Monthly Archives: December 2014

Exploring Melancholy

“So if you want to listen, it is not enough only to hear.  You must first find your melancholy.  And music is the best of all possible means to do this. … Listening is a practice, not merely an activity.  … Continue reading

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Why do modern philosophers suffer from amusia?

The French philosopher Jean-Luc Nancy opens his book Listening/À l’écoute (2002) with two questions:  “Is listening something of which philosophy is capable? … Isn’t the philosopher someone who always hears/entend (and who hears everything), but who cannot listen, or who, … Continue reading

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Beautiful women

One of the many ways in which Pantelis Polychronidis is making music is by verbalizing female beauty. He and I sit in at a café, a beach, a concert hall, a park, and he notices a woman and starts telling … Continue reading

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Doppelgänger

In 1830 Berlioz wrote a five-movement program work called An Episode in the Life of an Artist, in Five Parts: Symphonie Fantastique. The protagonist of the episode is a “young musician of morbidly sensitive temperament and fiery imagination” (Cone, Hector … Continue reading

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“For Philip Guston”

One of the towering friendships of the 20h century was the artistic and intellectual interaction between the indeterminacy composer Morton Feldman (1926-87) and the abstract caricaturist Philip Guston (1913-88).  They met in 1950 in Carnegie Hall, where they had gone … Continue reading

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Re-composition

The original score of Mozart’s “Coronation” Concerto (1788) leaves out large parts of the left hand of the piano part. Composer and pianist Timothy Andres (b. 1985) completes it in ways that are alternatively dissonant, dissolving, and dreamy. The cadenza … Continue reading

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A Boy’s Solitude

Since the 1920s the narrative of the Greek popular song tells one major story: There is a dejected guy (“Το πικραμένο αγόρι”) who cannot have the girl he loves because of his possessive mother (“Μπιζέρισα”) and there is a friend … Continue reading

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