Classical Music Biography
Hardcover ISBN: 0670026379
Eminent historian Paul Johnson dazzles with a rich, succinct portrait of Mozart and his music As he’s done in Napoleon, Churchill, Jesus, and Darwin, acclaimed historian and author Paul Johnson here offers a concise, illuminating biography of Mozart. Johnson’s focus is on the music?Mozart’s wondrous output of composition and his uncanny gift for instrumentation. Liszt once said that Mozart composed more bars than a trained copyist could write in a lifetime. Mozart’s gift and skill with instruments was also remarkable as he mastered all of them except the harp. For example, no sooner had the clarinet been invented and introduced than Mozart began playing and composing for it. In addition to his many insights into Mozart’s music, Johnson also challenges the many myths that have followed Mozart, including those about the composer’s health, wealth, religion, and relationships. Always engaging, Johnson offers readers and music lovers a superb examination of Mozart and his glorious music, which is still performed every day in concert halls and opera houses around the world.
Secret Lives of Great Composers
What Your Teachers Never Told You About the World's Musical Masters
Paperback ISBN: 1594744025
Secret Lives of Great Authors revealed the dirty secrets of Hemingway, Kafka, and Tolstoy. Secret Lives of Great Artists explored the bizarre behavior of Picasso, Matisse, and Monet. Now you can discover the dirty laundry of Beethoven, Wagner, Puccini, and others in Secret Lives of Great Composers an uncensored biography of the world's greatest musical geniuses. You'll learn that Hector Berlioz hatched a plan to kill his ex-fiancee, her lover, and her mother Joseph Haydn had his head stolen by amateur phrenologists days after being buried Richard Wagner dressed in pink women's lingerie Arnold Schoenberg suffered from a debilitating case of triskaidekaphobia a fear of the number 13 And much more! With outrageous stories ranging from the ridiculous (Mozart loved fart jokes) to the even more ridiculous (the absentminded Mahler frequently stirred his tea with cigarettes), Secret Lives of Great Composers is a music lesson you'll never forget.
The Wagner Clan
The Saga of Germany's Most Illustrious and Infamous Family
Paperback ISBN: 0802143997
An Economist Best Book of 2007, Jonathan Carr’s The Wagner Clan proves, with the sweeping scope of a Wagnerian opera, that the history of Europe and that of the infamous composer’s family are inextricably intertwined. Carr presents not only Richard Wagner himself— musician, philosopher, philanderer, failed revolutionary, and virulent anti-Semite—but also a colorful cast of historical figures who feature in Wagner’s story: Franz Liszt (whose illegitimate daughter Cosima married Wagner); Friedrich Nietzsche; Arthur Schopenhauer; Richard Strauss; Gustav Mahler; Arturo Toscanini; Joseph Goebbels; Hermann Göring; and the “Wolf ” himself, Adolf Hitler, a passionate fan of the Master’s music and an adopted uncle to Wagner’s grandchildren. Wagner’s British-born daughter-in-law, Winifred, was a close friend of Hitler’s and seemed momentarily positioned to marry him after the death of her husband. All through the war the Bayreuth Festival, begun by the Master himself, was supported by Hitler, who had to fill the audience with fighting men and SS officers. After the war’s devastation, the festival was dark for a decade until Wagner’s offspring—with characteristic ambition and cunning— revived it. The Wagner Clan is a riveting chronicle of the ascent, decline, and rehabilitation of the German nation and its most infamous family.
How One Man and Ten Symphonies Changed Our World
Paperback ISBN: 140009657x
Why Mahler? Why does his music affect us in the way it does? Norman Lebrecht, one of the world’s most widely read cultural commentators, has been wrestling obsessively with Mahler for half his life. Following Mahler’s every footstep from birthplace to grave, scrutinizing his manuscripts, talking to those who knew him, Lebrecht constructs a compelling new portrait of Mahler as a man who lived determinedly outside his own times. Mahler was—along with Picasso, Einstein, Freud, Kafka, and Joyce—a maker of our modern world. Why Mahler? is a book that shows how music can change our lives.
The Life And Art Of Glenn Gould
Paperback ISBN: 0195182464
When Mikhail Baryshnikov defected in Toronto in 1974, he admitted that he knew only three things about Canada: It had great hockey teams, a lot of wheatfields, and Glenn Gould. In Wondrous Strange, Kevin Bazzana vividly recaptures the life of Glenn Gould, one of the most celebrated pianists of our time. Drawing on twenty years of intensive research, including unrestricted access to Gould's private papers and interviews with scores of friends and colleagues, many of them never interviewed before, Bazzana sheds new light on such topics as Gould's family history, his secretive sexual life, and the mysterious problems that afflicted his hands in his later years. The author places Gould's distinctive traits--his eccentric interpretations, his garish onstage demeanor, his resistance to convention--against the backdrop of his religious, upper- middle-class Canadian childhood, illuminating the influence of Gould's mother as well as the lasting impact of the only piano teacher Gould ever had. Bazzana offers a fresh appreciation of Gould's concert career--his high-profile but illness-plagued international tours, his adventurous work for Canadian music festivals, his musical and legal problems with Steinway & Sons. In 1964, Gould made the extraordinary decision to perform only for records, radio, television, and film, a turning point that the author examines with unprecedented thoroughness (discussing, for example, his far-seeing interest in new recording technology). Here, too, are Gould's interests away from the piano, from his ambitious but failed effort to be a composer to his innovative brand of "contrapuntal radio." Richly illustrated with rare photographs, Wondrous Strange is a superbly written account of one of the most memorable and accomplished musicians of our times.
My Score of My Life
Hardcover ISBN: 157467174x
Captures the life of this celebrated musician, including a review of his childhood days in Bombay, his early education in music in Europe, his great success with orchestras around the world, and his receipt of the United Nations Lifetime Achievement Peace and Tolerance Award.
Dust jacket is sliced by a blade on the crease.