Friday, April 17, 2009

Much of YouTube Symphony concert is viewable online; winners' clips are available

YouTube has a one hour video of the “YouTube” symphony orchestra, starting with a presentation by Michael Tilson Thomas, link here. Tilson has to start by explaining what classical music is, in general terms, over the past 1200 years, saying “who we have been”. It calls itself “the world’s first collaborative online orchestra.” The speech is followed by many self-introductions.

The first work on the video is the scherzo from Brahms Third Symphony.

Thomas then went over the percussion section and played a work by Lou Harrison.

Then a cellist explained how music gave him a solitary lifestyle, and he compared it to poker.

Next the finale from the Dvorak Serenade #2 was performed.

Next followed some brass music (Gabrielli, I think).

Then the cellist Joshua Roman (introduced by YoYo Ma) played a Sarabande from a Bach unaccompanied cello suite. He discussed the idea that music bridges nationalities (he mentioned Romania and China).

Then the orchestra played a Villa-Lobos Bachianas Brasileiras.

The last piece was the “Ride of the Valkyries” from Richard Wagner’s Die Walkure.

The concert was held at Carnegie Hall Wednesday April 15. The YouTube file appears to be the first half of the concert before the intermission.

The Youtube link presents an orchestra seating chart with the winners, with links to their submissions. The piano submission was the first movement of the Beethoven Waldstein Sonata, on an open upright piano.

I heard Tilson Thomas perform at a "Young People's Concert" in New York City in 1973.

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