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Thread: Centennial Of Mily Balakire've Death

  1. #1
    Seaman, Mezzoforte
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    Centennial Of Mily Balakire've Death

    Russian composer Mily Balakirev was born in 1837 and died 100 years ago.
    He was a very important and influential figure in 19th century Russian music, but unfortunately,his music is very rarely performed live,although there have been a fair number of recordings of it.
    His best-known work is probably the fiendishly difficult piano piece Islamey,which is inspired by the music of the Caucasus,and which has been orchestrated by Sergei Liapunov and Alfredo Casella.
    But his two symphonies and several other orchestral works,such as the symphonic poem Tamara,and two piano concertos are very seldom heard in concert halls,which is a pity.
    Any one who enjoys the music of Mussorgsky,Rimsky-Korsakov and Borodin should find Balakirev's music highly appealing.
    The symphony no 1 in C major is a marvelous work which would make a refreshing change at concerts from the same old Tchaikovsky symphonies, wonerful as those are. It is chock full of memorable themes and colorfully orchestrated, and has a decidedly oriental and Asian flavor.
    I'm sure audiences would love it if they got a chance to hear it live.
    It has been recorded Sir Thomas Beecham and other notable conductors such as Neeme Jarvi and Yevgeny Svetlanov. If you love Russian music and are unfamiliar with it, you owe it to youself to hear it.

  2. #2
    Captain of Water Music Montefalco's Avatar
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    I agree that Balakirev is very underrated. I heard Islamey performed live a year or two ago, and went and bought a recording straight away. It has a very 19th century romantic feel about it, while incorporating very Russian themes and harmonies.

  3. #3
    Admiral Honkenwheezenpooferspieler Corno Dolce's Avatar
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    Hi superhorn,

    Ahhh, you are familiar with Balakirev...His *Islamey* knotted my fingers while learning it but its a piece that gives and gives and gives and.............Thanx for sharing about the centennial of his *falling asleep*.

    Cheers,

    CD
    *If a man wants God to hear his prayer quickly, then before he prays for anything else, even his own soul, when he stands and stretches out his hands towards God, he must pray with all his heart for his enemies. Through this action God will hear everything that he asks* -Abba Zeno-

    *Protagoras: "Truth is subjective. What is true for you, and what is true for me, is true for me. Your opinion is true by virtue of its being your opinion."

    *Socrates: "My opinion is: Truth is absolute, not opinion, and that you are in absolute error. Since this is my opinion, then according to your philosophy you must grant that it is true."

    "Improvisational Art": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSxVO3EoCRM

  4. #4
    Recruit, Pianissimo
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    Ahhh Balakirev... one of the quintessential Russian composers. Of course his Islamey is very famous, but I would like to draw attention to his first symphony, which is one of my personal favorites. What a great artist!

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