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Category: classical

Thursday, September 14th

more

Kaija Saariaho (1952-), Petals (1988; cello and electronics); Imke Frank (cello) and Gary Berger (live electronics), live, Switzerland (Winterthur), 2011

 

Wednesday, September 13th

another take

John Luther Adams (1953-), The Light Within (2007); Late Music Ensemble, live, England (York), 2015

 

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lagniappe

random sights

other day, Chicago (Columbus Park)

Saturday, September 9th

Need a break from listening to yourself?

Kaija Saariaho (1952-), Nocturne for solo violin (1994)
Alexi Kenney (violin), live, New York, 2016

 

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lagniappe

reading table

John Ashbery (July 28, 1927-September, 3, 2017)

Whatever we’re dealing with catches us
in mid-reconsideration. It’s beautiful,
my lord, just not made to be repeated,
that’s all.

***

It was a moment, what can I say.

—John Ashbery (1927-), “A Breakfast Radish,” “Domani, Dopodomani” (fragments), Breezeway (2015)

Thursday, September 7th

another take

Morton Feldman (1927-1986; MCOTD Hall of Fame), Rothko Chapel (1971); Markus Creed (cond.), SWR Vokalensemble (Vocal Ensemble), et al., live, Germany (Cathedral of Speyer, Schwetzinger), 2017

 

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lagniappe

art beat: yesterday, Art Institute of Chicago

Paul Gauguin (1848-1903), Cup Decorated with the Figure of a Bathing Girl, 1887-88 (Gauguin: Artist as Alchemist, through September 10th)

*****

reading table

John Ashbery (July 28, 1927-September, 3, 2017)

What will it all be like in five years’ time
when you try to remember?

—”For John Clare” (fragment)

Wednesday, September 6th

one of the most absorbing pieces I know

Morton Feldman (1927-1986; MCOTD Hall of Fame), Rothko Chapel (1971); Ensemble Intercontemporain, live, Paris, 2017

 

(Rothko Chapel, located in Houston, reportedly was not damaged by Harvey.)

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lagniappe

reading table

John Ashbery (July 28, 1927-September, 3, 2017)

. . . as though wondering
whether forgetting
The whole thing might not, in the end, be the only solution.

—Soonest Mended (fragment)

*****

random sights

yesterday, Chicago (Columbus Park)

Tuesday, September 5th

soundtrack to a dream

John Luther Adams (1953-), The Light Within (2007); Faculty & Fellows, Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams, Mass., 2016

 

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lagniappe

reading table

John Ashbery (July 28, 1927-September, 3, 2017)

The bad news is the ship hasn’t arrived;
the good news is it hasn’t left yet.

—He Who Loves And Runs Away (fragment; Planisphere, 2009)

*****

random sights

this morning, Chicago (Columbus Park)

Thursday, August 24th

never enough

Frederic Chopin (1810-1849), Prelude No. 15 in D flat major (“Raindrop”); Friedrich Gulda (1930-2000), piano

 

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lagniappe

reading table

dragonfly—
flying two feet,
then two feet more

—Kobayashi Issa, 1763-1827 (translated from Japanese by David G. Lanoue)

Monday, August 21st

more

Anna Thorvaldsdottir (1977-), In the Light of Air (2013/2014); International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), live, New York, 2014

 

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lagniappe

musical thoughts

Suppose that, for the rest of your listening life, you had two options. One: You could only listen to things you’d never heard before. Two: You could never listen to anything new. Which would you choose?

Saturday, August 19th

mysterious, adj. Exciting wonder, curiosity, or surprise while baffling efforts to comprehend or identify. E.g., Anna Thorvaldsdottir’s Sequences.

Anna Thorvaldsdottir (1977-), Sequences (bass flute, bass clarinet, baritone saxophone, contrabassoon), 2016; International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), live, New York, 2016

 

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lagniappe

reading table

in the big rain
gushing down
little butterfly

—Kobayashi Issa, 1763-1827 (translated from Japanese by David G. Lanoue)

Monday, August 14th

This piece, in over forty years of listening, has never—not once—let me down. And this performance, which I encountered last night, is among the strongest I’ve heard.

Johann Sebastian Bach, Suite No. 5 in C minor for Unaccompanied Cello
Mischa Maisky, live, 1991

 

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lagniappe

reading table

Unable are the Loved to die
For Love is Immortality,
Nay, it is Deity –

Unable they that love – to die
For Love reforms Vitality
Into Divinity.

—Emily Dickinson (1830-1886), 951 (Franklin)

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