Billy Budd – A closer look at the score

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ZhTAcO0r9o I want to look at a particular passage from Benjamin Britten’s great opera, Billy Budd, to see how we can learn from his orchestral writing. Billy Budd is a truly masterful work, and really rewards repeated listening; I recommend especially the 1966 BBC production that is, at least currently, available on YouTube, if you’re [...]

Gustav Mahler – Against Nihilism

Listening to Gustav Mahler’s ninth symphony recently, having heard a number of contemporary pieces utilising orchestral ‘sample libraries’, I was struck by just how clear and precise Mahler’s orchestration is, in a way I’d not fully appreciated before. It brought to mind the fact that, with all our technology and means of reproducing sounds in [...]