Among Schubert’s compositions is one called “Arpeggione Sonata.” Nowadays, musicians play this piece on a cello; however, when the music was originally composed, it was played on the arpeggione, which looks like a cello with six strings. Can you think of any instrument that has six strings? Right, the guitar. Playing the arpeggione is like […]
Francis Poulenc belonged to Les Six who composed music in the avant-garde and surrealistic style, yet his music is not mysterious or difficult to understand. His melodies are fine and beautiful, light and free. They are attractive because they evoke a few tears. Even though “Nocturne” was inspired by night, I usually listen to this […]
“When you see a gentleman dressed up in a suit, don’t you think he’s cool? When you see a lady who is dressed in a suit, in a simple way without too many accessories, don’t you think she’s cool? They seem restrained, but they certainly look tidy and professional. This grace and style we refer […]
In classic fairy tales, we are all handsome princes and beautiful princesses. We fall in love and go on adventures just as the stars in movies do. However, we are tricked by magic and forget our noble position. After many years, we follow the sound of music playing and are set free: we once again […]
Softly but clearly…sadly but not enough to bring tears…emotionally yet detachedly…impulsively but not recklessly…inspiring movement but in a subdued way…deeply but not inaccessibly…intensely but calmly like an opera…naïvely but sometimes with the wisdom of an old man…That’s how Mozart’s music should be played.
Once when I was a child, I filled up my mouth with candy and was so happy enjoying the sweetness. Did you ever have this experience when you were young? The music of French composer Saint-Saëns evokes this feeling. His music is not too heavy or overwhelming. Rather, it is light and makes us happy. […]
Concerto grosso is a term for a concerto of the Baroque period. This piece contains three soloists: two recorder players and one violinist. You might recognize this music when you listen to it. The recorders sound like angels chattering while the violin plays continuously; these two instruments together make one beautiful melody.
Baroque is a style of Western European music composed from approximately 1600 to 1750. The word “baroque” originates from the Portuguese barroco which means ‘”imperfect pearl.” We can understand why it’s called a pearl because it is beautiful. Then why is it called ‘imperfect’? Well, this is my thought: Baroque music obviously sounds beautiful, but […]
Once there was a man who asked a composer to compose his music. The man wanted it to be shorter than contemporary music and to sound like baroque music. Although this is a contemporary piece, its length, lightness, and beauty are baroque.
There’s a piece called ‘Pifa’ in the middle of Handel’s ‘Messiah’, which is played only by the orchestra. The ‘Pifa’, which takes its name from the shepherd-bagpipers, was used as a music title not only by Handel but also by other contemporary composers. It was a kind of convention. Corelli, a composer of the Baroque […]