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Beauty captivates the flesh
Beauty captivates the flesh, seeking permission to pass directly to the soul. — Simone Weil S. Weil, G Panichas (ed.) The Simone Weil Reader, New York, McKay, 1977, p. 378.
Copland on the integration of jazz into art music
American composer Aaron Copland discusses the influence of Jazz on his musical style: was a very important influence at one time. I wrote a Piano Concerto in 1927 which was largely based on jazz materials. Jazz, of course, is for us a very typical American musical expression, which we have not so successfully been able […]
Abstraction IV
Title: Abstraction IV Composer: Greg Smith Instrumentation: Cello and piano Product medium: PDF score and part SAMPLE:
Reverie II
Reverie II Composer: Greg Smith Instrumentation: Piano (left hand) Product medium: PDF score
Gramophone: no substitute for live performance
British conductor Thomas Beecham was not too impressed with early recording technology (the gramophone): It was put to him that for people who lived in remote districts, far from orchestral concerts, the gramophone was an alternative: "It is no alternative to this," he said, waving his arm towards the hall, where the orchestra was waiting […]
Stokowski’s orders
A letter from the conductor Leopold Stokowski to Sylvan Levin gives an insight into his sense of humour: Caro Maestro Illustre, Now that you have not a thing to do!!!!! Do you think you would have time to do me a favor and time the whole of Parsifal without cuts?  I suggest you do this […]
Pablo Casals’ obligation
“I am a very simple man. I am a man first, an artist second. My first obligation is to the welfare of my fellow man. I will endeavour to meet this obligation through music, since it transcends language, politics and national boundaries.” – Pablo Casals, Spanish cellist. Source: Accessed 22 Jan 2013.
A hundred violins may play softer than one
John Holmes “reiterates that only with a large group can you get a truly soft sound. Sure, a solo fiddle can hold its own against a hundred fiddles: a hundred fiddles are never a hundred times louder than a solo at the same dynamic, since there’s no such animal as “a same dynamic,” or even […]
The Precepts of the Lord give Joy to my Heart – Psalm 18 (19)
Title: The precepts of the Lord give joy to my heart Text: Psalm 18 (19): 8-11. R. c. Jn 6:68 Composer: Greg Smith Instrumentation: SATB and piano Product medium: PDF score and part Sample:    
Boyd Neel on Vaughan William’s Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis
Boyd Neel was the first conductor to record Vaughan William’s Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis in 1935. He wrote: I often feel that this wonderful work is perhaps the greatest of all achievements in string orchestral composition. Boyd Neel (1986) The Story of an Orchestra. London: Vox Mundi, p.22. Cited in: Holmes, John […]