Monthly Archives: January 2010

Analyzing Debussy and Haydn, SLSO Playing Ravel and Berlioz.

While I’m taking a break from analyzing Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune, thought I’d make a quick post. It’s nice to get out of the A/V room in the library for a few minutes to see the light of day (though I was hoping to experience it more literally- I’m sick of this weather). It’s also good (though minimally) to get away from the lush C#13 chords and the planing. Sometimes listening to other students bang around and make noise in the computer lab really hits the spot. I feel like there’s only so much beauty that my ears can take before I have to get away from the score and let it sink in for a while.

I’ve been spending most of my time sitting around in the library, analyzing Debussy and Haydn, which are, surprisingly, quite complementary when studied in close proximity to each other. Yesterday was  Prélude and Symphony No. 94, “Surprise”. Today, it’s Prélude again, and Symphony No. 104, “London”. Tonight, I begin looking at Nocturnes (no pun intended). I suppose it’s safe to say that this is probably the best semester of my life. In the past few weeks, I’ve generally been happier, more productive, more positive, and more focused than at any other point in my pursuit of music.

A quick concert update before I get back to work. Last week, I had the pleasure of seeing the SLSO play Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G major and Symphonie fantastique. Both pieces were great, especially the Ravel. It’s such a fun, jazzy work- I always wholly enjoy myself when I’m listening to it. The second movement is just amazing, and it was played beautifully by the soloist, Ingrid Fliter. Symphonie fantastique was pretty good, though I was a bit disappointed with the first three movements, the third especially, which was downright boring. The final two movements, however, were marvelous. I feel like when the SLSO unleashes the brass and winds on a powerhouse such as Symphonie fantastique, they really do some damage. I’ve rarely been more excited, expecially in the final seconds of the piece. Overall, the concert was definitely worth it.

Tomorrow, I’ll be going to see the SLSO do Pines of Rome and Mozart Piano Concerto No. 18. There are two more works on the program, a Berlioz overture and something else. I need to get back to work, so unfortunately  I’m not going to be able to look at the program for the sole purpose of re-posting it on this blog.