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  1. 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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  2. 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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  3. 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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  4. 2021 Listening Project - Jan 22 - Part 2

    Whoops, I forgot to include this one on Jan 22:

    Brahms
    String Sextet No. 1
    Violins: Isaac Stern, Cho-Liang Lin
    Violas: Jaime Laredo, Michael Tree
    Cellos: Yo-Yo Ma, Sharon Robinson

    I've owned this disc for a long time, and I really like this piece. I think I prefer it to the 2nd sextet, but it's a close call. I particularly like the 2nd movement.
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  5. 2021 Listening Project - Jan 22

    Charles Ives
    Holidays Symphony
    Chicago Symphony Orchestra
    Michael Tilson Thomas, conductor

    A big question for me with this piece (and other Ives' pieces) is how can we fully understand and appreciate what he is doing, unless we are familiar with all of his source material? I like the way that familiar tunes come in and out of "focus" in this piece, but I suspect that there is a *lot* going on here that I am missing because the source material is unfamiliar
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