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  1. 2021 Listening Project - Jan 29

    Jan 29

    Haydn
    String Quartet No. 53 "The Lark"
    Emerson Quartet

    Good. I like the last movement in particular

    Charles Ives
    Symphony No. 4
    Chicago Symphony Orchestra
    Michael Tilson Thomas, conductor.

    I find this piece fascinating. The second movement is so noisy (in the sense of lots of different things going on). Then you have this really beautiful and more traditional 3rd "Fugue" movement
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  2. The Unknown Richard Strauss, Piano Concertos For the Left Hand

    In August of 2019, I wrote a post on my Blogspot Music Blog about music written specifically for the Left Hand. At that time I wrote the following:

    [...] Austrian pianist Paul Wittgenstein [had] his right arm amputated during the First World War. He devised novel techniques, including pedal and hand-movement combinations that allowed him to play chords previously regarded as impossible for a five-fingered pianist.

    A musician who enjoyed the company of several luminaries
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  3. 2021 Listening Project - Jan 27

    Chopin
    Nocturnes Op. 15.
    Maurizio Pollini, piano

    Also good, I think I prefer No. 2.

    Haydn
    String Quartet No. 43
    Emerson Quartet

    Another good quartet from Haydn. Not a "joke" finish, but still a fairly quiet one.

    Vivaldi
    Four Seasons: Autumn
    Simon Standage, violin
    The English Concert
    Trevor Pinnock, conductor

    The fast movements are familiar to me, the middle
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  4. 2021 Listening Project - Jan 25

    Chopin
    Nocturnes Op. 9
    Maurizio Pollini, piano

    I have a CD with all 19 Chopin Nocturnes played by Pollini (including the posthumous Op. 72). That seems like too many to absorb at one sitting, so I will try to listen to one opus per day. Today was Op. 19. I listened to each twice.

    I like these first three. When I've played this CD in the past, it's just been background music, where I was really only paying attention for the first minute or two. So Op. 91
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  5. 2021 Listening Project - Jan 23

    Brahms
    Arrangement of the 2nd movement from the String Sextet No. 2 Op. 18
    Emanuel Ax, piano

    Brahms apparently did the transcription himself, as a gift to Clara Schumann on her 41st birthday, but was never published in his lifetime.

    I like this, but not as much as the sextet version. Some parts work in the piano version, but other really don't (i particular I really miss the pizzicato in some sections). Nevertheless, enjoyable to listen to.
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