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The Weekend Vote

V.com Weekend Vote: New Music, or Old Music?

September 28, 2012 at 8:48 PM

This has been the first official week of fall, which is both a time of beginnings -- with the start of seasons and academic years -- and a time of winding down for winter and year's end. Musically, it's a season that can push us either way.

Our V.com member Terez Rose wrote a blog about how she likes to visit the works of familiar composers during this time of year. I've noticed that symphony orchestras begin their seasons with the familiar.

Today, though, I've been immersed in listening to Esa-Pekka Salonen's new violin concerto, which he wrote for Leila Josefowicz. A recording of this work comes out in mid-October, and you'll be hearing more from me about it, including an interview with Leila. But what struck me was the fact that I must have been really ready for something new: this grew on me by the second listen. It put me in an experimental frame of mind!

This changes for me, from year to year, season to season: sometimes I just want to play and hear what I know. Other times, I want to lend my ear, my time, my practicing, to something entirely new and innovative. Does it change for you? And today, how are you feeling? Would you prefer to work on -- or listen to -- new music or old music?


From Karen Allendoerfer
Posted on September 29, 2012 at 1:46 PM
I picked new music for today, but it's just new to me. Usually I like old music. We are playing Howard Hanson's Symphony #2 in orchestra, and I had never heard of Hanson before. But it's a great symphony. And then I went back to church choir and there we are singing a piece called The Tree of Peace by Gwyneth Walker (composed in 2006). It's very powerful. I feel lucky to have been introduced to this new music!
From Paul Deck
Posted on September 29, 2012 at 5:09 PM
There wasn't a place to choose "no preference" but then I thought about what I was working on now. By chance I was curious about the British exam system for violin students and I noticed some unfamiliar repertoire, including the Swedish Dances by Bruch and the Spanish Dances by Moszkowski, so I downloaded those from IMSLP and now I'm enjoying working through some of them. So, I'm playing something "new" to me, and at about the right level of what I should be working on, so it's a fun treat.
From Corwin Slack
Posted on September 30, 2012 at 12:15 AM
Biased toward old music and old performances
From Dessie Arnold
Posted on September 30, 2012 at 11:23 PM
I wish there had been a "both" (or "either"). I love it all.
From Herbert Heyman
Posted on October 1, 2012 at 2:43 PM
Old or new? Tough call. The answer is both. I've been listening to lots of Mozart - always go back to Mozart - In the new category, Michael Nyman. I think it depends on the mood one is in.

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