Music 270 PERSONAL ESSAY #1 Most Memorable Musical Experience

Essay/Term paper: Concert paper 3 Essay, term paper, research paper: Music

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Above all else, though, Gershwin revived a lost classical paradigm: the performingcomposer. Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, Liszt – all the classical superstars of thepast had gained fame by playing their own works to awe-struck audiences. Only toward theend of the century did Brahms, Wagner and others break the mold by creating the mystiqueof the aloof composer so occupied with rarefied thoughts that presentation had to be leftto others. First Gershwin, and then Bernstein, would briefly revive the tradition of theall-around musician whose talent could not be confined to a single field of artisticendeavor.

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• Haydn: (1962-1968) (on SonySM2K 47550). Bernstein had easily won over young concertgoers (and infatuated many olderones as well) with his youth, energy, charm and great looks. The orchestra was happy aswell: the huge popularity of Bernstein's concerts increased the players' paid season from34 weeks to full-time employment, and burgeoning record and TV royalties augmentedrevenues yet further. But critics were less impressed. The London snipedthat Bernstein seemed "utterly at the mercy of adolescent emotional rages" and"always appeared to be succumbing to his first excited reactions to the music, neverto be thinking beyond them." His worst enemy, though, was far closer to home. HaroldSchonberg, senior music critic of the , was a constant thorn inBernstein's side, bitterly complaining after the first season: "At all times the auraof show business rather than music-making is present. Thoughtful people are beginning tocomplain more and more of Bernstein's antics on the podium ... and asking if Lenny is evergoing to grow up."

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Write an essay exploring your most memorable musical experience. Choose one experience in which music is the central focus as your subject to discuss, not a type of musical experience, as the basis for your essay. .

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And so it was that the musical world was surprised to learn at a press conference onNovember 20, 1957 that Leonard Bernstein had been named music director of the New YorkPhilharmonic. Perhaps the most convincing explanation is offered by Meryle Secrest, whocontends that Arthur Judson, impresario and manager of the Philharmonic since 1922, hadall but ruined the orchestra by hiring only personnel, soloists and conductors whom herepresented, a classic conflict of interest that had deprived the orchestra of theexcellence and variety it required for genuine stature. When Judson was finally ousted inSeptember 1956, the board knew that a clear break with past practice was needed to restorepublic confidence. Bernstein's youth, modern repertoire, charisma and audience appeal madehim a logical choice and he was selected over Guido Cantelli, a protege of Toscanini whoboasted all the traditional European virtues.

Music Concert Review Essays 1 - 30 Anti Essays

Stravinsky's score is an absolutely brilliant component of the ballet, which opens in awondrous evocation of the first promise of spring and concludes in vicious humansacrifice. The music ranges from plaintive folk music to huge, pounding rhythm, fromplacid reverie to grating dissonance, and from leaping metric grace to irregularfragmentation. Perhaps above all else, it is a score that proves the point that languagecannot possibly suffice to even begin to describe great music.

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In the public mind, it is the conductor who personifies the power of classical music,holding a hundred musicians under perfect control and unleashing the force of the fullorchestra with a mere gesture. Despite his spectacular success as a soloist, teacher andcomposer, it is as a conductor that Bernstein will be best remembered.

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Having associated with contemporary composers and having written much modern musichimself, Bernstein was well aware that the pivotal significance of transcended mere popularity. Indeed, so much of what we now accept as "modernmusic" derives from . Carl Van Vechten (who got beat up in the openingnight melee) recalled that the audience had reacted so violently because they found thewhole thing "a blasphemous attempt to destroy music as an art." With the benefitof perspective, Edwin Evans more aptly described the score as "a conflict which isforever rending and tearing, not in order to destroy, but in order to emerge."Stravinsky recognized that traditional classical music had become stagnant and had toevolve quickly. He did not set out to destroy the old music, but his jagged rhythms, wildharmonies and violent dynamics gave birth to so much of the music of our time. Thus theproblem Bernstein faced was to present the score with startling freshness to an audiencethat was apt to take its innovations for granted. After all, in the 45 years since thepremiere of modern notions of rhythm had grown sophisticated through jazz,traditional musical form had become superseded by chance music, the outer bounds oftonality and dissonance had been supplanted by serial music, and crashing chords seemeddownright placid compared to high-decibel rockers and computer-generated .