For a very long time I’ve needed to share my love of classical music with college students. That’s why I’m creating a brand new on-line class referred to as “The Story of Nice Music” to do exactly that. It’s an introduction to the best composers and greatest music ever written. However I’m approaching it in a reasonably distinctive method (extra on that under).
My hope is that, by way of this class, you and your children will uncover great new companions for yourselves for the remainder of your lives.
A Moderately Lengthy Relationship
I used to be first launched to classical music in highschool. On the time, I knew completely nothing about music. I had performed soccer as an alternative of studying an instrument; I by no means sang within the choir; and I had no concept what the little dots and features meant on a web page of music. I used to be the definition of non-musical.
After I reached my junior 12 months, nonetheless, I needed to take a music appreciation course from the band trainer. The band trainer, though a pleasant man, was not terribly thrilling; however he did know rather a lot about music. Extra importantly, he cherished classical music.
I nonetheless keep in mind him placing on a recording of one among Mozart’s symphonies. I used to be mesmerized. I had by no means heard music like that earlier than. This was the late 1980’s, so I had grown up listening to rock and roll on the radio or on cassette tapes. Not like children rising up within the 1950’s or 60’s, classical music wasn’t part of our residence.
Over the course of that 12 months, I used to be launched to all the nice composers: Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann, Brahms, and lots of extra. I met individuals and music I didn’t even know existed. It was revelatory.
Cassettes, CDs, and LPs
I subsequent keep in mind going out and shopping for a cassette tape of Mozart’s fortieth and forty first symphonies. It was carried out by Rafael Kubelik and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. On the time, I had no concept who these individuals have been. However the music was heavenly. I listened to it repeatedly.
That was the beginning of a gorgeous relationship. Throughout school, I graduated to a Compact Disc participant and acquired a whole lot of CDs. It was then that I started to comprehend completely different conductors carried out the identical piece of music other ways. This meant I would want a number of recordings of the identical piece of music.
My library exploded. Finally it was house that made me cease at 1000+ CDs. At this level, I used to be now residing alone and so may attend symphony live shows each within the US and abroad (I spent various years residing in Europe).
By the early 2000’s, nonetheless, digital music arrived on the scene. I now may personal hundreds of albums that took up no house in any respect. My digital acquisitions continued by way of the early 2010’s and reached into the hundreds of albums.
But I stored on the lookout for a greater listening expertise. A buddy satisfied me I used to be lacking out not listening to classical music on vinyl information, so I purchased a classic turntable and stereo setup.
I used to be amazed at what I had been lacking. After all, now that my CDs and digital albums have been ineffective, I began the glad climb up the hill of classical LP’s (Lengthy Enjoying file). I’m barely ashamed to say that my assortment has already damaged 1000… however solely barely.
A New Sort of Music Class
I noticed early on that I needed to create a brand new type of music class. In the end, I needed to present individuals the identical love of classical music that I’ve. However how did I study classical music? By studying, listening, and watching.
One of many challenges of studying books about music is which you could’t really hear the music being mentioned. However, should you’re simply listening to music (say on earbuds or audio system), you may’t see the musicians play it or perceive something about it. The problem of classical music is that it requires numerous completely different features to understand what it truly is.
I hope to treatment that with this class. There is a gigantic quantity of excellent public area materials already written about classical music. I’ve taken various books and edited them collectively to create a single story. We are going to discover the lives of the composers, main developments in music, and the perfect works ever written.
Alongside that, there are lots of glorious reside performances obtainable on-line. I’ve positioned the perfect obtainable recordings of well-known music carried out by unimaginable musicians, then woven them into the story.
Because of this as you examine Mozart’s piano concertos, you may really see and listen to one carried out. While you learn in regards to the string quartet, it is possible for you to to look at a efficiency the place two violins, a viola, and a cello play collectively. And after we speak in regards to the Italian Baroque composer Antonio Vivaldi writing a collection of works referred to as L’Estro armonico (Harmonic Inspiration), you may hear precisely what one appears like:
Hearken to Vivaldi’s Op. 3, No. 11 from L’Estro armonico
This options three extremely gifted younger soloists performing with Sinfonietta Riga, a Latvian Orchestra. You’ll be able to hear till 0:45 and listen to the introduction – or take a number of extra minutes to hearken to all of it .
Watching a live performance is, in spite of everything, how audiences historically skilled music. Personally, I’ve been in a position to attend dozens of classical live shows in Europe and the US. I’ve seen some superb performances.
However that’s now troublesome for most individuals to do. By selecting explicit performances from the web, I wish to give college students the expertise of seeing in addition to listening to classical music.
Following the Story
We are going to observe the story of music beginning within the center ages and persevering with as much as the early twentieth century. That’s over 500 years of music—which implies there are tons of great works to listen to.
We are going to start with the Renaissance, then have a look at the Baroque interval together with Handel and Bach. From there, we’ll discover the Classical period with Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven. As soon as we attain the nineteenth century, the story spreads into the Romantic period with Schubert, Schumann, Chopin, Wagner, Brahms, and extra. Lastly, we’ll enter the twentieth century with Mahler, Sibelius, Prokofiev, and Gershwin (plus a number of others – there are simply so many).
These names could not imply a lot to you now. My hope is that by the point you might be completed, you’ll think about them new pals.
Lastly, this class can even present you methods of listening to music by way of curated listening playlists on varied subscription channels. We are going to give suggestions for the perfect performances to buy with a purpose to construct a listening library. And we’ll give recommendation on selecting tools for varied setups, whether or not you wish to hear on headphones or construct a stereo system.
Beginning the Class
This can be a utterly new type of class for us. For these of you who’re conversant in our prior curriculum, we usually construct our lessons round a trainer on a video. This time, the trainer is the textual content and the movies are the fabric.
It has taken us longer to determine this out than we had anticipated. Our hope was to have the category completed by the top of 2021. As an alternative, we’re a few third of the way in which by way of and notice it is going to be a number of extra months till we’re completed.
That doesn’t imply you should wait, nonetheless. We’ve got launched every part at the moment prepared so individuals can begin making an attempt out the category and giving us suggestions. Are the teachings the fitting size? Would you like quizzes at each step, or a check on the finish? What do you consider the playlists? We’ve got obtained sufficient constructive suggestions from those that have seen the category that we consider we’re headed in the fitting course, however it’s simply not a quick course of to create the steps.
That mentioned, you might be welcome to start out the category as we speak. The primary classes are free for everybody to check out. If you have already got our Premium Membership, you will get to all the teachings that at the moment are launched (and can be launched within the upcoming weeks). If you’d like your children to be taught to like classical music, we expect this can be a nice method to do it.
A Glimpse of Pure Magnificence
However I can’t go away you with out yet another piece of music.
Within the strategy of on the lookout for explicit recordings, I got here throughout numerous performances I had by no means seen earlier than. The efficiency under is my favourite. Not solely is the work extremely well-known, however it’s carried out right here by a younger husband and spouse duo whose interplay with one another makes it extraordinary. (One in all them additionally occurs to be some of the well-known pianists on this planet.)
Is is the proper image of the great thing about marriage, and it hints at why God made marriage the image of His relationship to the church. It’s not stunning that this music is usually performed at weddings: it’s of beautiful pastoral magnificence, suggesting shepherds, peace, and safety. After all, additionally it is the music of Johann Sebastian Bach, the composer who deeply cherished the Lord. He was identified for signing his works with the initials S.D.G. which stood for Soli Del Gloria: ‘to God alone be the Glory.’
Hearken to Bach’s “Sheep Might Safely Graze” from his Searching Cantata, BWV 209 (transcribed for Piano)
This efficiency options the extraordinary Chinese language pianist Lang Lang enjoying alongside his spouse, the swish German-Korean pianist Gina Alice.