Topic: Identity

Workshop day on 18th April:

Johann Sebastian Bach was born 1685 in the small town Eisenach (Germany). His whole family was musical and played organ in churches or instruments as court chamber musicians. Johann Sebastian learned the piano and the harpsichord (a similar instrument to the piano). He had to compose a lot of music every week, so sometimes he would use the same musical idea in different pieces. Below are four different versions of the Adagio we heard  (three out of the four versions are more similar than one of them. Can you ‘hear’ the odd one out?)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_fCDV4Mw8W8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZRUE71F98o&feature=youtu.be&t=3m7s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zc5lhK00GSg

The Australian composer Ross Edwards was born 1943. He composes music for big orchestras, choirs, for children, and film. In his music he tries to link with his Australian roots, the cultural diversity of his home country and its natural environment. Today’s piece is called “Yanada”
which is the Aboriginal word for “moon”:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PdCENFn2qs

Henriette Renié (1875-1956), who lived in France, was eight when she fell in love with the harp and wanted to learn it. She was too short to reach the pedals, so her father invented extended pedals for her. Henriette not only was an excellent performer, she also composed a lot of music for harp and taught many young students. Today’s piece is called “Contemplation” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ise2ohZk3Fwd

Jean Françaix (1912-1997) was a French pianist and composer. Not surprising, a lot of his compositions feature the piano. But today’s piece is slightly different. It is a movement out of a collection of movements called “L’Horloge de Flore” – A Musical Flower Clock.  The fourth movement, Nyctanthe du Malabar, (Nyctanthus arbor-tristis) describes a nigh-flowering jasmine, a small tree that grows in southeast Asia. The blooms are incredibly fragrant. Jean composed a dance for this flower, with a specific rhythm. The dance is called “rumba”. Find a recording here:
https://youtu.be/97ENww2uDJU?t=7m1s

Astor Piazzolla was born 1921 in Argentina to Italian parents, they all moved to New York when Astor was 4, before returning to Argentina when he was 15 years old. Astor played the bandoneon and became famous for composing tangoes. Here the original version of today’s tango “oblivion”

Additional tracks on 20th April

Bach also wrote solo pieces for the cello. Her wrote six sets of “Suites”, each Suite includes a number of different types of dances. Even though they are not meant for dancing. They stand for different characters. Here is a recording by one of the most famous cellists, Yo-Yo Ma, when he played the first Suite in the Royal Albert Hall in London.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rGgG-0lOJjk

Ernst Bloch (1880-1959) was born in Switzerland who moved to the United States. His parents were Jewish and Ernst reflected his Jewish culture in his compositions. Today’s piece “Nigun” can be performed with different instruments in different arrangements. Here is one example for solo violin and orchestra:

Workshop day on 19th April:

Samuel Barber (1910-1981) was an American composer. He started to learn the piano when he was 6 years old and composed his first piece when he was 7. Today’s music is part of his Summer Music:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FoDpIIP1Bc

Maurice Ravel (1875-1937) was a French composer. His parents were of Basque-Spanish  heritage, and Maurice included a lot of musical ideal from his background into his compositions.  Today’s piece his from his  version  of “Mother Goose”. It was written for orchestra, but different instruments like to play versions of it. Version for big orchestra:
 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5U7osEigQZM
Piano version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AzG-v85XvH0

Malcom Arnold (1921-2006) was an English composer, who wrote a lot of film music. Today we had the first of his Three shanties : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=auXQplcLJfU

Paul Hindemith (1885-1963) was born in Germany  and moved later to the USA. Today’s piece is part of his “Kleine Kammermusik” (Little Chamber music) op. 24. No. 2  Movement 1  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ke87nxWjQMg (up to min 2:49)

Antonín Dvořák (1841-1904) was a Czeck composer who loved integrating folk music into his compositions. Today included one of his Slavonic dances: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sMuey1VQ3LY

Jean Françaix (1912-1997) was a French pianist and composer. Not surprising, a lot of his compositions feature  the piano. But today’s piece is slightly different. It is a Quintet (a piece
for 5 instruments)  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuCAvvnurqk

György Ligeti (1923-2006) was Hungarian.  From his piece Six Bagatelles for Wind Quintet, here are clips for movement 1, Allegro con spirit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1GBrT0q7j0 and movement 2, Rubato. Lamentoso:  https://youtu.be/txMWXvD8kL4?t=1m25s  (to min 4:26)

Astor Piazzolla was born 1921 in Argentina to Italian parents, they all moved to New York when Astor was 4, before returning to Argentina when he was 15 years old. Astor played the bandoneon and became famous for composing tangoes. Here is Piazolla playing his one of his own tango’s: https://youtu.be/DPGuzDIjMIw?t=3m5s
And here is a verion by Grace Jones:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nIN3IE3DHqc