Classical Masters

For people who love opera, ballet, and classical music. A place to relax and enjoy the soothing sound of the masters. (Incept date, 0401.10)

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Discussion Forum

Gregorian chants

Started by LuRob. Last reply by Joan Denoo Jul 7, 2016. 1 Reply

Do you like this style of plain chant?This is monody, no acccompaniment and no abrupt changes in the melody.Continue

Hindemith, Mathias Grunewald, the Nazis, &c.

Started by James M. Martin Jul 4, 2012. 0 Replies

When I was a bachelor at a…Continue

Virtual Choir 3.0 - Water Night

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Tony Carroll Apr 2, 2012. 1 Reply

Words may not suffice here.  The average choir may be ... what?  Thirty, maybe 50 for a medium ensemble, and a large orchestra chorus might go one or two hundred.  Worthy of note, Eric Whitacre's…Continue

Tags: Water Night, Virtual Choir, Eric Whitacre

For Christopher...

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Loren Miller Dec 16, 2011. 2 Replies

I sometimes like to think I have a way with words here and there.  Today, having learned of the death of Christopher Hitchens, I find the words coming in fits and starts, but any attempt at giving…Continue

Tags: Dmitri Shostakovich, Christopher Hitchens

Is Music Dangerous?

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Loren Miller Aug 10, 2011. 3 Replies

It was a few years ago when I attended a Cleveland Orchestra concert which included Dmitri Shostakovich’s Fourth Symphony.  Up to that time, I had been aware of his more popular works, such as his…Continue

Tags: Shostakovich Symphony No. 4, Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Stalin, Shostakovich

Eric Whitacre's Virtual Choir - Lux Aurumque

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Loren Miller Apr 5, 2011. 3 Replies

When is a choir not a choir ... yet still a choir?When is an ensemble not assembled, yet is assembled?Ask Eric Whitacre. Some time back, he was sent a link on YouTube of a woman, singing a single…Continue

Tags: YouTube, Lux Aurumque, Virtual Choir, Eric Whitacre

Eric Whitacre's Virtual Choir 2.0 - *** UPDATED ***

Started by Loren Miller Apr 5, 2011. 0 Replies

On 7 April, 2011, Eric Whitacre will release his latest Virtual Choir project, with the performance of his work, "Sleep."  This project involved the participation of no less than 2,051 voices from 58…Continue

Tags: YouTube, Sleep, Virtual Choir, Eric Whitacre

The Playlist Vault of Classical Masters on A|N

Started by Roy The Infidel. Last reply by Roy The Infidel Sep 22, 2010. 9 Replies

Archive of featured playlists on Classical Masters.Continue

Tags: masters, classical, playlist, vault

The OTHER Side of Eric Whitacre

Started by Loren Miller. Last reply by Loren Miller Sep 10, 2010. 2 Replies

Certainly, there is "Water Night," "Sleep," and the powerful "When David Heard."  To this day I shed tears listening to some of this stuff.And then ... there's Eric's OTHER side ... the side which…Continue

Conductors, Too

Started by James M. Martin. Last reply by Steve Snyder Jun 19, 2010. 16 Replies

I hope this group will welcome from time to time discussions of conductors, as in some circles they are almost the auteurs of the work, usually those who get the rosettes in the Penguin Guide.  But…Continue

Comment Wall


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Comment by Jaume on June 22, 2010 at 5:37pm
Richard, it's Schiller's text I had in mind, not Beethoven's music. I was only answering James' question ("I don't think the Ode to Joy is deity-specific, is it?") using what can actually be found in the text. I don't even claim that the Ode to Joy reflects Schiller's (and, a fortiori, Beethoven's) religious views.
Comment by Rich Goss on June 22, 2010 at 4:27pm
Jaume, about your reference to the Ode To Joy. I always pictured Beethoven as humanist rather than religious. He wrote some religious stuff but that was the zeitgeist of the time.

He was born during the American Revolution and influenced by it his whole life. He was into freedom and the individual more than God and religion. I think this love of freedom comes out in Fidelio, his only opera. The Leonora overtures all have a trumpet solo that depicts the arrival of freedom and liberation.

Beethoven, more than anybody, brought on the Romantic Period.
Comment by James M. Martin on June 19, 2010 at 1:22pm
Maybe we are swinging back around to our Mahler-versus-Bruckner debate. Someone once said, "Mahler spent his career looking for God; Bruckner had already found him."
Comment by Jaume on June 19, 2010 at 12:29pm
With the exception of opera...

There are other exceptions. The most famous one are the Carmina Burana (the original, not Carl Orff's), a collection of very irreligious songs made by members of the Catholic clergy.
Comment by Loren Miller on June 19, 2010 at 10:58am
With the exception of opera, probably so, James. I'm hardly encyclopedic as it comes to opera knowledge, but it's one area where religion didn't HAVE to be the topic of the text. I just dug into Handel's oeuvre and noted at least one oratorio where the Judeo-Christian god was not represented, being The Choice of Hercules, but I think you'd be hard-pressed to find other secular or non-Christian choral works through the 18th and 19th centuries.
Comment by James M. Martin on June 19, 2010 at 10:00am
Well, Jaume, I think I was leading up to another discussion: when atheists listen to great Christian (or other religious) music -- let's say, the Gardiner version of the Bach "St. Matthew's Passion" -- and enjoys the experience despite its religious message -- isn't it because the work is great music in and of itself? I mean, if the Deutsches Requiem were a hymn to the city landfill, would it not be just as great a masterpiece? Wouldn't we ignore the descriptions of supermarket poly bags and dead rats in traps, the occasional severed human hand and all manner of puke and excretia and appreciate such a work for its majesty of creation? I am only asking because I feel guilty listening to such pieces. But, now that I think about it, until the 20th century, many of what we now call "classical" music was religious in nature, wasn't it?
Comment by Jaume on June 19, 2010 at 4:30am
The Ode to Joy has references to Elysium (Greek), Cherubs and Seraphs (Biblic), a single god here, multiple gods there. I'd categorize its religious views as syncretic henotheism. If it's specific, it's to the Western culture, and to its Greek and Judeo-Christian roots.
Comment by James M. Martin on June 18, 2010 at 6:33pm
I just ordered a new "Missa Solemnis." Arkiv said that many conductors and orchestras have struggled with this work and only now have they "gotten it right." I cannot wait. I have an old Lp and a CD of it, but it always sounds a bit muddy and turgid to me, kind of like the Gulf. I've always thought the "Missa" was a hold-back on Ludwig's part because no man who can write some of his works and survive the childhood he had could be anything but an agnostic or an atheist. I don't think the Ode to Joy is deity-specific, is it?
Comment by Loren Miller on June 10, 2010 at 5:18am
How about Morten Lauridsen's "Lux Aeterna," which is a requiem after a fashion ... and some GORGEOUS music at that! Far as I'm concerned, the performance with the Los Angeles Master Chorale is the one to have!
Comment by Steve Snyder on June 10, 2010 at 2:32am
Roy, I haven't checked it yet, but, among my interests ... I'm an atheist fan of requiems. Have more than a dozen in my library, from Mozart (Boston Baroque a must-listen) to Schnittke and even beyond (Balada's "atheist requieum," "No Res.")

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