I am participating in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge, and my theme this year is classical music. Check out the list of other participants by clicking here! J is for Johannes Brahms. He was a German composer who lived from 1833 to 1897. In today’s featured video we have two of Brahms’ waltzes in A Major, Op.39, No.15 & Op.52, No.6. with Andreas Ottensamer playing the clarinet.
Video link: https://youtu.be/8V2SHtBp6CA
· Brahms was a perfectionist. He began composing at age 11, but later considered his early compositions embarrassing and he destroyed most of them. He also took 22 years to polish his first symphony; he put it through rigorous editing before he was pleased with it.
· After meeting and working with the Hungarian violinist, Eduard Reményi, Brahms’ style was largely influenced by folk and gypsy music.
· He preferred writing absolute music, which is music that does not refer to any specific scene or narrative. He did not write any operas or symphonic poems.
|Robert and Clara Schumann|
· Brahms was friends with and mentored by composers Robert Schumann and his wife, Clara Schumann. Brahms grew very fond of Clara, and they even performed together a few times. In one of his letters to Clara, Brahms wrote, "I wish I could write to you as tenderly as I love you, and do as many good things for you, as you would like. You are so infinitely dear to me that I can hardly express it. I should like to call you darling and lots of other names, without ever getting enough of adoring you."
· Brahms was also friends with Johann Strauss II, and he complimented Strauss’ Blue Danube waltz, by saying he would have given anything to have come up with it himself.
Yesterday’s Trivia: Does anyone know what happened during the premiere of Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring in 1913? Answer: During the performance, rival factions began shouting and making noises at each other and the audience broke out into a riot. Some accounts of what actually happened may be exaggerated, but this was not the only time audience members were disruptive during a classical music concert. There’s a list here.
For this challenge, I’m keeping a playlist of the videos I’m using plus some extras for anyone who wants to hear more. I will update with the latest letter each day. The extra video I added today is Johannes Brahms’ Hungarian Dance No. 5 performed by the Hungarian Symphony Orchestra.
Are you a perfectionist about anything? Johannes Brahms was considered one of the "Three Bs," who were the other two?