Quote of The Week

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Kingsley Amis


Music Workshop at Stony Brook

The OLLI Fall program at Stony Brook University include the continuation of our workshop “Classical Music: Themes and Variation, Part II.” New schedule: Mondays 1 pm to 2:15 pm starting on September 25 in Harriman 137 (see campus map on main university web site). Registration is now closed. If you have suggestions or comments please write to me at davidbouchier5@gmail.com

Classical Music: Themes and Variations Part 2
OLLI Fall 2017

Session four: October16


Outline of this session

Conclusion of the Romantic Concerto from last week, with examples from seven more composers, followed by an introduction to the theme of Nature’s Music.”

The Romantic Concerto (continuation)

Mendelssohn: Violin concerto no. 2 in e
Brahms: Violin concerto in D
Dvorak: Cello concerto in b
Saint Saens: Piano concerto in g
Saint Saens: Cello concerto no. 1 in a
Tchaikovsky: Piano concerto no. 1 in b-flat
Tchaikovsky: Violin concerto in D
Elgar: Cello concerto in e
Elgar: Violin concerto in b
Rachmaninoff: Piano concerto no. 2 in c

Nature’s Music

Fréderic Delius: On Hearing the First Cuckoo in Spring
Ottorino Respighi: The Birds
Ralph Vaughan Williams: Lak Ascending
Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 6 “Pastoral” – 1st movement
Sir Edward Elgar: Woodland Interlude from Caractacus
Antonin Dvorak: In Nature’s Realm
George Butterworth: The Banks of Green Willow
Fréderic Delius: In a Summer Garden
Ferde Grofe: Daybreak from the Grand Canyon Suite
Claude Debussy: Dialogue of wind and sea from La Mer
Benjamin Britten: Daybreak from Four Sea Interludes
Georges Bizet: The Pearl Fishers (duet)
Jean Sibelius: The Oceanides
Felix Mendelssohn: Fingal’s Cave or the Hebrides Overture
Bedrich Smetana: The Moldau from Ma Vlast
Claude Debussy: Nuages (clouds)
Edvard Grieg: Spring Rain
Fréderic Chopin: Raindrop Prelude
Edward Macdowell: Woodland Sketches – Autumn
Alexander Glazunov: The Four Seasons – Autumn
Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 6 “Pastoral” – 4th movement “The Storm”
Jacques Offenbach: Ballet of the snowflakes from Le voyage dans la lune.

Tentative Outline of the Workshop

September 25: Introduction, and a brief history or western music from early times to the Viennese Classical period – Gregorian chant; medieval, renaissance and baroque music.

October 2: Orchestras and instruments.

October 9: The romantic concerto and the rise of the virtuoso.

October 16: Nature’s music – compositions inspired by elements of land, sea and sky.

October 23: Music and the visual arts.

October 30: Music from the dark side (spooky stuff for Halloween).

November 6: The role of the orchestral conductor (visiting speaker – a real conductor!)

November 13: Music and poetry (live performance, probably at Tabler Quad).

November 20: Thanksgiving break – no workshop meeting.

November 27: The pleasures of chamber music (with live music).

December 3: Classical music in the twentieth century: modernists and movies

Some useful musical terms

Adagio: slow movement or passage (often romantic or sad)
Allegro: quick, lively movement or passage
Atonal: not in any key (rather nasty)
Baroque: dominant style of music roughly from 1600-1750 (elaborate, complex)
Cadence: progression of chords leading to the end of a piece of music.
Cantata: a piece to be sung.
Chamber music: composed for a small group of instruments
Classical music: technically the style of the Vienna School, roughly 1750-1805 (Haydn, Mozart)
Concerto: any work for solo instrument with orchestra (usually violin or piano).
Fugue: an elaborate, complex, highly disciplined polyphonic composition for three or four parts.
Harmony: more than one note played at the same time but blending together.
Key: the set of notes chosen as the main material for a composition.
Libretto: the text of an opera.
Lied/lieder: short song based on a poem, popular in 19th century Germany (e.g.Schubert)
Madrigal: lyrical poem sung by several unaccompanied voices (16th/17th cent.)
Monophony: (Greek – “one sound”) a single melody, one note at a time (see “polyphony”)
Movement: self-contained division of a larger composition (see “symphony”).
Oratorio: sacred work sung by a choir without action, scenery or costumes.
Polyphony: two or more parts combined harmoniously but with different melodies.
Program Music: paints a picture or tells a story (e.g. Berlioz’s “Symphonie Fantastique”).
Romanticism: style of expressive music popular from 1805 to the early 20th century.
Scherzo: (Italian – “a joke”) a lively, amusing movement or piece.
Sonata/Sonata form: extended work for piano or solo instrument with piano accompaniment, in three or four movements. The form of each movement is clearly defined.
Suite: (French – “a series”) a cycle of pieces, often dances, popular in the Baroque period.
Symphony: an extended musical composition for orchestra, usually consisting of four movements, typically: 1. Long opening introducing themes; 2. slow movement, such as adagio; 3. minuet or scherzo with trio; 4.lively allegro, rondo or sonata conclusion.