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Huilunsoittaja

Music-Related Rave.

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Have you even experienced a time where you sorta left a composer alone, or didn't listen to a lot of their works, and now you come back to them and you love them anew? That's how I've been the last few days.

Glazunov!

Besides Prokofiev and Shostakovich, he's my first love. Whereas the other 2 are like brilliant new and exciting acquaintances (to put that lightly), Glazunov is now a dear old friend.

Let me just share with you why I'm such an advocate for him and his music, and why his music means so much to me personally.

I discovered him January 14, 2008, as a freshman in high school. I was in the car with my mom, and we had just come back from a flute lesson. Or had we? No, we actually stopped somewhere else for something, and were coming later than usual on the road. We had the radio on, switched to my favorite local one.

Note that. If we hadn't been in the car so late, all of this never would have happened. It was Providence.

There was a pretty song on the radio. I listened for a while, but I wasn't so entirely interested.
All of a sudden, it changed to a melody I was almost sure was Debussy! Either Clair de Lune for Orchestra, or Prelude to the Faun. But it didn't remain the same melody and changed, and I was confused.
I listened a little longer, becoming more interested in who it was. I couldn't figure it out! It sounded like Wagner at the climax, with this chromatic harmony, and augment chords and stuff, but it couldn't have possibly been Wagner, because it didn't sound like an overture I knew.
I was really listening carefully now, and getting my mom into it, who was driving.
Finally it ended, and I listened to the radio announcer speak.
"Lyric Poem by Alexander Glaz-"
What?
I thought the announcer said "Glaznov." I was proven wrong later.
Performance with the Moscow Symphony Orchestra.
That's all I picked up.
I held onto that name and piece for a while, and I told my brother I wanted it for my birthday, the particular CD with it on.

But guess what? I actually forgot about it! I really did!

I didn't get the CD on my birthday, and when my brother gave it to me as a late present, I was like "Oh, ok... yeah, I think I remember this."

I gave the whole CD a listen. It was the Naxos Label, holding Glazunov's Lyric Poem and some other Symphonic works.
It was quite like nothing I ever heard before.
My mom asked me how I liked it, I said, "Yeah, it's nice. It's really happy stuff." Yes! I actually said that. Not complete interest, but I already was picking something up from his musical character.

What did I do again? I left it a month, forgot it.

Then one day, I saw that CD again amongst my other stuff, and decided "How about I listen to it again" I had actually heard his name on the radio a few more times after that first time, so I remembered him.
This second hearing made all the difference.
I fell in love immediately. I ended up listening to that CD like 10 times in the space of a few days.

I actually started looking up stuff about him.
Wow! He was Russian? He was born the same date as Sibelius? Oh! He lived well into the 20th Century?? Ok, this must be normal late Romantic, 20th Cent. style music. He must be really famous too.
(I was wrong both ways , but I didn't discover this until half a year later)

The 2nd CD I got was actually for my mom for Mother's Day. One of the works on the CD (also Naxos), was something we heard on the radio too, called "Finnish Fantasy" where he used the Lutheran anthem "A Mighty Fortress is our God." I thought that was an amazing thing to do! Why would a Russian composer care about little old Finland?? Or even something Protestant! I'm Finnish, and Protestant! He would have liked me?
Well, I ought to like him too, I said to myself.

Well, after that point, I was really really addicted, and I bought more and more CDs, and looked him up on the radio listings like everyday to find new works I couldn't buy but could hear for free.

And that's my story. But the story continues! I haven't forgot him, nor has my love waned for his music. I now consider myself an expert on his entire oeuvre. You can ask me almost anything about him, and likely I'll know.

I hope this was of some interest to those here who have become interested in him too.

OH! And then you know what I did?

I made this in honor of him some years later:
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Updated Jun-09-2011 at 22:03 by Huilunsoittaja

Categories
Classical Music , Personal , Composers

Comments

  1. emiellucifuge's Avatar
    Nice!

    Dvorak for me! The 9th was my introduction, plain and simple. He was the composer I read about, explored most of his works and had him in my thoughts continuosly. He began to feel like a friend, and listening to his music I felt like I was staring into his soul and had a direct connection.

    Then, I took a long break from him while I was exploring further into everything else.
    Recently I started listening to him, and today rented two biographies from the library.
    If there was enough time to do this with every composer of note my life would be complete.
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  2. Sid James's Avatar
    Interesting story. I remember having the same experience with the late Henryk Gorecki's symphony of sorrowful songs when hearing it on radio back in the '90's. I liked it so much, I got the cd, and my mother who I was living with at the time loved it from the first listen as well. My younger sister was a bit jaded by this work, because her teacher in primary school apparently played it ad nauseum whilst the class was meditating or something. So she was kind of bored to death of it (overexposure?).

    Anyway, I've only got Glazunov's saxophone concerto and a bit of "The Seasons" on cd. Given your enthusiasm for this guy, i'll have to give these a re-listen soon...
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