By Richard Keelingmusickna. Thursday, October 12, 2006 12:07:42 AM
Undoubtedly, Symphony No. 3 A Pastoral Symphony by Ralph Vaughan Williams. Again, we have Beethoven to thank for expressly Romantic concept of a pastoral symphony, with, ironically, Vaughan Williams' symphony representing a post-WWI swan song of the form.
Even Williams' later work in a similarly melodic and reflective manner (e.g. Symphony No. 5), shows a striking difference. The social dissonance of the post war period becomes fully incorporated into a style that reflects some of the many cross-currents of musical thought that came into fruition at that time.
But Symphony No. 3 is not there yet - rather it is a first attempt to reconcile the Romantic tradition with the modern phenomenom of mass slaughter through the medium of a modal, folk-tune influenced, elegy. As such, it still conveys a sense of wide-eyed innocence come face-to-face with horror, and a recoiling into older and calmer thoughts in an attempt to assimilate these unwelcome events.
By Richard Keelingmusickna. Thursday, October 5, 2006 2:45:13 AM
For some reason, this thought overwhelmed me, and, rather than put it on my own blog, I decided to put it here and give this near moribund forum a little kick.
The thought - nothing to do with Beethoven except as a consequence of his universal influence on classical music - was that the opening movement of Jan Sibelius' 6th Symphony is the single most gorgeous opening in the whole of classical music.
That's all for now!