George Gershwin: Teach me your Art!

There are a number of celebrated anecdotes going around that George Gershwin habitually asked famous composers to give him lessons. Apparently he wanted composition lessons from Edgard Varèse, leader of the New York musical avant-garde. Although Varèse acknowledged Gershwin’s talent, [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | October 13th, 2017
Farewell dear Brother! Capriccio BWV 992

Johann Sebastian Bach and his older brother Johann Jacob shared a special bond. Their mother Elisabeth Bach died on 3 May 1694, and their father Ambrosius Bach followed her into the grave on 20 February 1695. Orphaned, both boys were [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | October 11th, 2017
Vivaldi’s Internationally Renowned Orphanage Orchestra

Imagine you’re a poor single woman in eighteenth century Venice. You have no family, no fortune, and your career options are – obviously – limited. Every year during Carnival, hundreds of wealthy men descend on Venice, busy taking their Grand [...] more >>

by Emily E. Hogstad | October 2nd, 2017
Is it time for nontraditional casting in Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess ?

However you’d like to look at it, George Gershwin was unique! Freely mixing and combining classical and popular music styles, his works have been heralded as representing “an exciting new American musical art.” Yet when it came to Porgy and [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | September 22nd, 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
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