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Nicholas Jackson
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Nicholas Jackson

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This is truly an amazing symphony, filled with dynamism and emotion.
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Nicholas Jackson

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Lepo Sumera is one of my favorite composers, combining brass, percussion and other instruments in new ways.
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Nicholas Jackson

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Catch up with this week's program on the BSO Media Center. Listen to a concert preview or read this week's program notes produced by the BSO Publications staff or listen to an interview between Brian Bell and composer Avner Dorman. 

http://www.bso.org/MediaCenter#search/dorman
The BSO Media Center offers media content including podcasts, video exclusives, webTV, program notes and concert broadcasts by and for the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Boston Pops, Boston Symphony Chamber Players, Tanglewood Festival Chorus, Tanglewood Music Center, and other related ensembles.
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Listening to this piece that has great comments.  It begins somewhat like Mahler, somewhat like Bruckner.  Somebody said it sounds Russian.  Perhaps.
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His Symphonies are well loved, and in my collection

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Listening to Allan Pettersson this morning.  It is no wonder that such an accomplished trombonist and director as +Christian Lindberg is working to get Pettersson's work widely distributed.  This is a beautiful, poignant symphony.
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From Hungary, to England and now to the Czech Republic, our tour of European folk-inspired music in the concert hall continues next with the music of Leoš Janáček and his Rhapsody for Orchestra, Taras Bulba.  

I am glad his name has made it on to a GCAS playlist. His music is not that of a pivotal figure or that of an earth-shaking modernist like Stravinsky or Schoenberg, but in his own way, he created a unique sound that is instantly recognisable and is very much his own. Nobody before or after sounds quite like Janáček! Enjoy...
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I have what Marco Polo recorded, not as good performances as I wish,. The sound leaves something to be desired too. The music however is very much to my liking.

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One of the great chamber pieces, in my humble opinion.
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Listening again to El-Khoury today.
 
Daily Classical Music Post

The name of the month of March comes from ancient Rome; it is named for Mars, the god of war. My posts this month will have a battle or war theme.

http://grooveshark.com/s/Symphonie+Op+37+Les+Ruines+De+Beyrouth+III+Poetico/54U3Sx?src=5

The Franco-Lebanese composer Bechara El-Khoury (born 1957) has won many prizes for his (mainly symphonic) compositions. Although he left Lebanon in 1979, most of his works are about his homeland, particularly the Lebanese Civil War.

El-Khoury's Symphonie, Op. 37, composed in 1985, is subtitled "Les ruines de Beyrouth" (The ruins of Beirut). This is the third of his compositions inspired by the outbreak of the war in 1975; the first two are his Symphonic Poem No. 1, Op. 14 "Le Liban en flammes" (Lebanon in flames) and the Requiem, Op. 18 "À la mémoire des martyrs libanais de la guerre" (In memory of the Lebanese war martyrs), which were both written in 1980.

Gérald Hugon says of "Les ruins de Beyrouth": "The symphony was composed in 1985 and although it reflects the genre’s typical four-part scheme, the individual movements make no use of traditional structures or means of development. Instead, each has the air of a lyric poem, a mosaic of feelings which constantly contrasts a consideration of the tragic rift, a work of collective folly, with the artist’s intimate thoughts, man’s expression when confronted with the event in his existential solitude. Curiously enough, a certain stridency and the dramatic rôle allotted to silence are reminiscent of the twelve-tone Schoenberg of the 1930s, of Moses und Aron, but here the chromatic language is completely free. The first movement (206 bars), with its frequent tempo changes, is the most fully developed of the four, and is unified by an endlessly varied leitmotif on the clarinets. It goes far beyond anything else El-Khoury has written in its variety of soundscapes, its rapidly changing emotions, and the opposition created between internal revolt and expression of horrified meditation. The tormented atmosphere created by sombre chromaticisms and sudden tutti bursts from the brass ultimately fades into a desolate clarinet solo, scarcely coloured by discreet bassoon and horn interventions, a contemplation of disaster. The second movement, Misterioso in 5/4 time, acts as a scherzo (96 bars) and its choreographic nature can be glimpsed from time to time, although it is not free from dramatic gesture, as for example in the brief central section. The Poetico (68 bars) is the lyrical heart of the score, the poet’s voice, and the composer’s, far removed from the heavy atmosphere of the first part of the work. This is a translucent interlude rather than an ample slow movement. The Tragique finale (144 bars) comes back to earth and its music is both vehement and unpretentious: it could take a place alongside Shostakovich’s and MartinÛ’s memorials to places devastated by war. The concluding Lirico section, for strings alone, finishes in calm, like a ray of hope, on a D major chord."

My classical music post for today is the third movement of El-Khoury's Symphonie, Poetico.
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Interested in interdisciplinary (geography, anthropology, economics, political science, business) exploration of issues having to do with international development.  
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