“Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis”

Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis is gorgeous, ethereal and, I came to discover, difficult to capture in words. Out for dinner the other night, I confessed to my husband that I was having trouble getting my essay about it off the ground. It was so clear in my mind, the … Read more

Waking to Ralph Vaughan Williams’s “The Lark Ascending”

Ralph Vaughan Williams’s “The Lark Ascending” falls into that delicious category for me, of classical pieces I discover upon awakening. On weekdays I set my iPad alarm to an HD classical station and at 4:06am the music pierces my dreams, awakening me in the kindest of ways (until the “real” alarm blasts me out of … Read more

Schubert’s seductive “Death and the Maiden”

I don’t consider myself to be someone easily seduced, much less by Death, but Schubert’s “Death and the Maiden” sears a haunting image on my psyche that has few equals in music. (One of them being, ironically, another Schubert piece, his Impromptu No. 3 that I blogged about HERE. And, okay, Debussy’s “Afternoon of a … Read more

Revisiting “The Red Violin”

The lack of performing arts events during this time of shuttered concert halls has brought its own silver lining: the opportunity, indeed, the hunger, to revisit films that incorporate the classical music world and/or its instruments. And you know, reader, which instrument to which I am most partial, right? Step in François Girard’s 1998 The … Read more

10 Somber Classical Tunes for a Pandemic

In my last blog I offered you, dear reader, 10 Happy Classical Tunes for a Pandemic. But what if you don’t feeling like listening to “happy” music right about now? You’re in too much pain. Understandable. Been there. It’s that weird state that commonly follows the death of a loved one, or something huge like … Read more