Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Concert at the University of Mary Washington

Last weekend, I went down to Fredericksburg, VA to visit a friend. While I was there, we went to a classical music concert at the University of Mary Washington. Here are the pieces we heard:

1. Jean Sibelius' Finlandia
This is a patriotic piece which was written during a time when Russia had complete control over Finland.

2. Bedřich Smetana's Moldau
Smetana (pronounced SME-tana, not smet-A-na, which is how a student at the university said it), was a Czech composer, and he wrote this piece describing the Moldau river (also known as the Vtlana in Czech; Moldau is the German name). The music tells the story of two springs which meet to become a river which wanders through multiple landscapes, like forests and fields, and even passes a wedding and a group of nymphs dancing. The university included a slideshow of photographs to align with the music; while a video rather than a slideshow may have been more effective, I still appreciated the mix of artistic mediums. And as an environmentalist, I really enjoyed listening to a piece that was inspired by nature!

3. Beethoven's Symphony No. 3 (He only needs one name, like Madonna or Cher!)
This was a revolutionary piece when it was written, and still is seen as such. The piece is twice as long as traditional symphonies of the early 1800's, and he completely changed the traditional structure as well, coming in too strong in the beginning and quieting things when there would normally be a climax. Beethoven broke all the rules!

I really enjoyed this concert, and I hope I can attend similar ones at other colleges in the future!

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