I Write The Music

MOZART – Symphony No. 40 Gm – K 550 – 1. Molto Allegro

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on July 13, 2018


Published on Aug 11, 2008

Anzor Kinkladze Georgian SIMI Festival Orchestra 1998 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart


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AMADEUS MOZART – Linz Symphony , Mozart, Symphony No. 36

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on April 9, 2018



Johannes Brahms – Symphony No. 3 – New York Philharmonic

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on January 10, 2018


Published on Apr 19, 2017

Originally streamed live to Facebook on January 14, 2017. For more information visit http://nyphil.org Subscribe at http://www.youtube.com/user/NewYorkPh… Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nyphilharmonic Twitter: https://twitter.com/nyphil Instagram: https://instagram.com/nyphilharmonic Tumblr: http://nyphil.tumblr.com/
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Why We Analyse Music | Julian Horton

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on August 29, 2017


Society for Music Analysis 

Published on Feb 23, 2016

Professor Julian Horton opens up a dialogue between music analysis and musicology, exploring ways in which motivic and formal analysis can reflect and interact with broader historical issues.

Looking in detail at the exposition in movement one of Brahms’ Symphony No. 1, Op. 68, we will investigate the relationship between functions in a sonata form and the dense network of motivic counterpoint from which they are constructed. This will then be contextualised with late-nineteenth-century debates about the appropriate mode of expression in a symphony, especially the Wagnerian view that Brahms had wrongly imported a domestic, chamber-musical style into a public genre.

For additional content, including recommended recordings, suggested reading and music examples, see http://www.sma.ac.uk/videos/episode-1/.


Presented by Julian Horton
Directed by Neil Neenan (@neilneenan)
Produced by Kirstie Hewlett (@kirstie_hewlett)


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Siegmund von Hausegger – Nature Symphony (1911)

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on August 19, 2017



Symphony for Percussion by Eric Ewazen

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on August 16, 2017



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MICHAEL TILSON THOMAS – MTT- Tchaikovsky Symphony No.4, 4th mvmt

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on July 15, 2017



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Ma Sicong – Symphony No. 2

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on June 21, 2017


musicophage rex

Published on May 26, 2012

Symphony No. 2 (1958-59)

I. Allegro agitato –
II. Adagio maestoso –
III. Allegro

The second symphony of Chinese composer and violinist Ma Sicong (1912-1987), whose name is sometimes also rendered as Ma Sitzon. A native of Heifeng in Guangdong province, Ma became one of the first of his compatriots to become a professional violinist when he followed his older brother’s example and traveled to France at the age of eleven to study music at the conservatories of Nancy and Paris. His skill as a violinist and composer of violin music became legendary and he was known in China as the “King of the Violinists”. After the People’s Republic of China was established, Ma became the director of the China Central Conservatory of Music. In 1958, he served on the jury of the first International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow (that was Van Cliburn’s annus mirabilis). However, when the Cultural Revolution broke out in 1966, Ma and his colleagues at the conservatory fell into disfavour for teaching and playing Western-style classical music; they were all rounded up and sent to a reeducation camp, and their families were harassed by authorities. In 1967, Ma and his family managed to escape to Hong Kong, after which they settled in the United States permanently. Ma remained in exile for the rest of his life.

Ma’s Second Symphony was composed in 1958-59, and ostensibly, it takes as its subject the struggles of the Chinese Workers’ and Peasants’ Red Army. The composer claimed that there is a connection between his music and the poem “Loushan Pass” by Mao Zedong; however, the music can be also interpreted abstractly rather than programmatically. The vigorous first movement makes use of the Phrygian mode and it is in a fairly traditional sonata form. The second theme is derived from “Tian Xin Shun”, a folk song from north Shaanxi. After reaching a climactic moment of great intensity, the music transitions smoothly into the slow, sombre second movement, which bears some resemblance to a funeral march; it is an expression of mourning for fallen comrades-in-arms. However, the battle theme soon emerges again as the Army returns to the fray. The third and final movement is jubilant and lively, as the Army celebrates its victory. At one point the soldiers begin dancing the yangge, a popular rural folk-dance. In the end, a grand coda introduces a new heroic march theme that brings the work to a close.

Conductor: Cao Peng
Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra


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MTT- Tchaikovsky Symphony No.4, 4th mvmt

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on September 25, 2016

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Sibelius, Symphonie Nr 5 Es Dur op 82 Leonard Bernstein, Wiener Philharmoniker

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on August 17, 2016

Beethoven: Symphony No 3 in E flat major, ‘Eroica’ – BBC Proms 2012 (Daniel Barenboim)

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on July 5, 2016

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Prokofiev – Symphony No. 7 / Gergiev · London Symphony Orchestra

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on June 4, 2016

Gustavo Dudamel : Dvorak – Symphony no. 9 – 4th movement – Allegro con fuoco

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on April 18, 2016

Shostakovich Symphony No 5 in D minor, Op 47 IV Allegro non troppo, Diocesan Boys’ School

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on March 29, 2016
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Beethoven Symphony No 3 E flat major Eroica Michael Tilson Thomas London Symphony Orchestra

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on March 5, 2016

Eduard Tubin – Symphony No.5

Posted in Composers by Higher Density Blog on November 15, 2015
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Beethoven – Symphony No.8 – Jarvi, DKB

Posted in Composers by Higher Density Blog on July 15, 2015
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Alice Mary Smith – Symphony in A Minor: I. Allegro

Posted in Uncategorized by Higher Density Blog on May 4, 2015
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Mahler Symphony No 9 – Claudio Abbado – Mahler Youth Orchestra

Posted in Gustave, Mahler, Orchestra, Symphony by Higher Density Blog on April 3, 2014

Arionia Tellus·552 videos

Gustav Mahler Symphony No 9
Claudio Abbado Mahler Jugendorchester
Andante comodo (D major)
Im Tempo eines gemächlichen Ländlers. Etwas täppisch und sehr derb (C major) 24:38
Rondo-Burleske: Allegro assai. Sehr trotzig (A minor) 39:55
Adagio. Sehr langsam und noch zurückhaltend (D-flat major) 52:49

Andrew Ford – Symphony – Brett Dean Conductor

Posted in Composer, Composition, Music, Orchestration, Symphony, Timbre by Higher Density Blog on December 28, 2013

Andrew Ford·8 videos

Andrew Ford’s first symphony, composed in 2008. The Orchestra of the Australian National Academy of Music, conducted by Brett Dean. Scored for 3 flutes (all doubling piccolo), 2 oboes, 2 clarinets (II. doubling bass), 2 bassoons (II. doubling contra), 2 horns, 2 trumpets, 1 tuba, piano, 1 percussion, timpani (+ roto-tom and bass drum), strings.


Program note:

Nobody today writes a symphony — especially not a first symphony — without having to explain why they have adopted the title.

Ten years ago, my friend and colleague Martin Buzacott told me he thought I should compose ‘a symphony in D minor’. At first I thought he was joking, but he was perfectly serious. I was never convinced about the ‘D minor’ bit, but the idea of the symphony has nagged away at me ever since. So, from time to time, has Buzacott.

I have never counted my ‘opuses’. By now, I suppose there must be about a hundred of them. All but three of these pieces have descriptive titles, rather than generic labels. The exceptions are my first string quartet (1985) and my first and fourth chamber concertos (1979 and 2002). But in recent years, I have become aware that in most cases there’s quite a gap between the music I have written and the name I have called it by. In Snatches of Old Lauds, for example, there is no discernible connection between the five-minute solo for bass clarinet, and the quote from Hamlet I’ve pinched for its title. The musical ideas have seemed to be striving for their independence, and therefore my writing roughly 20 minutes of music entitled simply ‘Symphony’ is an acknowledgement of this.

Is this, then, a piece about the music only? Not quite. More than any musical term I can think of, ‘Symphony’ comes with the baggage of all the great symphonies of the past. Even so great a symphonist as Brahms found himself paralysed by the example of Beethoven. But one can’t simply put the history of the symphony out of one’s mind, or why call it a symphony at all? Why not use one of those generic no-names so beloved of composers in the 1960s: Music for Orchestra? Piece No 12?

I felt that if I was going to call piece ‘Symphony’ — and I even toyed with ‘Symphony No 1’, but that just seemed to be tempting fate — then there had to be a real reason for it. Just as you wouldn’t call a poem ‘Sonnet’ and then write 23 lines that didn’t scan, if you take on the word ‘Symphony’, you must deal with first subjects and second subjects, developments and recapitulations, scherzos and slow movements, key relationships and codas. You may choose to reject these things, but you’d better have a good reason. I chose to keep them all, even though they are not laid out in a conventional manner. Within the single movement span, however, you will find clear traces of the component parts of a standard symphony. They tend to interrupt each other and occasionally they superimpose themselves; things come in the wrong order; what sets out as something like a first subject later returns as something like a scherzo; the slow movement and the coda are one and the same: but it’s all there. There is even a hint of D minor.

There are three more influences I ought to mention. One is my wife, Anni, to whom the Symphony is dedicated. She told me she wanted a long tune at the end, and she has it. There’s also a secondary dedication on the final page: ‘in memoriam Ralph Vaughan Williams’. I have listened to a lot of his music this year (the 50th anniversary of his death) and especially the nine symphonies, so strong and personal and, to my ears, ever more impressive. I am not aware of his musical influence on this work, but I would not be unhappy to discover it.

Finally there is the Australian National Academy of Music, its staff and students and its artistic director. I wrote this piece for them to play and for Brett Dean to conduct, and I am very grateful to them for their efforts and for their art.

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