A moment of calm

I had a bit of a dilemma today. I’ve not listened to much music recently, and I was looking forward to a full day of the radio. It didn’t quite work out that why – when does it ever – and next week I hope to share a piece with you that explains why. But this afternoon I heard two wonderful pieces played, both a similar length but very different in tone. It’s the first time I’ve heard the final movement of Sibelius’ 5th Symphony on the radio since I decided to write this blog, and I always knew that the first time I would definitely write about it.

But I’m not, today! And please be rest assured that’s not because I didn’t enjoy it, today or any day, and I am still very much in love with it, enough to not ever regret choosing it for the Classic FM Hall of Fame 2020. But today I chose a different piece, for two reasons.

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And you smiled at eye level

Friday is done, the week is done, a rather chaotic week in many ways so I’m glad to be officially chilling out with a local ale and looking forward to a calm weekend. I like calm weekends, but I’m not such a fan of calm music – isn’t that odd?

Anyway, today’s “yay” (not so much a “yay” actually but a knowing nod, and a jazzy bop) is a platinum selling single!

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A waily waltz today

I didn’t know what I was going to talk about today – there were so many good things to choose from! In the end it was a toss up between something I’ve loved for a very long time, and something I’ve only just come to love. In homage to one of my favourite composers, Aram Khachaturian, I’ve decided to talk about a piece I haven’t heard for far too long, rather than one I’ve been listening to rather a lot in my own time: the waltz from Khachaturian’s “Masquerade” Suite.

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Never follow your own advice

The other day, I was talking to my friend about music, over text. I wanted him to listen out for something I knew was coming up on the radio, which I’d heard a few times recently and begun to really enjoy. I knew that he would reach that point too, but was also aware that in my experience anyway, it is difficult with classical or film music to become particularly attached to something the first time you hear it, because part of the attachment is the familiarity around it. So I wanted him to listen out for it and begin his journey to loving it, even if it didn’t completely attract him first time. He agreed with my suggestion that you have to listen to something multiple times to really fall in love with it. And I do still believe that – but I found an exception today.

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The most powerful ballet finale (in my opinion)

Today, one of my top 3 pieces as voted for in the Classic FM Hall of Fame was played on the radio by John Suchet, and I jumped at the chance to be able to discuss it. The piece? The finale of “Swan Lake” by Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.

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My first yay!

Today was the first day I wasn’t just texting my colleague when something came on that I liked. (Actually, if we want to be pedantic, I wasn’t even doing that, because he was at work without the radio.)

It felt quite exciting thinking about what I was going to talk about today. Two pieces came on quite early in the day which made me particularly happy, but then in the early afternoon one of my “trump” pieces came on and I knew then that nothing should beat it! Luckily, nothing did, and so today I will be talking about the beautiful “Adiemus” by one of my top composers, Karl Jenkins.

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