Perspective | A beginner’s guide to enjoying classical music. No snobs allowed. - Deepstash

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Perspective | A beginner’s guide to enjoying classical music. No snobs allowed.

washingtonpost.com

Classical music offers something on a large scale

Very few art forms offer something as big as an orchestra—one hundred people playing music that can last over half an hour.

To start with, try to identify some of the different things you hear.

  • Pick one of the nine Beethoven symphonies, then add to the Western...

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The term "classical music" is a catchall for everything from solo piano works to Gregorian chant to contemporary instrumental sextets.

To help orientate yourself, start with some of the traditional smaller ensembles where three or four musicians play toget...

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  • For conventional music, listen to the piano works of Cecile Chaminade or Lili Boulanger's Nocturne for Violin and Piano.
  • You can find different musical timbres and textures in Lou Harrison's Suite for Violin and American Gamelan.
  • Bach's un...

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Classical vocal music is either loved or really hated.

  • If you've heard Beethoven's Ninth or Orff's "Carmina Burana" and liked them, look at Mahler's "Das Lied von der Erde", which is a symphony of six songs based on Chinese poetry.
  • Two gems are Richard Strauss's "Four Last ...

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The piano is a classical instrument, and the keyboard will give you a variety from all over the world, from Bach's Goldberg Variations to Beethoven's 32 sonatas to Frederic Rzewski's contemporary variations on "The People United Will Never be Defeated." Listen to Chopin's piano w...

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Following a gifted artist might be a better way to get into the field than singling out performances of masterpieces.

Particular artists whose concerts are almost always memorable are pianists Daniil Trifonov and Yuja Wang, violinists Hila...

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Classical music makes a particular kind of musical statement longer than other forms and in a complex manner. It cannot be understood quickly or conveyed in any other form.

You have to think about what it is or isn't, listen to the distinct sounds it offers, recognize ear...

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