ZZk
 :)

It was these lines from a poem by Li-Po which inspired Avshalomov: "came the barbarian horde with the autumn/ out went the army of the House of Han..."

https://keisersouthernmusic.com/compositions/taking-tung-kuan-fs
and
Born in 1919, Jacob Avshalomov spent the first 18 years of his life in China. He grew up learning music from his Russian-Jewish composer father, who had chosen to dedicate much of his career to bridging western and Chinese idioms. Upon relocating to the US for college, Avshalomov played percussion and cello with Portland Junior Symphony (later PYP) while studying conducting with Jacques Gershkovitch and attending Reed, before leaving for Eastman School of Music and service as an interpreter in WWII.

For Avshalomov’s own first major orchestral composition in 1943 (revised in ’47 and ’53), he followed in his father’s footsteps and took inspiration from a pair of anti-war poems by the treasured 8th century Chinese poet Li Po describing an epochal rebellion that nearly destroyed the Chinese empire to create The Taking of T’ung Kuan [modern Tongguan].  Avshalomov called it ‘a battle piece’ that ‘sort of screams’.  While most of the piece does convey war’s chaos and violence, the more pensive middle section may reflect the image of woman depicted in the poems worrying over her soldier-lover, “only to learn how futile all her tears are.” Musically, it bears many hallmarks of Chinese influence such as pentatonic scale, counterpoint lines rather than a single melody supported by harmony, and foregrounded use of percussion.

Source/https://portlandyouthphil.org/concerts-tickets/more-about-jeremiah-symphony/

48. BY THE GREAT WALL

Came the barbarian horde with the autumn;
Out went the imperial army from the House of Han.
The general has divided the tiger tallies,
And the dunes of White Dragon are now
The camping ground of the brave.
The moon in the wilderness
Follows the movement of his bow,
And upon his sword the desert frost blossoms.
He has not even entered this side of the Jewel Gate
Pass.
But do not heave a
long sigh, 0 little wife!

« Last Edit: August 29, 2018, 12:26:13 AM by pjme »

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #613 on: August 29, 2018, 04:50:15 AM »
Thanks Vandermolen!


It was these lines from a poem by Li-Po which inspired Avshalomov: "came the barbarian horde with the autumn/ out went the army of the House of Han..."

https://keisersouthernmusic.com/compositions/taking-tung-kuan-fs
and
Born in 1919, Jacob Avshalomov spent the first 18 years of his life in China. He grew up learning music from his Russian-Jewish composer father, who had chosen to dedicate much of his career to bridging western and Chinese idioms. Upon relocating to the US for college, Avshalomov played percussion and cello with Portland Junior Symphony (later PYP) while studying conducting with Jacques Gershkovitch and attending Reed, before leaving for Eastman School of Music and service as an interpreter in WWII.

For Avshalomov’s own first major orchestral composition in 1943 (revised in ’47 and ’53), he followed in his father’s footsteps and took inspiration from a pair of anti-war poems by the treasured 8th century Chinese poet Li Po describing an epochal rebellion that nearly destroyed the Chinese empire to create The Taking of T’ung Kuan [modern Tongguan].  Avshalomov called it ‘a battle piece’ that ‘sort of screams’.  While most of the piece does convey war’s chaos and violence, the more pensive middle section may reflect the image of woman depicted in the poems worrying over her soldier-lover, “only to learn how futile all her tears are.” Musically, it bears many hallmarks of Chinese influence such as pentatonic scale, counterpoint lines rather than a single melody supported by harmony, and foregrounded use of percussion.

Source/https://portlandyouthphil.org/concerts-tickets/more-about-jeremiah-symphony/

48. BY THE GREAT WALL

Came the barbarian horde with the autumn;
Out went the imperial army from the House of Han.
The general has divided the tiger tallies,
And the dunes of White Dragon are now
The camping ground of the brave.
The moon in the wilderness
Follows the movement of his bow,
And upon his sword the desert frost blossoms.
He has not even entered this side of the Jewel Gate
Pass.
But do not heave a
long sigh, 0 little wife!
My pleasure and thank you pjme for the additional info.
It was relm1 who originally alerted me to the work, surmising correctly that it was just the sort of crash-bang-wallop music which would appeal to me.
 :)
« Last Edit: August 29, 2018, 04:53:23 AM by vandermolen »
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline pjme

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #614 on: August 29, 2018, 06:30:06 AM »
...then surely you like Bax' Paean !

https://youtu.be/9431PsC0Wik

Peter

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #615 on: August 29, 2018, 08:57:27 AM »
...then surely you like Bax' Paean !

https://youtu.be/9431PsC0Wik

Peter

Absolutely! Actually it features on one of my very favourite Bax CDs:


Nympholept, Christmas Eve in the Mountains and even the unpromising sounding Festival Overture are all excellent in my view.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2018, 08:59:11 AM by vandermolen »
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline SymphonicAddict

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #616 on: August 29, 2018, 12:51:58 PM »
And here it is:
https://youtu.be/UflLGcY4ZZk
 :)

Listening to it now. It's craggy indeed, and ferocious with Chinese touches. I like it! Thanks for the link, Jeffrey!


Offline Cato

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #617 on: August 29, 2018, 01:12:37 PM »


A work that has really struck me recently is 'The Taking of T'ung Kuan' by Jacob Avshalomov, for which I have relm1 to thank. It only lasts eight minutes but is a powerful, craggy, tonal and dramatic score which I have played many times since receiving the CD (a 1952 performance with Stokowski conducting):




Leopold Stokowski!  What a marvel the man was!  Contemporary composers usually found great support from him!  Ever hear of Hans Barth?   He invented a quarter-tone piano in the 1920's and wrote music for the instrument, including a concerto.

Guess who conducted the premiere of his Concerto for Quarter-Tone Piano;)   Yes, Leopold!
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #618 on: August 29, 2018, 08:45:57 PM »
Listening to it now. It's craggy indeed, and ferocious with Chinese touches. I like it! Thanks for the link, Jeffrey!
Delighted that you like it Cesar!
 :)
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Pieces that have blown you away recently
« Reply #619 on: August 29, 2018, 08:47:29 PM »
Leopold Stokowski!  What a marvel the man was!  Contemporary composers usually found great support from him!  Ever hear of Hans Barth?   He invented a quarter-tone piano in the 1920's and wrote music for the instrument, including a concerto.

Guess who conducted the premiere of his Concerto for Quarter-Tone Piano;)   Yes, Leopold!
No, never heard of him Leo but will look out for his music.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).