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To welcome in the first day of #spring2015 , here is a wonderful performance of my pick of the most important piece of music written in the 20th Century, The Rite of Spring by Igor Stravinsky. 

Monumental, earth-shattering, riot-inducing, world-changing Art of the highest order, it simply must be experienced. For further details, see my post from 2013 commemorating the 100th anniversary of its infamous premier: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+SonnyWilliamson/posts/XYLKcmQ7M28

Hold on to your hats and enjoy! 
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Stravinsky's Rite of Spring

In this 2013 BBC Proms performance, Les Siècles Orchestra perform Stravinsky's Rite of Spring (“Le sacre du printemps”), with  François-Xavier Roth at the podium. The orchestra, from France, was formed in the summer of 2003 by François-Xavier Roth.

As its website says:

With a vast period-instrument collection at its disposal, spanning the baroque, classical, romantic and modern eras, the orchestra’s repertoire is notably wide in range. Les Siècles is one of a small number of ensembles to employ period and modern instruments, playing each repertoire on appropriate instruments. Its flexible and historically informed work delivers a unique strand of creative programming.

The piece premiered at Paris’s Théâtre des Champs-Élysées on May 29, 1913; it caused quite a lot of controversy, Wikipedia notes:

It was written for the 1913 Paris season of Sergei Diaghilev's Ballets Russes company; the original choreography was by Vaslav Nijinsky, with stage designs and costumes by Nicholas Roerich. When first performed, at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées on 29 May 1913, the avant-garde nature of the music and choreography caused a sensation and a near-riot in the audience. Although designed as a work for the stage, with specific passages accompanying characters and action, the music achieved equal if not greater recognition as a concert piece, and is widely considered to be one of the most influential musical works of the 20th century.

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Spring officially begins in the northern hemisphere with the March or vernal equinox at 22;45 UTC, or here in Toronto at 18:45, or 6:45 p.m. EDT. An enjoyable,, meaningful and green spring to one and all.

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More at http://perryjgreenbaum.blogspot.ca/2015/03/stravinskys-rite-of-spring.html

#Spring2015 #Stravinsky #RitesofSpring  

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In honour of the death of Terry Pratchett, here is the piece of music he wished was playing when he finally passed away. It's a motet by renaissance English composer Thomas Tallis, written for forty (yes, forty) voices singing independent melodies, intertwining in a contrapuntal weave of pure beauty. If you're already feeling teary at the loss of Sir Terry, it might be best to grab some tissues. 

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This is instantly one of the greatest performances I've ever seen. I promise you you will never have seen classical music played this way before. Ligeti was a genius. Hats off to Simon Rattle, +barbara hannigan and +London Symphony Orchestra for pulling it off with such style.

#music #classicalmusic

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Ever been too afraid of the rules of etiquette to attend a classical concert? You might be surprised to find that they're not quite what you think. Allow me to elucidate in my latest piece for the +Ticketmaster UK blog.

#classicalmusic   #music   #blog   #blogmaster  

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What more is there to be written about Beethoven's 9th Symphony? I'm not sure, but I gave it a go anyway. My latest piece for the +Ticketmaster UK blog. 

#music   #classicalmusic   #beethoven   #blog   #blogmaster  

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Nicki Minajs' "Anaconda" gets a classical makeover, with surprisingly brilliant results. For what it's worth, I don't have an underlying distain for pop music as a rule but I do happen to loath Anaconda (on the basis that it's shit).

What's more, it's really difficult to make pop-culture crossovers with classical music successful without being twee or pandering or dumbing down, whereas this piece legitimately works. It's almost like a lost movement from Stravinsky's L'Histoire du Soldat, which is all kinds of awesome. Full props to the arranger and performers. 

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Take an orchestra, make them eat an insanely hot chilli, watch them play a tango. Hilarity ensues. 

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Ever wondered what the deal is with opera? Allow me to elucidate. 

This is my latest piece as the classical music blogmaster for the +Ticketmaster UK blog. If you've got a notification it's because you've either expressed an interest this little venture or I think you might like it. If you want out, let me know. Similarly, if you were not notified but would like to be in future, either plus one or comment (or both!) to let me know. 

#classicalmusic   #music   #opera   #blogmaster  
The Thing About Opera - Opera, it must be said, is a strange beast. Though falling ostensibly under the broader classical music umbrella, it really is a genre, indeed a unique artistic form, unto itself.... http://ow.ly/2OIfvF

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I am now the official classical music blogmaster for +Ticketmaster. Yep, they've asked me to go to classical concerts, write about classical music and generally enthuse about it on the internet. I know, what on earth made them think I'd be suitable for that, right? ;-) 

Check out my first post. I'll now be posting each as they go up. Let me know if you want in on a notification circle. 

#classicalmusic   #music   #blog   #blogmaster  
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