Archive for Feb, 2015

Chopin around

While playing a game of Forbidden Land this evening, we had Arthur Rubenstein play a series of Chopin Nocturnes via Youtube. I listened out to see which would ‘change’ key. D flat major, B major x2, E major, A flat major, and E minor were up a semitone and thus altered in feel. F major, G minor, E flat major, and F minor did not shift.

The sequence can be found at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lIA9QNHsAf0 .

A whole New World

The score of Dvorak’s New World symphony is one of the first orchestral scores I explored in my teen years. The gestalt of the music with the one sharp key signature of E minor and G major in 3 of the movements was of an open bright score and the music went with this. Today I switched on the radio in the middle of the first movement. Familiar themes but it was darker; there were lots of flats around, filling in the aural page, filtering the sunlight. Heavier music. Is it a whole new world? Or simply a shaded version of the one I knew? I shall explore it. Maybe it will be so new as to be exciting and interesting. I hope so.

A. Eh??

The orchestral brass is tuning to an oboe B flat. I have heard wind bands doing that but never an orchestra! What is the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra up to? The oboe sustains the note and the strings start to tune, and it is now an A, the traditional note. But the note has not shifted an iota of a Hertz – only my perception has shifted. Remarkable.

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