In essence

Up close with composers

Love on a cosmic scale Olivier Messiaen, Claire Delbos and Yvonne Loriod

Claire Delbos was the daughter of a Sorbonne professor, a member of the prominent new music society “La Spirale,” and an accomplished violinist and composer. Predictably, she studied at the Paris Conservatory and quickly crossed paths with another highly talented [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | September 21st, 2017
Works Disliked By Their Own Composers! Part I

Imagine you spent dozens or hundreds of hours writing a piece of music, but for whatever reason, you’re not satisfied with it. What does it take for you to repress, ignore, or even destroy your own hard work? Here are [...] more >>

by Emily E. Hogstad | September 18th, 2017
Mechanical Haydn

Nicholas I, Prince Eszterháza was crazy about the arts! He built a number of palaces and his taste for opera and other grand musical productions earned him the title “the Magnificent.” He certainly was extravagant in his clothing budget, and [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | September 18th, 2017
From Stage to Film: The Many Lives of George Gershwin’s Work

For many people, Vincent Minnelli’s film An American in Paris, presents a number of perfections: the perfect Paris, the perfect music, and the perfect lyrics. Starting with the program music of An American in Paris, the orchestra work, Alan Jay [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | September 15th, 2017
Destination Sydney

Perhaps a trip to the antipodes is on your schedule. In many ways, it’s a trip to an older culture, both of the native peoples and of the western arrivals. And yet, at the same time, cut away from the [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | September 8th, 2017
Poetic Muse Edward Elgar and Caroline Alice Roberts

Rudyard Kipling wrote, “Pleasant the snaffle of Courtship, improving the manners and carriage; But the colt who is wise will abstain from the terrible thorn-bit of Marriage.” The Irish poet Thomas Moore had a similar take on that mysterious and [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | September 4th, 2017
The Dangers of being a Musical Prodigy Wolfie Mozart and Smallpox

Growing up a musical genius can be very dangerous! When Leopold Mozart realized that his son Wolfgang had a unique talent, he saw a great opportunity to make money. Shuffling his son and daughter around the courts and musical centers [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | September 2nd, 2017
Destination New York

If you’ve ever visited the place that many people consider the centre of the known universe then you’re familiar with its vibrant downtown, its meditative Central Park, the way the city buzzles, and sizzles, and then sometime is the perfect [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | September 1st, 2017