Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Chariots, Slaves, and the Souls of Men

With Xavi and Angel I went to hear Belshazzar's Feast at the Proms, with young Bryn at the helm. The effect of the brass choirs was stunning: placed at the ends of the second or third galleries by the stage, the antiphony was awesome. A massed choir of about 700 singers was needed to fill the RAH, but Terfel obviously coped alone. Fabulous music.

Xavi commented that much English music (even as far back as Purcell) is characterised by fanfares and brass. He cited Rutter's Magnificat as a random example. Certainly, the effect of Walton's music on film scores is still evident today: little has changed fundamentally since the 1930s in terms of big orchestral scores for film.


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