Inspiration

 
Claude Debussy French Music without Sauerkraut

Claude Debussy’s friend Paul Dukas candidly wrote “the strongest influence to which Debussy submitted was that of the littérateurs, not that of the musician.” And while most of us have no problems describing Debussy as an “Impressionist,” a term originating [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | March 18th, 2018
 
Idylls for String Quartet

When we think of an ‘idyll’ we think of a peaceful and happy time. In music this doesn’t all have to be set in the happy land of major, we need that darker minor side to set the major into [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | March 16th, 2018
 
At the Center of the Musical Universe Vincenzo Bellini III

Here is what Robert Schumann had to say about Carl Czerny’s Fantasies Brillantes on Original Themes Op. 434, “A greater bankruptcy of imagination than that demonstrated in Mr. Czerny’s newest creation could hardly exist. One should force the esteemed composer [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | March 12th, 2018
 
The Voice as Pure Instrument

If there are two words that you cannot imagine in a row, it’s ‘coloratura’ and ‘concerto,’ but Russian composer Reinhold Glière wrote such a piece: his 1942 Concerto for Coloratura Soprano and Orchestra in F Minor, Op. 82. This work [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | March 9th, 2018
 
At the Center of the Musical Universe Vincenzo Bellini II

Clara Schumann wrote in her diary, “A woman is not expected to have any desire to compose.” However, she clearly had the desire, and more importantly, the ability to do so. For a variety of reasons she decided to stop [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | March 5th, 2018
 
At the Center of the Musical Universe Vincenzo Bellini

Princess Cristina Trivulzio Belgiojoso certainly had a flair for the dramatic! Married at the age of 16 she was considered the richest heiress in Italy, and after separating from her husband she set up her Paris salon. And on 31 [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | February 26th, 2018
 
Destination Dublin

We associate Dublin, and, perhaps, all of Ireland with folk music. Yet, it has a distinguished set of classical composers beginning early in the modern era. Composers such as John Field, Charles Villiers Stanford, and Hamilton Harty started in Dublin [...] more >>

by Maureen Buja | February 23rd, 2018
 
Paul Wittgenstein The Romantic Virtuoso

While Maurice Ravel and Richard Strauss have received the highest accolades in the historiography of classical music, the contemporary musical world of Paul Wittgenstein was numerously populated by a host of highly talented composers and performers. And a commission from [...] more >>

by Georg Predota | February 21st, 2018