Music & Culture

Classical Music Posts

Johannes Brahms (left) was noticeably moved when he heard Antonin Dvorak's (right) music for the first time. CREDIT: Wikimedia Commons

Passing The Baton: Brahms And Dvorak

Was Johannes Brahms as sweet and comforting as the lullaby that bears his name? Actually, as conductor Manfred Honeck told the New York Times, “There was nothing cozy about Brahms.” He never had students in the formal sense. Brahms’s manner was described as “not encouraging,” when younger composers would beg for his attentions. But Antonin Dvorak didn’t have to beg. Continue Reading Passing The Baton: Brahms And Dvorak

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Passing The Baton: Bernstein To Alsop

Many of us admire our musical idols from afar – maybe through keepsakes like concert ticket stubs, autographs or posters taped to our walls. Marin Alsop had two posters up in her New York City bedroom growing up – one of the Beatles and the other of the man who inspired her to become a conductor – Leonard Bernstein. Bernstein ended up becoming more than the man on her poster – her biggest hero became her mentor, teaching her how to be the “messenger of the composer” and passing along his gifts for storytelling.  Continue Reading Passing The Baton: Bernstein To Alsop

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Antonio Salieri, left, to Victor Borge, passing the baton down a line of a century of master keyboardists. CREDIT: via Wikamedia Commons

Passing The Baton: A Century Of Keyboardists From Salieri To Borge

A Venetian with a passion for books and sugar, brought to Vienna at age 15 by a kindly patron. A Hungarian steeped in Roma music and religion. A native of a working-class neighborhood in Glasgow, appointed a church organist at the age of 10. A member of a highly cultured Jewish family in Copenhagen. Four very different personalities–Antonio Salieri, Franz Liszt, Frederic Lamond and Borge Rosenbaum–linked by education. In fact, they form a direct line of mentors and protégés, spanning almost exactly a century, from Vienna of the 1820s to London of the 1920s. Continue Reading Passing The Baton: A Century Of Keyboardists From Salieri To Borge

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