Author: David Milofsky
Publisher: University Press of Colorado
Release Date: 1999-04-15
Playing From Memory is a deeply moving, compassionate novel about the power of marriage to survive under stress, a love story that tells of a musician's courageous battle against a degenerative illness and his wife's struggle to face the end of their life together. Ben Seidler, an intense, passionately committed violist, is at the height of his career as a member of the Casa Bella Quartet, one of the foremost string quartets in the nation. His gifts as a concert artist had always been intuitive, but love did not come so easily. It took determination to win the hand of his wife, Dory, who was reluctant to set aside her ambitions of becoming an artist. Their marriage is at once complex and ordinary, balancing the rigors of long rehearsal sessions against the daily round of family life with their two sons. Then suddenly the rhythm of their lives is shattered when Ben falls victim to multiple sclerosis. Stubbornly independent, Ben refuses to rely on others until necessity forces him to see that there are things beyond his control. Through a new closeness with his aging father, his older son, and, most importantly, Dory, he learns to accept help and to appreciate human frailty and affection. As Ben's health declines, Dory is forced to resume her career and compete in a world dominated by men, and to re-examine her feelings and commitment to her husband. As their lives change, so does their marriage, and Ben and Dory forge a new kind of love, a fierce love that sustains them through everything.
The author tells of his own development as a student, "of how he and his intrepid colleagues were converted to chamber music ... [and of how] four individualists master and then overcome the confining demands of ensemble playing."--Jacket.
Author: Robin Stowell
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Release Date: 2003-11-13
This Companion offers a concise and authoritative survey of the string quartet by eleven chamber music specialists. Its fifteen carefully structured chapters provide coverage of a stimulating range of perspectives previously unavailable in one volume. It focuses on four main areas: the social and musical background to the quartet's development; the most celebrated ensembles; string quartet playing, including aspects of contemporary and historical performing practice; and the mainstream repertory, including significant 'mixed ensemble' compositions involving string quartet. Various musical and pictorial illustrations and informative appendixes, including a chronology of the most significant works, complete this indispensable guide. Written for all string quartet enthusiasts, this Companion will enrich readers' understanding of the history of the genre, the context and significance of quartets as cultural phenomena, and the musical, technical and interpretative problems of chamber music performance. It will also enhance their experience of listening to quartets in performance and on recordings.
Author: Edward Dusinberre
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Release Date: 2016-05-06
Beethoven’s sixteen string quartets are some of the most extraordinary and challenging pieces of music ever written. Originally composed and performed between 1798 and 1826, they have inspired artists of all kinds—not only musicians—and have been subject to endless reinterpretation. But what is it like to personally take up the challenge of these compositions, not only as a musician, but as a member of a quartet, where each player has ideas about style and expression? To answer this question, Edward Dusinberre, first violinist of the renowned Takács Quartet, offers a rare peek inside the workings of his ensemble, while providing an insightful history of the compositions and their performance. Founded in Hungary in 1975 and now based in Boulder, Colorado, the Takács is one of the world’s preeminent string quartets, and performances of Beethoven have been at the center of their work together for over forty years. Using the history of both the Takács Quartet and the Beethoven quartets as a foundation, Beethoven for a Later Age provides a backstage look at the daily life of a quartet, showing the necessary creative tension between individual and group and how four people can at the same time forge a lasting artistic connection and enjoy making music together over decades. The key, Dusinberre reveals, to a quartet crafting its own sound is in balancing continuity with change and experimentation—a theme that lies at the heart of Beethoven’s remarkable compositions. In an accessible style, suitable for novices and chamber music enthusiasts alike, Dusinberre illuminates the variety and contradictions of Beethoven's quartets, which were composed against the turbulent backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars and their aftermath, and he brings the technical aspects of the music to life. Beethoven for a Later Age vividly shows that creative engagement with Beethoven’s radical and brilliant quartets continues to be as stimulating now as it was for its first performers and audiences. Musicians and music lovers will be intrigued by Dusinberre’s exploration of the close collaboration at the heart of any great performance.
Years after separating, violinist Michael Holme is reunited with his former lover, pianist Julia McNicholl, during a musical tour of Vienna, unaware that she is hiding her increasing deafness, and together they must confront their feelings for each other and the music that both unites and divides them. Reprint. 40,000 first printing.
Book One in Elena Ferrante's Neapolitan Quartet A modern masterpiece from one of Italy’s most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense, and generous-hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila. Ferrante’s inimitable style lends itself perfectly to a meticulous portrait of these two women that is also the story of a nation and a touching meditation on the nature of friendship. The story begins in the 1950s, in a poor but vibrant neighborhood on the outskirts of Naples. Growing up on these tough streets the two girls learn to rely on each other ahead of anyone or anything else. As they grow, as their paths repeatedly diverge and converge, Elena and Lila remain best friends whose respective destinies are reflected and refracted in the other. They are likewise the embodiments of a nation undergoing momentous change. Through the lives of these two women, Ferrante tells the story of a neighborhood, a city, and a country as it is transformed in ways that, in turn, also transform the relationship between her protagonists, the unforgettable Elena and Lila. Ferrante is the author of three previous works of critically acclaimed fiction: The Days of Abandonment, Troubling Love, and The Lost Daughter. With this novel, the first in a tetralogy, she proves herself to be one of Italy’s great storytellers. She has given her readers a masterfully plotted page-turner, abundant and generous in its narrative details and characterizations, that is also a stylish work of literary fiction destined to delight her many fans and win new readers to her fiction.
Architects are used to designing visually. In order to expand their basic design tools, this book explores the interactions between sound, space, hearing, and architecture. To this end, the author uses contemporary and historic buildings and projects, but also fictional, philosophical, and theoretical approaches - the idea is not only to define sound as a source, but also as an instrument of architectural space. By introducing a metatheory of "critical hearing", designers are able to acoustically test their projects and contribute to their design with auditive input, already at the design stage.
Author: John Marchese
Publisher: Harper Collins
Release Date: 2010-01-26
How does a simple piece of wood become a violin, the king of instruments? Watch and find out as Eugene Drucker, a member of the world–renowned Emerson String Quartet, commissions Sam Zygmuntowicz, a Brooklyn craftsman, to make him a new violin. As he tells this extraordinary story, journalist John Marchese shares the rich lore of this beloved instrument and illuminates an art that has barely changed since the Renaissance. Marchese takes readers from start to finish as Zygmuntowicz builds the violin, from the first selection of the wood, to the cutting of the back and belly, through the carving of the scroll and the fingerboard, to the placement of the sound peg. Though much of the story takes place in the craftsman's museum–like Brooklyn workshop, there are side trips across the river to the rehearsal rooms of Carnegie Hall and Lincoln center, and across the world. Stops on the itinerary include Cremona, Italy, the magical city where Antonio Stradivari (and a few of his contemporaries) achieved a level of violin–making perfection that has endured for centuries, as well as points in France and Germany integral to the history of the violin. A stunning work of narrative nonfiction that's also a finely crafted, loving homage to the instrument that most closely approximates the human voice.
Author: M. O. Walsh
Release Date: 2015-02-10
THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER "A tantalizing mystery and a tender coming-of-age story...Unputdownable."—Oprah.com In the summer of 1989, a Baton Rouge neighborhood best known for cookouts on sweltering summer afternoons, cauldrons of spicy crawfish, and passionate football fandom is rocked by a violent crime when fifteen-year-old Lindy Simpson—free spirit, track star, and belle of the block—is attacked late one evening near her home. As the dark side of this idyllic stretch of Southern suburbia is revealed, the close-knit neighborhood is irreversibly transformed. In My Sunshine Away, M.O. Walsh brilliantly juxtaposes the enchantment of a charmed childhood with the gripping story of a violent crime, unraveling families, and consuming adolescent love. Acutely wise and deeply honest, it is an astonishing and page-turning debut about the meaning of family, the power of memory, and our ability to forgive. Named A Book of the Year by NPR, The Dallas Morning News, Kirkus Reviews, and Booklist An Entertainment Weekly 'Must List' Pick From the Hardcover edition.
He came along, kicking the snow. Here was a disgusted man. His name was Svevo Bandini, and he lived three blocks down that street. He was cold and there were holes in his shoes. That morning he had patched the holes on the inside with pieces of cardboard from a macaroni box. The macaroni in that box was not paid for. He had thought of that as he placed the cardboard inside his shoes.