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Pavel Kolesnikov on historical instruments
For me, one of the ultimate goals of a performance is to make pieces come across as something new, something unexpected and fresh. As soon as you start working with historical instruments, you are jeopardising this aspect. It is very difficult to get away from that; some performers manage it magically, but I don’t see […]
It is cruel that music should be so beautiful
“It is cruel, you know, that music should be so beautiful.  It has the beauty of loneliness and of pain: of strength and freedom.  The beauty of disappointment and never-satisfied love.  The cruel beauty of nature, and everlasting beauty of monotony.” Benjamin Britten
String ensemble
The background to Bolero
Ravel’s infamous Boléro was somewhat created by chance: Shortly before Ravel left for America, the Russian dancer Ida Rubinstein had asked him for a ballet to be based on orchestrations of parts of Albéniz’s Iberia. To this he agreed; with so much on his plate he was not anxious to undertake further commitments for wholly original composition. […]
Mahler’s bowing instructions
Rachmaninoff played his Third Concerto in January 1909 in New York, conducted by Gustav Mahler. Rachmaninoff recalled the rehearsal: Suddenly, Mahler, who had conducted this passage a tempo, tapped his desk: “Stop!  Don’t pay any attention to the difficult bowing marked in your parts. … Play the passage like this,” and he indicated a different […]
Give Thanks to the Lord – Psalm 105 (106)
Title: Give thanks to the Lord Text: Psalm 105 (106) Composer: Greg Smith Instrumentation: SATB and piano/organ Product medium: PDF score and parts SAMPLE:    
Wisdom is perishable
"Wisdom is perishable. Unlike information or knowledge, it cannot be stored in a computer or recorded in a book. It expires with each passing generation." – Sid Taylor Cited at: Quotations book  
Gershwin conducting
Isaac Goldberg described Gershwin’s enthusiasm when conducting: He conducted not just with his baton, but with his cigar, his shoulders, his hips, his eyes and whatnot.  Nothing but a sense of propriety keeps him from leaping over the footlights and getting right into the show himself. Cited in: Greenberg, Rodney (2008) George Gershwin.  New York: Phaidon […]
The source of inspiration
For me, inspiration comes from a bunch of places: desperation, deadlines… A lot of times ideas will turn up when you’re doing something else. And, most of all, ideas come from confluence — they come from two things flowing together. They come, essentially, from daydreaming. . . . And I suspect that’s something every human […]
Harmann on orchestration
“To orchestrate is like a thumbprint. I can’t understand having someone else do it. It would be like someone putting color to your paintings.” – Bernard Hermann on orchestration. Hall, Roger L., A Guide to Film Music, p. 43.  Cited at Wikipedia.