In essence

Up close with composers

 
Destination Shanghai

Shanghai – the beautiful city on the Yangtze River – was one of the first major cities of China opened to the West in 1842 and seems to have always had one foot firmly in China while, at the same [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | January 19th, 2018
 
I Am the Very Model: Gilbert and Sullivan and Light Opera I

It’s of some tribute to librettist W.S. Gilbert (1836-1911) and composer Arthur Sullivan (1842-1900) that 140 years after their first comic operas hit the stage, we can still find a great deal of humour in their works and many of [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | January 16th, 2018
 
At the Center of the Musical Universe George Frideric Handel II

When Ludwig, or Louis Spohr (1784-1859) died at the age of 75, Johannes Brahms lamented that the last of the great masters had died. This seems high praise indeed for a composer whose posthumous neglect is shockingly at odds with [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | January 15th, 2018
 
At the Center of the Musical Universe George Frideric Handel

George Frideric Handel (1685-1759) is consistently acknowledged as one of the greatest composers of his age. He contributed to virtually every vocal and instrumental genre in his time, and decisively invented and shaped the evolution of the English oratorio. Handel [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | January 8th, 2018
 
108 Desires of Purcell

In his opera King Arthur, the third act starts with a dramatic scene – Emmeline meets Oswald, who is ardently wooing her, but she’s frozen IN terror. Oswald, showing off, whips out his magic wand changes the entirety of England [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | January 7th, 2018
 
Lyricism and Percussionism

We associate John Cage with a number of different sound events – the percussion group that he took on tour around the West Coast in the late 1930s, random radio sounds from his work for 12 radios (Imaginary Landscape No. [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | January 3rd, 2018
 
Ring Bells! Sing Songs!: The Musical VI

Roaring onto the Broadway stage and changing the musical forever was Disney’s The Lion King, with music by Elton John. No musical had taken a children’s animation as its source and turning the fantasies of a cartoon into a performance [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | January 2nd, 2018
 
A Champagne Toast to 2018!

People across the globe celebrate the arrival of the New Year with a variety of delectable customs. In Spain, tradition dictates the eating of 12 grapes—washed down with a glass of Cava—with each stroke of the clock at midnight. In [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | January 1st, 2018