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Friday, 19 February 2016


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They let you take a suitcase to the Lubyanka?

Maybe we could try sitting in the cold and nationalising all our industry to see if it would encourage our British composers to do better?

And yet their pop and rock is mostly cr*p!

David if you're a Shostakovich fan I hope you watched this:

It was one of the most - in fact actually THE most - astonishing and moving things I have ever seen on television.

It's off the iPlayer now but hopefully some kind soul will put it on Youtube, or perhaps it will be shown again.

Cannot recommend it too strongly.

Duffers - I think there is something to be said for the idea of great art being born of suffering.

Richard, everyone's pop and rock is crap!

I saw that, Andrew, it was a terrific programme.

You may be right, Cuffers.

Not only are those Russian composers a gifted bunch, the Orthodox Church has produced some excellent all male choirs with powerful harmonies. Most feature one or more "basso profundo" voices which make the listening very easy.

What I like about Prokofiev is how incredibly happy he always is. Here's the second movement of the fifth symphony. Enjoy!

Don't so much enjoy the Romantic Russians (Tchaikovsky et al.) but Shostakovich is right up there with Bach for me. In a few weeks I will have the opportunity to attend a concert of his complete 24 Preludes and Fugues. Have been listening to the Tatiana Nikolaeva recordings in preparation and they are magnificent.
I'll have to look for the Barnes book, thanks for the recommendation!

Alas, Whiters, I have little knowledge of church music, especially Russian, although I have long admired English medieval chanting.

Thanks, Dom, I will have a listen tot that tomorrow.

Gunner, welcome to D&N by the way, and I must confess my ignorance of Shosta's Preludes and Fugues but I will look to educate myself in due course. I do have his string quartets which I find immensely stimulating.

When I was at school it was mandatory to listen to Peter and the Wolf. It was fine but I preferred Elvis. I do listen to the Classic Radio on a Sunday and that is also mandatory due to my wife insisting. Women school teachers and wives rule our lives. Must be the EU, we men are getting soft!

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