Tag Archives: Grief Loss and Bereavement

Valentina Lisitsa: Chopin Nocturne Op 48 No.1 C minor (What a precious musical interpretation!)

One of Chopin’s most priceless performance remarks is at the beginning of this Nocturne — “sotto voce“. Just like that : not a girlish “piano” , not an ambivalent “mezzo forte” , not even meaty forte ( the last thing you want here is an “opera” voice for this melody ).It effectively bars all over-the-top cheap and showy “expressive emotions” — no eye rolling allowed , no hair flailing, no hands flying , no sobs , no visible tears…. A musical equivalent of the famed British ” keeping a stiff upper lip “- this “sotto voce” gives us the right sense of what this piece is about .Just as Chopin’s 2nd sonata this nocturne deals directly and openly with such tragic subjects as death, loss and grief … except , here you are allowed to leave personal comments. 2nd sonata is a depiction of all those things , this Nocturne is a commentary- or an epitaph…..the fifth movement that would come after the Finale …If you ever visit La Madeleine in Paris ( Chopin’s parish church where his funeral was held on October 30th ) think about this Nocturne , OK?

PS. Talking about parallels between Rachmaninoff and Chopin works , don’t you think that “doppio movimento” part ( last pages ) sounds ominously like Rachmaninoff Etude-Tableau E flat Minor Op39?

This Day in the Yesteryear: SHAKA ZULU IS ASSASSINATED (1828)

Shaka Zulu Is Assassinated (1828)

A skilled warrior, Shaka established himself as head of the Zulu circa 1816 and soon made them the dominant power in southeastern Africa. He was ruthless before his mother’s death in 1827, but after, he became positively savage. He had at least 7,000 people executed for being insufficiently grief-stricken, put to death any couple found to have conceived during the mourning period, and even slaughtered cows so that their calves would know the loss of a mother. Who ultimately assassinated Shaka? More… Discuss


All That Jazz, 1979: There Will Be Some Changes Made

To learn more about the film, please access the following link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/All_That_Jazz,

And to learn more about the five stages of grieving please access

Elisabeth Kübler-Ross‘ book “on Death and Dying” 1969, and follow her remarkable career, until her death in 2004