Daily Archives: June 1, 2015

From France 24 :


Paris bids ‘adieu’ to love locks on the Pont des Arts

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http://f24.my/1AJ5Fjl

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Music for the soul: J. S. Bach: Cantata Nº 208, ‘Sheep May Safely Graze’, BWV 208


J. S. Bach: Cantata Nº 208, ‘Sheep May Safely Graze’, BWV 208

make music part of your life: Aram Khachaturian – Lezginka from Gayane


Aram Khachaturian – Lezginka from Gayane

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Khachaturian in 1971

signature written in ink in a flowing script

Aram Il’yich Khachaturian (/ˈærəm ˌkɑːəˈtʊəriən/;[1] Russian: Арам Ильич Хачатурян; Armenian: Արամ Խաչատրյան, Aram Xačatryan;[A] Armenian pronunciation: [ɑˈɾɑm χɑt͡ʃʰɑt(ə)ɾˈjɑn]; 6 June 1903 – 1 May 1978) was a Soviet Armenian composer and conductor. He is considered one of the leading Soviet composers.[2][3]

Born and raised in Tbilisi, the multicultural capital of Georgia, Khachaturian moved to Moscow in 1921 following the Sovietization of the Caucasus. Without prior music training, he enrolled in the Gnessin Musical Institute, subsequently studying at the Moscow Conservatory in the class of Nikolai Myaskovsky, among others. His first major work, the Piano Concerto (1936), popularized his name within and outside the Soviet Union. It was followed by the Violin Concerto (1940) and the Cello Concerto (1946). His other significant compositions include the Masquerade Suite (1941), the Anthem of the Armenian SSR (1944), three symphonies (1935, 1943, 1947), and around 25 film scores. Khachaturian is best known for his ballet music—Gayane (1942) and Spartacus (1954). His most popular piece, the “Sabre Dance” from Gayane, has been used extensively in popular culture and has been covered by a number of musicians worldwide.[4] His style is “characterized by colorful harmonies, captivating rhythms, virtuosity, improvisations, and sensuous melodies.”[5]

During most of his career, Khachaturian was approved by the Soviet government and held several high posts in the Union of Soviet Composers from the late 1930s, although he joined the Communist Party only in 1943. Along with Sergei Prokofiev and Dmitri Shostakovich, he was officially denounced as a “formalist” and his music dubbed “anti-people” in 1948, but was restored later that year. After 1950 he taught at the Gnessin Institute and the Moscow Conservatory, and turned to conducting. He traveled to Europe, Latin America and the United States with concerts of his own works. In 1957 Khachaturian became the Secretary of Union of Soviet Composers, a position he held until his death.

Khachaturian was the most renowned Armenian composer of the 20th century[6] and the author of the first Armenian ballet music, symphony, concerto, and film score.[B] While following the established musical traditions of Russia, he broadly used Armenian and to lesser extent, Caucasian, Eastern & Central European, and Middle Eastern peoples’ folk music in his works. He is highly regarded in Armenia, where he is considered a “national treasure”.[7]

Denunciation and restoration (1948)

 
Khachaturian in 1964

In mid-December 1947, the Department for Agitation and Propaganda (better known as Agitprop) submitted to Andrei Zhdanov, the secretary of the Communist Party’s Central Committee, a document on the “shortcomings” in the development of Soviet music. On 10–13 January 1948, a conference was held at the Kremlin in the presence of seventy musicians, composers, conductors and others who were confronted by Zhdanov:[35]

We will consider that if these comrades [Shostakovich, Prokofiev, Myaskovsky, Khachaturian, Kabalevsky and Shebalin] namely who are the principal and leading figures of the formalist direction in music. And that direction is fundamentally incorrect.

Thus, Khachaturian and other leading composers were denounced by the Communist Party as followers of the alleged formalism[10] (i.e. “[a type of] music that was considered too advanced or difficult for the masses to enjoy”)[3] and their music was dubbed “anti-people”.[36] It was the Symphonic Poem (1947), later titled the Third Symphony, that officially earned Khachaturian the wrath of the Party.[35][37] Ironically, he wrote the work as a tribute to the 30th anniversary of the October Revolution.[38] He stated: “I wanted to write the kind of composition in which the public would feel my unwritten program without an announcement. I wanted this work to express the Soviet people’s joy and pride in their great and mighty country.”[39]

Musicologist Blair Johnston believes that his “music contained few, if any, of the objectionable traits found in the music of some of his more adventuresome colleagues. In retrospect, it was most likely Khachaturian’s administrative role in the Union [of Soviet Composers], perceived by the government as a bastion of politically incorrect music, and not his music as such, which earned him a place on the black list of 1948.”[40] In March 1948,[20] Khachaturian “made a very full and humble apology for his artistic “errors” following the Zhdanov decree; his musical style, however, underwent no changes.”[40] He was sent to Armenia as a “punishment”,[10] and continued to be censured.[20] By December 1948,[20] he was “restored to favor later that year when he was praised for his film biography of Lenin”—Vladimir Ilyich Lenin (ru).[16]

Pope: God’s love for his people is manifest in Jesus’ death on the Cross


English Español Français Italiano Português Google Facebook Twitter Youtube RSS Flickr Instagram Fides News Agency L’Osservatore Romano Press Office VIS Vatican Radio CTV From the Pope Pope: God’s love for his people is manifest in Jesus’ death on the Cross

Pope: God’s love for his people is manifest in Jesus’ death on the Cross (click to access story)

via  http://www.news.va/en/news/pope-gods-love-for-his-people-is-manifest-in-jesus

historic musical bits: Schumann : Piano Quintet in E flat major, Op. 44 , Rudolf Serkin / Bush String Quartet (Rec. 1942)


Schumann : Piano Quintet in E flat major, Op. 44

great compositions/performances: Antonín Dvořák – Humoresque No. 7, Op. 101


Antonín DvořákHumoresque No. 7, Op. 101

Saint of the Day for Monday, June 1st, 2015: St. Justin Martyr


today’s holiday/celebration: Gawai Dayak


Gawai Dayak

Gawai Dayak is a rice harvest festival of the Dayak people of Sarawak, Malaysia, on the northern coast of Borneo. Some aspects of the celebrations have remained essentially the same for centuries. At midnight on the eve of Gawai Dayak, a house elder conducts the chief ritual: while sacrificing a white cock, he recites a poem to ask for guidance, blessings, and a long life. Other events include the selection of the most beautiful man and woman to be king and queen of the harvest, dancing, a feast of rice, eggs, and vegetables, and the serving of traditional tuak, rice wine. More… Discuss

quotation: I believe there’s no proverb but what is true; Miguel de Cervantes


I believe there’s no proverb but what is true; they are all so many sentences and maxims drawn from experience, the universal mother of sciences.

Miguel de Cervantes (1547-1616) Discuss

Today’s Birthday: Marilyn Monroe (1926)


CAM01700

 

Marilyn Monroe (1926)

Monroe was an American actress, world-famous sex symbol, and cultural icon. The onetime model made her screen debut in 1948 and was at first patronized by critics, but she studied acting and eventually won more challenging roles. Her private life, including her marriages to baseball star Joe DiMaggio and playwright Arthur Miller, has been subject to intense scrutiny, and her death from a barbiturate overdose at age 36 only increased her mystique. Why was her childhood particularly tumultuous? More… Discuss

Tanglewood


Tanglewood

Tanglewood is an estate and music venue in Lenox and Stockbridge, Massachusetts, and is the home of the annual summer Tanglewood Music Festival and the Tanglewood Jazz Festival. It has been the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s summer home since 1937. Its summer school is one of the world’s preeminent training grounds for composers, conductors, instrumentalists, and vocalists. The name “Tanglewood” pays homage to what American author who spent time in the region? More… Discuss

this day in the yesteryear: Mary Dyer, Boston Martyr, Hanged for Being a Quaker (1660)


Mary Dyer, Boston Martyr, Hanged for Being a Quaker (1660)

Dyer was an English Quaker who was hanged in Boston after repeatedly defying a law banning Quakers from the colony. Her death and those of the three other “Boston Martyrs” led to the easing of anti-Quaker laws in Massachusetts. Years earlier, in 1637, after Dyer had given birth to a stillborn fetus and buried it privately, the governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony had the “monstrous birth” publicly exhumed to serve as evidence of the heresies of what religious doctrine? More… Discuss

word: escalate


escalate

Definition: (verb) To increase, enlarge, or intensify.
Synonyms: intensify, step up
Usage: Tensions escalated as the politicians refused to compromise. Discuss.

From BBC : Letting the cyber-thieves get away


Letting the cyber-thieves get away

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-32496382