Using Chopin and Schumann, as well as various contemporaries, as the basis for an examination of the Romantic generation, this class seeks to bring this most fascinating and unruly epoch into focus. Beyond the context of the first half of the nineteenth century, this class also explores the continued resonance of this repertory today.
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Pioneering a style of unparalleled versatility and expressiveness, Haydn, Mozart, and the early Beethoven created a musical repertory of elegance, wit, optimism, and logic that remains the benchmark of Western musical culture to this day. This class discusses the evolution and achievements of such genres as the Haydn symphonies and quartets, the Mozart concertos and operas, and the early Beethoven instrumental works in historical, social, and musical contexts. Register Here. Download Syllabus
The Beethoven symphonies and concertos form the central core of Western Classical music; each of the nine symphonies and seven concertos comprise a separate world, from heroism and tragedy to the sublimity to brilliant elan. This seminar uses both archival and contemporary performances on CD and DVD to offer entertaining and illuminating perspectives, historical and social, on this perennially fascinating repertory. Register here.
Music in film, both specially composed and/or appropriated, often determines the character and emotional gravity of the greatest films. Spend six dreary winter afternoons immersing yourself in some of the best movie scores with recordings, video, and expert commentary by John Gibbons. Register online now. Tentative Syllabus
Some recordings we like, and a app.
“On December 22, 1808, Beethoven himself rented a hall in Vienna and promoted the concert to end all concerts: the debut, over four hours, of three of his greatest works .. And yes, it was a fiasco. But imagine: It was as if Orson Welles premiered Citizen Kane, The Magnificent Ambersons, and Touch of Evil on the same night — with The Lady from Shanghai thrown in for good measure.” (Greg Mitchell)
A delightful development in the world of opera video has occurred. Two (!) versions of Paul Hindemith’s 1926 opus Cardillac have recently appeared. I make the assumption that even serious opera fans may not be acquainted with this fascinating piece, except in Germany.