Lorsque, à la fin de sa vie, Louis Bréhier (1868-1951) fit entrer Byzance dans la prestigieuse collection de L'Évolution de l'Humanité en publiant Le Monde byzantin en trois volumes, Vie et mort de Byzance, Les Institutions du monde byzantin, La Civilisation byzantine, il achevait par une ample synthèse une oeuvre d'historien que l'on découvre encore avec admiration. …
This program offers three lively, colorful, and captivating orchestral works by two United States composers, born almost a century apart. These pieces exhibit the fruitful exchange and flow of musical material between North and South America that has long played a role in popular music, apparent not only in commercial song and dance music using Latin American melodies and rhythms but also in early jazz and blues where tango rhythms are so often heard, as in W. C. Handy's St. Louis Blues. And both Gottschalk in the 1850s, close to the beginning of a creative American musical tradition, and Gould in the 1950s, when such a tradition had flowered considerably, show a combination of seriousness of approach with a popular touch.
This disc includes all the music for string quartet written by Louis Andriessen, recorded by the Schoenberg Quartet in the years before the group dissolved in 2009. Even in the early Quartet in two movements, written when Andriessen was 18, the composer's inventiveness and quirky sense of humor peek through. It's an affable piece, entirely professional and assured, with enough individuality to be recognizably the work of a composer who has something to say and the wherewithal to say it.
Though held in high regard by many of his colleagues as being worthy of a pedestal next to Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven in the pantheon of Western music’s great composers, Ludwig (Louis) Spohr (1784–1859), along with Christoph Read more Le nozze di Figaro and Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde were composed during Spohr’s lifetime. Eight years younger than Rossini and 13 years Schubert’s junior, Spohr wrote music that is Janus-like, specifically it looks to the formalism and clarity of the Classicists and at the same time sows the seeds of Romanticism via its harmonic and structural experimentation.
Even though Louis Spohr lived well into the Romantic era, and was a contemporary of such cutting-edge figures as Beethoven, Berlioz, Paganini, Liszt, and Wagner, his music stayed remarkably Classical in form and substance, and sounded conservative in style, even late in his career. It shouldn't be surprising to find that his Symphony No. 1 in E flat major, Op. 20 (1811), would sound a lot like Mozart's Symphony No. 39 in E flat major, K. 543; or that the Symphony No. 2 in D minor, Op. 49 (1820), while somewhat more advanced and original in symphonic development, would sound no more radical than Weber, and even evoke Haydn in its droll Finale.
Alexei Lubimov is a Russian pianist who also plays fortepiano and harpsichord. In his early years he studied at the Moscow Central Music School, and in 1963, entered the Moscow Conservatory, where he studied with Heinrich Neuhaus and Lew Naumov. He developed a strong interest in Baroque music and 20th century modernist works. Lubimov gave the Soviet premieres of many western compositions, including pieces by Charles Ives, Arnold Schoenberg, John Cage, Terry Riley, Pierre Boulez, and Karlheinz Stockhausen, which brought censorship from the Soviet authorities. For a number of years he was prevented from traveling outside the Soviet Union. Turning to his interest in period instruments and authentic performance practices, he founded the Moscow Baroque Quartet and co-founded the Moscow Chamber Academy with Tatiana Grindenko.