Daily Archives: June 17, 2011

Edita Gruberova. O légère hirondelle. Mirelle. Gounod.

Edita Gruberova, soprano.
The Tokio Philharmonic Orchestra.
Friedrich Haider.

Edita Gruberová (born December 23, 1946, Bratislava) is a Slovak soprano who is one of the most acclaimed coloraturas of recent decades. She is noted for her great tonal clarity, agility, dramatic interpretation, and ability to sing high notes with great power, which made her an ideal Queen of the Night in her early years. In recent years, she has enjoyed great success with a number of the most important bel canto roles.

Gruberová was born in Bratislava in Slovakia, the daughter of a Hungarian mother and a father with German ancestors. Her native language is Slovak. She began her musical studies at Bratislava Conservatory where she was a student of Mária Medvecká. She then continued at Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava (VŠMU). While studying, she was a singer of the famous Lúčnica folk ensemble and also appeared several times in the Slovak National Theatre. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edita_Gruberova)

Franz Schubert: Symphony in B minor ‘Unfinished’ conducted by Bruno Walter.

1. Allegro moderato

York Philharmonic Orchestra, playing the ‘Unfinished Symphony‘ (Unvollendete Sinfonie) of Schubert in B minor.

2. Andante con moto


Recorded March 3rd 1958.

Franz Schubert‘s Symphony No. 8 in B minor (sometimes renumbered as Symphony No. 7[1]), commonly known as the “Unfinished Symphony” (German: Unvollendete), D.759, was started in 1822 but left with only two movements known to be complete, even though Schubert would live for another six years. A scherzo, nearly completed in piano score but with only two pages orchestrated, also survives. It has long been theorized that Schubert may have sketched a finale which instead became the big B minor entr’acte from his incidental music to Rosamunde, but all the evidence for this is circumstantial.[1] One possible reason for Schubert’s leaving the symphony incomplete is the predominance of the same meter (three-in-a-bar). The first movement is in 3/4, the second in 3/8 and the third (an incomplete scherzo) also in 3/4. Three consecutive movements in exactly the same meter rarely occur in the symphonies, sonatas or chamber works of the great Viennese composers (one notable exception being Haydn’s Farewell Symphony).
(Sourse: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphony_No._8_(Schubert)
One of the most longing themes of musical delight, with the recurrence of the motif, giving the sense of return to an unfinished thought or day in the life of the composer. A search for true memory of the details in the scene long time passed. With each repetition, another detail comes to light, and makes the memory more colorful, while…still a memory… an unforgettable day-dream, filled with both the joy of the reenactment and nostalgia coming with the realization of the impossibility of reenacting the past, but in a memory.

The coda, again circular, gives the feeling that this episode, this moment from the past will always be revisited, from time to time, just in the way one revisits his life memories.


Today’s Birthday: John Hersey (1914)

John Hersey (1914)

Born in China to missionary parents, Hersey worked as a journalist in East Asia, Italy, and the Soviet Union from 1937 to 1946, including as a war correspondent during WWII. In 1944, he won the Pulitzer Prize for his novel A Bell for Adano, which depicts the Allied occupation of a Sicilian town. He later combined fact and fiction in his most famous work, Hiroshima, about the experiences of atomic-blast survivors. How did Hersey inspire Dr. Seuss to write The Cat in the Hat? More… Discuss

This day in History: The Night Attack (1462)

AtaculdeNoapte_ The Night Attack_Teodor Aman

AtaculdeNoapte_ The Night Attack_Teodor Aman

The Night Attack (1462)

The Night Attack was a battle fought between the forces of Wallachian Prince Vlad III, known as Vlad the Impaler, and the forces of Mehmed II, sultan of the Ottoman Empire. After Vlad raided Bulgaria and killed more than 20,000 Turks and Bulgarians, Mehmed marched on Wallachia, and the two powers fought a series of skirmishes. In the Night Attack, Vlad attacked the Turkish camp in an attempt to assassinate Mehmed. The attempt failed, but Mehmed retreated anyway. Why? More… Discuss